Sunny weather? Why that might be a challenge if you're highly sensitive

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It’s June, and that means: sunny weather. For highly sensitive persons, the sun can be extra intense. How does that work? HSP-expert Femke de Grijs explains. 

For many people, being highly sensitive is combined with perfectionism, empathy and overstimulation. Highly sensitive people experience the world – with all its stimuli and triggers – more intensely than others. This has its upsides: as a HSP, you probably feel more connected to nature, easily pick up how other people feel, you’re genuinely responsible and strive for harmony. 

But living an intense and highly sensitive life has a downside, too, especially if you don’t know how to handle it yet. Your sensitivity makes you vulnerable, you tend to get off balance and when you’re overstimulated, you sometimes get angry, scared or sad. 

The stimuli don’t just come from other people’s actions, but also from natural circumstances. Like the weather. If there’s a heat wave, for HSP’s this is extra intense. 

Boundaries and drinking water

Femke de Grijs, HSP expert, explains. ‘People who are highly sensitive are able to enjoy heat more intensely, but they can also experience the downside of it more intensely – think skin problems, headaches, nausea, lack of concentration. Of course, it’s different for everybody.’ 

When a highly sensitive person experiences physical, emotional and / or mental problems, they might have been in the sun or in the heat for too long. That’s why boundaries are very important for them. 

But, as Femke says: ‘Some highly sensitive people find it difficult to set these boundaries. They feel guilty when they say they want to stay in and other people are disappointed.’ 

True to yourself 

‘In that case, it’s very important for a HSP to control their sensitivity and stay true to themselves and their own energy,’ Femke advises. ‘That’s how they can be clear about their boundaries, and don’t make other people’s feelings personal.’

A good way to be true to yourself as a HSP, is by honestly telling people how you’re feeling and what you wish for. ‘For instance, say: “I have a hard time handling the heat and I want to go to the supermarket tonight, when it’s cooler outside.”’

Besides, highly sensitive persons tend not to drink enough water. During hot days, be sure to drink two liters of water (not too cold) in order to hydrate your body. Because, according to Femke, the most important thing is: ‘Take good care of yourself. There’s no such thing as the ultimate trick, every HSP is unique. But taking good care of yourself should always be your first priority.’  

Text: Eline Hoffman - Photo: Mel Elías