How many people have been told that they are too sensitive . . . hands up? Oh, I see some people also have their feet up as well.
In our society, at this point in time, sensitivity is about the last thing people want to be accused of. We live in such a ‘harden up princess’ society that we have lost the true purpose and understanding of sensitivity. It seems as though in today’s world, it would be easier for someone to be a special forces soldier in a war than to truly value and stand by their sensitivity.
We have all heard variations of the following phrases:
- “Drink a bucket of cement and harden up”
- “Suck it up”
- “Stop being a girl”
- “Stop being such a baby”
- “Man up”
- “Harden the F*** up”
It is now the trend to harden up and be tough but this isn’t a fly-by-night trend; it has been brewing for a while and this trend transcends generations. I see children in primary school through to people in their late 70’s that have succumb to this way of thinking. I am absolutely sure that as a society we are unaware of exactly what we are losing out on and the devastation this way of thinking is actually causing us.
Let me clarify some things.
1. Sensitivity is not the same as weakness, in fact, they are worlds apart.
Sensitivity is our ability to feel the subtleties of life in great detail. It is the courage to discern everything in life for its ability to stack up to harmlessness. Through sensitivity, we know that all life’s interactions can be felt and have an effect on all those around us. Sensitivity knows how each person affects another and therefore the responsibility we naturally have towards one another. It is something to be valued and honoured.
Without the ability to sense the subtleties in life, we are left without true philosophy, have no great insight and no compass with which to navigate the world. If we discount our sensitivity then what do we allow to navigate the world? Is it the cool calculating intellect, the dog-eat-dog mentality, or impulsiveness and greed for fast gains?
It takes a lot of strength to feel everything that is going on and not bury our heads in the sand. It takes even more strength to stand up for and speak on behalf of our sensitivity. If there were more people who valued and honoured sensitivity, the world would be a very different place. If everyone was to toughen up, then as a society we become more tolerant of abuse and less compassionate. Sensitivity holds us, others and the world accountable. As a collective, are we moving towards a less accountable society in our pursuit of a “harden up princess” way of life?
2. Sensitivity is not emotional, it is completely different.
When we become emotional through reacting to what we have felt, we are no longer able to see situations clearly. As soon as there is a reaction, we are part of the fight and we let what we have felt change how we feel about ourselves. . . we have become upset, hardened, dejected, frustrated etc. In this we lose our clarity to be able to bring truth to a situation; we are no longer able to see both sides as we have become part of the right and wrong tussle and often fall for being the victim.
If we do not value our sensitivity for the true strength it is, we do not give ourselves any avenue to bring truth to situations. Strength comes from our sensitivity, not from emotional outbursts of anger or frustration. It takes a lot of strength to be sensitive enough to feel, and a lot of back bone to stand for the truth of what you have felt without an ounce of judgement or reaction.
Years ago I wrote a blog about honouring our tenderness. This blog was in response to a quote I read from Betty White . . . think Rose from the T.V. show Golden Girls.
“Why do people say “Grow some balls”? Balls are weak and sensitive! If you really want to get tough, grow a vagina! Those things take a pounding!” – Betty White
On a superficial level, this quote is quite funny (albeit crass), however, on a deeper level this quote is to say the least . . . very sad. What it really exposes about our society is that we are championing toughness, and we are in a constant battle of the sexes.
You can click here if you would like to read the full blog called To honour our tenderness.
So as a parting question, I would like to ask you to contemplate . . . What would our society be like if we valued and nurtured the quality of true sensitivity?
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Rebecca Poole has been a sought after presenter for many years and at the beginning of 2017 Rebecca started a series of presentations Health and Healing in Life. With the help of her husband, these presentations are being recorded to enable people to have access world wide.