Ok, so here’s a little scenario. You’re born, and you’re this little bundle full of just being you. There’s no complicated conditioning, no rules, no restraints, just you being you. Then what, you grow up, and you get taught how you’re supposed to be.
Now, depending on where, when and how your growing up happened, you might have been encouraged to continue to be a bigger bundle of (mostly) just being you, or you might have been shut down to the max- or anywhere and everywhere in between. When it comes to being an HSP, whatever happened, you probably got a lot of messages somehow that being sensitive was being TOO sensitive. Even if your parents were all for it, you still live in a society where sensitivity isn’t considered the norm, or even sane. So even if things were pretty great growing up, you’ll likely have some negative conditioning around this anyway.
Now, for those of us who very early on got the message that being who you are isn’t ok, something profound and traumatic will have happened: you learned that you weren’t supposed to be who you are. Since, all we can do is be who we are (there really is nobody else we can be), that all would have translated to “I – as in: the real me- is not welcome here”.
That’s a pretty dramatic message to get, and you receive it without anyone having to necessarily say anything. It’s all about how people responded to you when you were simply being yourself.
So you might have this nagging sense of feeling unwelcome, like you don’t belong. The thing is, as long as you do not heal this inner conditioning, you’ll continue to feel like the odd one out everywhere. You’ll experience over and over again that being you isn’t ok, that you’re not wanted as you are.
I’m from a different planet, that’s why
The “feeling like I don’t belong” is a big theme in many HSP communities. Unfortunately, quite a number of HSP’s, instead of burrowing down to the root of this feeling and healing it, instead look for a kind of spiritual validation of it. There are oodles of stories and theories out there that boil down to “having been dropped off on the prisoner planet [earth]” or “belonging to a different galaxy and different star group” etc.
Now, the world is a much bigger place than anyone can encompass, so logically proving or disproving these ideas is completely impossible and beside the point. However, generally speaking, they only enhance the feeling and the trauma of “being unwanted and unwelcome”. Hanging on to the idea that you are actually a purple urchin rainbow being from galaxy Z, trapped on earth in a human body, may provide some SciFi escapist solace (especially when you’ve got the poster above your bed and spend a lot of time imagining being on different planets) but it doesn’t change your experience right here, right now.
Hence my point is not that such a line of thinking is necessarily wrong. Rather, it’s not really that helpful. Regardless of who you are and what your spiritual lineage is or isn’t, you are right here, right now, and to enjoy your life, it’s important to foster an inner sense of “I am exactly where I need to be”.
Not belonging and finding your exact tribe
Similar – and less exotic- things happen with a “label obsession” that is another common phenomenon. In different personality systems, you’d be administered different labels. Some sensitive people seem to have taken all the tests and carry around a long list of abbreviations that describe the tribe they are a part of. The only problem is, the longer the specific list of labels that describe you, the smaller the chance that you’ll find someone who has exactly that combination of labels too. Again, while you might have set out finding people “just like you” by figuring out your personality box(es), you can well end up feeling like a freak (again). None of this addresses the underlying pain, instead, it fortifies the “truth” of the pain and does nothing to heal it.
Again, I’m not argueing against labeling. Getting a sense of what type most resembles you can be very helpful. However, as a strategy to ease the pain of feeling like you don’t belong, it’s not that helpful necessarily. You might find a community with people “just like you”, yet when you spend enough time there, you’ll slowly start to sense all the ways that these people are different from you, and the sense of not belonging will creep in again.
In the end, there are usually some inner beliefs, emotions and blocks that dictate a sense of not belonging. The important thing to realize though that there is no external community that will make that pain disappear. You need to deal with the pain inside directly, or else it will follow you around.
I’m different, so I don’t belong
The thing is, in the end we’re all different, we’re all unique. Fostering a sense of belonging, will only work if you include your uniqueness in that sense of belonging. In other words, you won’t feel like you belong by finding people “exactly like you”, simply because there are none. You will however start to feel like you belong, when you accept that you were meant to be different.
How about practicing “being you no matter what” in a group of other heart-centered sensitives? Take a look at all that the Happy Sensitive Community has to offer here.