HSP: learn to deal with negative energy

negativity

Highly sensitive people are more prone to negative energy. Negative energy weakens us in many ways. All of a sudden we feel blurry in the head, weak in the knees or are struck by stomach cramps. In most of the situations we are also overwhelmed by an incapacity to speak up for ourselves. In my coaching practice I have seen men and woman passing by who were willing to work on this, they signaled their inability to handle negative energy and wanted to get to the core of this.

There was this guy in particular who suffered hyperventilation after an outburst of a client. He was sent of to a house to fix the things his colleague failed to do properly. The client showed his disappointment to him even though he knew he wasn’t the one who caused the problem. At the moment he handled it with care, but the energy filled with disappointment and anger fired up his way was whirling around in his system for days, especially in his head!

In his head he would fantasize about future scenarios about conflicts with his employer, colleagues and clients.

And what to do if you’re working with a boss who’s emotional state is unpredictable and confusing? Highly sensitive people feel every change in other people’s emotional state of being. They feel alerted when someone comes in at a meeting, a drink or at the grocery store with an emotional state which can be described as sad, frustrated or downright grumpy. Depending the situation they feel like running away or sit still and wait for the right moment to step in. In this case, when working with a boss who comes in one day super happy and the next day as if the company would collapse in front of his eyes, what would you do as a highly sensitive person?

The answer to this question can be find at the core of the “problem”. I have written problem in between brackets, because I’d rather perceive emotional/ psychological “problems” as chances to work on one’s emotional being. In all of the situations above the negative energy experienced can be traced back to the highly sensitive people’s childhood. When we don’t know how to deal with negative energy in daily adult situations this is a signal that we haven’t learnt to deal with different negative energy’s in the past.

Energy can be read as in “emotions”, basic emotions such as anger and sadness.

We could differentiate these emotions as disappointment, frustration, irritation, mourning, hatred, anguish and envy among many more. These emotions are seen as negative and therefore I will refer as them as such, but in my view of personal development these emotions are the gateway to emotional freedom and a strong belief of self.

In childhood our relationship with our caretakers influence the way we handle emotions of others and of ourselves. When we haven’t healed our emotional wounds we are consciously or unconsciously tortured by our reactions directed by our wounded inner child. The wounded inner child will attract the experiences in life in order to emotionally grow. A highly sensitive person raised by caretakers who were still walking around with their own pain; anger and sadness will automatically absorb these negative emotions. They are not able to experience these emotions separate from themselves. Depending on the character of the child and the relationship to their caretakers the child’s mental and emotional development will be influenced.

What happens in adult life is that people, when open for personal development, start to discover the root of their behavioral patterns. Aha, so the reason I can’t handle disappointment is because I have compensated my insecurities by doing the most sublime work I am able to do in order for my father to notice me. And walking around with an overall feel of insecurity about me taking upon so much responsibility is because my mom did everything possible for me. Whenever I needed help she was there. She wanted to be there, because her parents died on her when she was young. She didn’t even get to know them.

I have spoken many highly sensitive people who are living with the best intentions and doing the best they can for their families, but with one caretaker blowing them away with unexpected anger which had nothing to do with them, they walk around in life feeling afraid of opening their mouth. They are just paralyzed by misplaced anger. And there is this hunger, this innate need for acknowledgment of who they are and this desire to be valued for their actions. In the end, they are the ones who will give all of these positive emotions to themselves. They are worth to feel every single bit of emotion running through their veins.

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Looking back on 2011

2011 has set the tone for the rest of my life. Some major changes took place in a year which can be characterized as ‘slow living’.

Relationship

We have learned a lot from our relationship since it is pretty difficult to deal with burn-out. My partner Arnold is suffering continuous headache and had just about enough energy to teach capoeira a couple of times a week. Everything else weighed on my shoulders. There was no ‘us-time’, because there was no energy. I had to accept that if I wanted to do ‘fun stuff’ I had to do this alone or with friends. He didn’t even have the energy to think about ‘accepting the situation’. In stead he crawled into bed and in a later stage he could go out for walk in the forest or at the beach. And that’s about it. Being alone in a relationship is tough. This goes for the both of us.

