Identity And Thoughts: Changing The Cultural Narrative For Highly Sensitive People
Do your thoughts drive you crazy?
Do you ruminate a lot and feel that you are going around in circles?
Do you think that your thoughts control you?
What Are Our Thoughts?
Our thoughts are mental pictures that we create. They often seem automatic and out-of-control. They are a natural consequence of our interaction with daily life and are your way of processing and dealing with what is happening around you and to you.
Our thoughts are our mind’s desire to take care of us. They also are a way of our dealing with the unknown and unknowable. Our thoughts support our assumed identities and try to identify our place in the world. They help us to belong.
Unfortunately, our thoughts often seem to be running our lives.
Why Are Our Thoughts So Painful?
For many thoughts can be very painful because through our thoughts we determine here we stand in life. Our thoughts are essentially left brained operating in a linear way and aligned with the manifested world. They are mathematical and materialistic.
If we identify with our left brained thoughts then we are only looking at a small part of reality and not necessarily what is true.
One of the reasons thoughts can be painful is because they attempt to place us in an identity that works in a world that often has preconceived ideas about who we are and should be.
Our Thoughts And The Cultural Narrative
Our thoughts can be a lot of things. They can be about personal aspects of our lives as well as the public aspects. Sometimes they have a short term focus. Sometimes not.
Most often they seem to be a way of interpreting and dealing with the cultural narrative around us. The problem with continually engaging in this way is that the cultural narrative usually has a life of its own. For highly sensitive people, the cultural narrative is usually about non-HSP life and lifestyles so it is basically not about them.
We can, therefore, feel left out and our thoughts do not necessarily help us with that.
However, we are not here to serve a social structure. We are here to become our best self. Sometimes the social structure and our evolution are at odds and we are not suppose to fit in.
Reclaiming Your Narrative
It is important to have a sense of yourself separate from the narrative around you.
Narratives about life are just stories as the research on human evolution in Spiral Dynamics show. Narratives are the social structure created to support and justify a particular cultural embodiment. They change when we need to change. They are not sacred. One person’s narrative is not necessarily another person’s narrative.
Narratives are not necessarily the TRUTH.
When you try to be a part of the cultural narrative and take your identity from it, you may be creating problems for yourself.
Identifying with the cultural narrative works for many non-HSPs since the narrative usually reflects them. It may feel wrong that they can be so comfortable in the cultural narrative when as a highly sensitive person you feel like an outsider.
For that reason, you have to identify a narrative for yourself or your thoughts will be dominated by ideas related to a narrative that doesn’t suit you and only causes you mental frustration.
Creating Your Own Narrative
Highly sensitive people need to create their own narrative.
We need to separate ourselves from the dominant narrative. To do so we need to make some mental adjustments:
- see the existing cultural narrative as changing rather than fixed.
- align your narrative with the evolutionary process going on around you. That way you support improvements in life and are not simply fighting the existing cultural narrative.
- notice how your narrative can be helpful to others as a way to help you maintain your ability to connect with others.
When you take back your narrative, you can eliminate a lot of the thoughts you have about your place in the existing system and let your thoughts now serve where you are going and what you are becoming.
It is a great way to stop ruminating and start creating the life you deserve.
thank you, Maria..that was very helpful. It made absolute sense. 🙂
Thanks, Ama I am glad you liked it.
All the best,
Yes, so helpful. I needed to hear this right now too!
Thanks, Hilary! Changing the narrative is important for us and I am glad you liked the article.
All the best,
So true Maria! I so agree. We do need to create our own narrative and re-write the story we might have been told about who we are. as HSPs.
Thanks, Ritu. We are encouraged to serve a cultural narrative that does not suit us. I am gad we are starting to change that.