Does this sound like your teen?
They feel everything deeply and don’t know what to do with their BIG emotions
They tend to get overwhelmed easily by stress at school or with relationships
They withdraw/isolate when they’re overwhelmed, perhaps retreating to their room or a public bathroom to cry or regroup
They are a perfectionist or people-pleaser, and can be strongly self-critical
They are more sensitive to busy places, hot/cold temperatures, scratchy fabrics or tags, loud noises, or smells than others
They may struggle with changes/transitions and making decisions (especially if there is time pressure)
They need alone time to decompress after a long or busy day
They take things personally and often end up with hurt feelings
They frequently feel worried, anxious, depressed or emotionally exhausted and don’t know how to cope
Are they also…?
Smart, intuitive and perceptive, often noticing nuances that others miss
Highly empathetic, compassionate and considerate of others’ feelings
Creative in one or more areas of their life (art, music, writing, etc.)
Deeply moved by art or nature
A quick learner or a deep thinker
Your teen may be a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP)
Don’t worry, that doesn’t mean there’s anything wrong with them. High sensitivity, or Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS), is a completely normal trait that occurs in 15-20% of the population and has been well researched and documented by Dr. Elaine Aron and many others. It is not a disorder or diagnosis, but rather an innate personality trait that occurs naturally as part of a person’s inborn temperament.
“Highly sensitive” can sometimes have a negative connotation in our society, but it does not mean that your teen is weak or broken in any way. HSP’s simply have a more finely tuned nervous system than the rest of the population, allowing them to pick up on and deeply process information/stimuli that doesn’t even register for most people. This is actually a gift, once an HSP knows how to work with it.
Highly sensitive people tend to be amazingly perceptive, deeply caring, wonderful humans who can sometimes get overwhelmed by busy environments, stressful situations, or their own emotions…if they don’t learn how to manage them.
As a highly sensitive therapist, I get it…
I know what it’s like to grow up through those difficult teenage years as a highly sensitive person. An HSPs’ tendency to process everything deeply can often leave them feeling stressed out, emotionally exhausted, and wishing they could just “let it go” and be like everyone else.
I started this group to create a supportive community for highly sensitive teens to meet and connect with each other, with the goal of passing on the knowledge I’ve gained throughout my life and years as a therapist. I use a variety of research-backed techniques, like Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), mindfulness, and nature-based therapy to teach teens the skills they need to manage stress and big emotions so they don’t lead to overwhelm, anxiety, and depression. As well as what to do if they’re already stuck there and want to feel better.
What if your teen could...
Learn to manage their BIG emotions without getting overwhelmed and acting out or withdrawing suddenly
Get off the emotional roller coaster and calm down when things feel intense, rather than escalating
Stop worrying and feeling stressed about school so that their natural intelligence can shine through
Learn how to communicate their needs proactively, instead of shutting down or getting snappy when they end up overwhelmed
Connect with peers who understand them and learn to use their sensitivity to build healthy relationships
Develop more confidence and self-esteem so they can make smart choices based on their values, rather than peer pressure
Stop feeling like they’re broken, have to hide their sensitivity or “toughen up” all the time and embrace their gifts
Location: Boulder Healing Hub
Start Date: Group enrollment is rolling, fill out an interest form below to find out the next opening
Day/Time: Monday evenings*
Investment: $50 per group, paid monthly (a portion of the cost may be reimbursable by insurance)
Group is limited to 8 participants. Enrollment is by application and phone call only.
*If Mondays don’t work for your teen, fill out an interest form below anyway and let me know what might work better. If enough interest is gathered for another day/time, a second section of the group can be started to support more people.