My deep respect goes to what he did for my birthday. Even though he didn’t have the energy, he tapped into his willpower to surprise me with a gift on the morning of my birthday; a child’s seat for the bicycle. Our eyes filled with tears. In return I still haven’t done anything special for his birthday. I feel bad and than he reassures me: you do enough for me, thanks. Luckily our strong belief that these tough times would be for the better got us through 2011.

Parenthood
Every day our sun rose between six and seven o’clock in the morning. We are blessed to be her parents. She is cheerful and happy. She sleeps like a rose; 12 hours each night, and eats like a horse; everything we serve her. Where Arnold could loosen up the parenting I could be more clear in saying-no when she’s asking for the food on my plate while in fact she was done eating. All together we’re blessed that despite his illness both of us are on the top of things concerning her development.

Food
As a part of Arnold’s fysical and emotional development he started to bake his own bread. After a visit to a mesoloog; someone who practices the art of identifying what nutrients the body needs, lacks or is allergic to. He needed to avoid some nutrients so we started to do more grocery shopping at the organic food stores. So besides white rice, potatoes, pasta we added quinoa, pasta made from spelt, pancakes made from spelt, buckwheat, couscous, corn, taro, cassava and a whole range of pulses. In 2008 I promised my grandfather to avoid the deep frozen fish from the supermarkets. In 2009 he passed away. In 2010 our daughter was born. And halfway through 2011 I decided to definitely switch to super fresh fish: keeping my promise. Ever since we buy our fish in Scheveningen or at the Hague market. With regards to meat; we started eating more organic meat. There is no definite switch from my side and by exception I eat non-organic meat served by restaurants, family or friends.

Work
Summer 2011 we both realized what our focus concerning career should be. I discovered my path in coaching after having practiced coaching for 8 years both on individual- and group level.  This is coaching highly sensitive people on all topics of life and coaching people to act out of their core being; acting upon their intuition. Arnold decided to finish his third studies in the field of nutrition (bachelor food and dietetics) and continue working as a capoeira teacher for adults and children. I believe it was his ninth year of having practiced capoeira. So it seems that four years ago our lives have come together for a reason; sustaining and supporting fysical, mental and inner growth.

To conclude 2011: we learned that trust and accepting the situation as it is, makes for a solid foundation on which inner growth is possible.

Coaching: working on a positive attitude

My experience with coachees is that most people do have some kind of idea about what they want in life, but they don’t know how to get there.

1. Finetuning personal goals
During the first session we talk about these ideas on work, love relationship and other wishes regarding their personal development. Like I said, most people have some kind of idea about what they want in life, but when they find themselves talking to a coach they actually finetune what they want. For example: I want a job which will match my studies, knowledge and job experience. We can finetune this goal into: I want a job in which I can mainly work with people away from the desk. I am a real people person. We can then add this to the previous goal and we get a much clearer idea of where we should head to.

2.  Identity coaching: who are you? 
After having set out the personal goals of the coaching traject we really start talking about how you can get there. To get there you need yourself! What do I mean by this? You need to know what your skills are, what you are capable of doing, what your strong and weak points are and how you can put your skills out there to get what you want. Most of the time I come in (into your life) as a coach to broaden and deepen your view on yourself as a person and on life. There are different coaching ways to get out there what you’re good at.

3. Changing mood: get positive and focused
Further down the road: there is no need to talk any further about what you want in life if you’re mentally not ready to think about those stuff. So first of all, I will get you through your world of limiting beliefs. When thinking back on a session I believe the most important thing in which I succeeded during this session was changing the mood of the coachee. At start the coachee was really sad; eyes were hanging, radiation a bit greyish and tone-of-voice was empty. After around 15 minutes I started provoking. From that moment onwards the coachee’s mood became more and more positive; laughing, stronger non-verbal communication, more strength in tone-of-voice and even joking around.

And when you feel in the mood again we get back on the tracks you have chosen to be.