November 2012: Comfort Zone ONLINE
On August 30, I had an unusual dream. Here it is, minus a few details.
You could analyze this dream in all sorts of ways. Why do two men acknowledge me so positively, but it is a woman who ends up running things following a ritual also involving women? Why the emphasis on simply being in nature? These may have to do with my personal next step, but I take dreams very seriously, and cannot avoid the possibility that the dream indicates I should be writing to you about this.
Why this particular subject, however? The dream emphasizes two ideas: a step, and that it be authentic. About the first idea, next steps in general, perhaps the dream brings up this issue because HSPs can be by nature slow to take their next step. As just one example, they wait until the last minute to sign up for HSP Gatherings or other events for them (drives organizers crazy). Again, we are naturally slow because we are processing everything carefully before making our move. Of course if we are familiar with the situation or see an opportunity or danger that others have not yet recognized, we may act faster than others. But what we and others notice more is our pondering or our hesitancy to take a risk. And it can indeed lead to missing out on life itself, because not to act is in a sense still a decision, in that the opportunity passes. Pardon me if I use that awful, stress-inducing quote, but it's true: As far as we know, "life is not a rehearsal." This is it.
The second emphasis, however, that it be an authentic next step, seemed even more important in the dream. In a sense, it presents a "tension of opposites," to use Jung's term, that all HSPs must manage. To make an authentic step requires you to be a true HSP and reflect carefully on your next step! Indeed, if one's authentic self means your core, always-true-of-you self, that would be above all your innate personality, and your next step must certainly be grounded in your sensitivity. Other than that, I cannot tell you what, for you, would be an authentic next step. Probably it would not be the same as a non-HSP. You may be feeling that you simply must do something about global warming or some injustice in the world, but you will have to do it your way, a way that does not stress you out.
Another way to think of a next step is that it should probably involve "following your bliss" in the sense Joseph Campbell spoke of (not as always fun, but as the thing you feel you were meant to do). You might enjoy watching him talking about that, about two minutes into this four-minute YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d_iEWwLphYg
If You Kind of Know the Next Step but Are Struggling with a Decision
Even when we have a sense of where to go, we HSPs see so many possible paths and consequences of taking them that we can get quite stuck on choosing one path and foregoing another. HSPs tend to struggle so much with decisions that we come to hate them, and so we can delay. But remember, you tend to make good decisions, and delaying is okay while actively trying to decide, but it is not okay if you are simply avoiding the hard work of making a good decision. Maybe I can help with a list of what helps me:
When You Have No Idea of a Next Step
What if you have no possibilities to ponder, no idea what your next step should be. Maybe it sounds too scary. That's why I liked how the dream ended. You do not have to make the next step be off of the high dive. Spending more time in nature as a next step is a simple, nonthreatening, true-to-my-sensitivity next step that cannot go wrong and might lead to the next step after that. Maybe it is simply finally doing whatever it takes to have more time for yourself.
I would let the question rest gently on my mind and try doing a few easy things I would not ordinarily do, like visiting a place I have never been. I recently visited the Taos Pueblo on a whim and it helped clarify my next step. Or I would take time to sit in nature, or watch for a person I would like to get know better. As an introvert, that's a big deal, but following a whim to chat with a stranger or get to know someone better can offer unexpected openings. Find a seminar or conference that would attract people who share your values and interests. Pay attention to your dreams. And just be patient. There is always a next step. A tree doesn't have to figure out how to grow, and your basic self, your tree self, the one that shares 35% of your DNA with the oaks and pines and magnolias, it also knows which way to grow next.
November 2012 Articles:
November 2012 Articles: