Sensitivity is a trait common to every human being. We are all born sensitive to external stimuli, to people and to different environments. However, since childhood, there are some traits when it comes to determining the degrees of sensitivity of a child, whose parents must be attentive to also raise them with greater empathy.
Certainly, each child is a world and their emotional and sensitive universe is also. Much has been discussed and the research on these people called Highly Sensitive People (PAS) is very extensive, but the conclusion is that in these subjects there are degrees of stronger activation of the brain regions involved in knowledge and awareness. empathy, as collected a study carried out by neuroscientists, and published in the National Institutes of Health (NIH). In fact and from the Association of People with High Sensitivity of Spain (APASE), make it available to all interested parties a test Guidance course by Dr. Elaine N. Aron and based on the book: The Gift of High Sensitivity, and thus provide parents with a tool with which they can know if their child is highly sensitive.
The most recent report published by the American Psycologial Assotiation (WHAT) explores the degrees of sensitivity in PAS children, although throughout the scientific review in this regard, some features common to all are determined, which are: extreme and intense sensory perception, their excessive ability to capture details and nuances, their high sensitivity to noise and external bustle, smells from the environment or bright lights, and the fact of being overwhelmed with the excess of information they receive that can produce physical or emotional saturation, because the way they process that information in their mind is deep and they tend to reflect.
In addition, these girls and boys are closely linked to nature and animals, which come to calm them a lot. Music can also be their escape route from the world, they cry often, and they worry a lot about getting into problems or conflicts, so they require a lot of tranquility.
Three Strategies for Raising a Highly Sensitive Child
So, and just as says psychologist Amy Morin, author of the best seller: 13 Things Mentally Strong Parents Don’t Do (13 Things Extremely Strong Parents Don’t Do, from Spanish Translation), among others, lhe discipline by parents with a highly sensitive child, perhaps, it becomes a little more complicated task when it comes to scolding them or imposing severe punishment, so it is important to find ways to guide these little ones in the right way. What then could be good strategies?
- Accept their sensitivity and give them more downtime: “Emphasizing their strengths and gifts is a good start, as what may be too easy for another child is more difficult for a highly sensitive one. Teach them to deal with their emotions, as they need to learn to verbalize their feelings ”, says the expert. On the other hand, care should be taken to over-schedule them with extracurricular activities or social plans. “Downtime at home is very important for a sensitive child to feel safe and relax in quiet tasks like coloring, listening to music or reading,” he adds.
- Set limits and offer them rewards: He is a sensitive child, yes, but he also needs discipline and they must be prepared to deal with reality. “While it is important to be flexible, discipline helps teach children how to become responsible adults, because in the end they must learn and grow by experiencing the consequences of their actions, which is essential for healthy development,” Morin continues. The expert assures that sensitive children sometimes feel bad if they get into trouble, so a good tactic so that they do not feel too bad is to turn a rule into a reward. “For example at lunchtime, instead of imposing, you are not going to eat the cake until you eat the food! We can turn it into if you eat the food, I’ll give you the cake later!” the expert.
- Teach them to solve problems: highly sensitive children often feel overwhelmed in certain situations or problems in which they can get stuck without knowing how to respond, so in these situations it is important that they know how to find some solutions that can relieve their stress and anxiety. “Here parents should involve them and make them participate in conflict resolution and learn those skills, as it will be of great help to them to gain confidence and their spare capacity to handle all uncomfortable situations,” concludes Morin.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.