I’m Sensitive and I’d Like To Stay That Way* #sol15

I’ve always been a sensitive person. I pick up on emotions.  I feel things intensely. I wear my heart on my sleeve.  I’m sensitive.

For the longest time, I thought this was a problem.  I needed to get a thicker skin.  Stop taking things so personally. Toughen up.  I saw my sensitivity as a deficit rather than an asset.

Sure, being sensitive has meant that I’ve been sad, angry, or hurt unnecessarily.  It’s meant that I’ve taken things the wrong way or over-thought things. It’s meant that I’ve cried in the bathroom at work more times than I’d care to admit.  But I’ve learned to recognize and manage over-sensitivity.  I’ve also learned that my sensitivity is not a weakness.  It’s an essential piece of who I am.

Having stepped into the role of instructional coach these last two years, I’ve done a lot of reflecting on working with adults in various roles and situations.  One thing that I have come to realize is that my sensitivity is a huge asset for me in this role.  My sensitivity allows me to connect with the teachers I serve and to better understand where they are coming from.  While it can sometimes be exhausting for me feeling all of those feelings, I think (I hope) that it makes me a better coach.  I’ve learned that my sensitivity helps me see things from others’ perspectives.  By putting myself in others’ shoes, I can better reflect and plan for ways to push their thinking.  It helps me know where, how, and when to push.

It’s not always comfortable and it can be downright challenging at times, but I’m grateful that I’ve learned to appreciate this part of me so that I can raise my girls to appreciate their sensitivity as well.

*Thanks for the song lyrics, Jewel.

During March, I’m participating in the Slice of Life Story Challenge over at Two Writing Teachers.

Comments

  1. I never made the connection between being sensitive with my feelings to using it to be sensitive to others’ feelings. I thought being sensitive to others was just part of my skill set. Thank you for making me aware of this connection.

  2. I suspect your sensitivity is one of the best things you bring to coaching. Sometimes, though, don’t you envy people who have thicker skin?

  3. Kudos for being able to see it that way. I am very sensitive too but I haven’t learned to embrace it, much as I try!

    • It has definitely taken me a long time to embrace my sensitivity and see it as a positive. Some days, I still struggle!

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