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Introverts have hidden talents people disregard in modern society

Introverts have hidden talents people disregard in modern society Introverts have hidden talents people disregard in modern society
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First Aron interviewed thirty-nine people who described themselves as being either introverted or easily overwhelmed by stimulation. She asked them about the movies they liked, their first memories, relationships with parents, friendships, love lives, creative activities, philosophical and religious views. Based on these interviews, she created a voluminous questionnaire that she gave to several large groups of people. Then she boiled their responses down to a constellation of twenty-seven attributes. She named the people who embodied these attributes “highly sensitive”.

Some of these twenty-seven attributes were familiar from Kagan and others’ work. For example, highly sensitive people tend to be keen observers who look before they leap. They arrange their lives in ways that limit surprises. They’re often sensitive to sights, sounds, smells, pain, coffee. They have difficulty when being observed (at work, say, or performing at a music recital) or judged for general worthiness (dating, job interviews).

But there were also new insights. The highly sensitive tend to be  philosophical or spiritual in their orientation, rather than materialistic or  hedonistic. They dislike small talk. They often describe themselves as creative or intuitive. They  dream vividly, and can often recall their dreams the next day. They love music, nature, art, physical beauty. They feel exceptionally strong  emotions—sometimes acute bouts of joy, but also sorrow, melancholy, and fear.

Highly sensitive people also process information about their  environ1nents—both physical and elnotional—unusually deeply. They tend to notice subtleties that others miss—another person’s shift in  mood, say, or a lightbulb burning a touch too brightly.

Recently a group of scientists at Stony Brook University tested this finding by showing two pairs of photos (of a fence and some bales of  hay) to eighteen people lying inside fMRI machines. In one pair the  photos were noticeably different from each other, and in the other pair  the difference was much more subtle. For each pair, the scientists asked  whether the second photo was the same as the first. They found that  sensitive people spent more time than others looking at the photos with  the subtle differences. Their brains also showed more activity in regions that help to make associations between those images and other stored information. In other words, the sensitive people were processing the  photos at a more elaborate level than their peers, reflecting more on  those fenceposts and haystacks. 

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