How To Deal With HSP Patterns: Addiction & Compulsion Recovery

How To Deal With HSP Patterns: Addiction & Compulsion Recovery

The last time I talked about highly
sensitive people, I briefly touched on how we may develop some strong patterns.
And then in the long run, after you’ve repeated your self-taught ways of
control again and again, you’ve developed strong patterns that are difficult to
break. And then it’s usually in your adult years you realize that these
patterns aren’t working for you, so you seek professional help to get
your freedom back and learn better ways to deal with your challenges. What is it
about being highly sensitive that makes us more at risk of developing these
maladaptive patterns that are difficult to break and how can we work on
overcoming these patterns? That’s what I’m going to be talking about in this video. Hey, you guys. My name is Daniel and my
wife and I love helping people with their mental health. If you’re into
understanding and working on your mental health too, make sure to subscribe to our
channel. All right! Well, let’s get right into
today’s topic. When you feel chilly and you shiver or you touch something sharp
and you pull away or you hear something loud and you cover your ears, your
nervous system is essentially picking up a stimulus and then you respond. This
whole thing around stimulus and response actually happens so much in our lives
even beyond these basic physiological reactions: when you feel sad, you might go
to sleep; when you feel bored, you might escape into something stimulating; when
you feel down about yourself worth, you might overwork yourself to create your
own worth; and when you notice all the things that could go wrong,
you might agree with the idea that “I’m not going to be okay.” However it is that you
choose to respond, your brain makes a connection between the original stimulus
and the resulting response and it makes that connection through what’s called a
neural pathway. Now, in the beginning, when you first respond in a certain way to a
given stimulus, that neural pathway may be pretty weak and flexible. At this
stage, it may feel like you’ve still got some control over all the different ways
that you could respond. But the more you access the same neural pathway again and
again, that neural pathway becomes stronger and stronger until it becomes
something like a neural superhighway. At this stage it may feel like you’ve got
no control over how you respond because your response happens so automatically.
That’s when you’re dealing with habitual thought patterns, compulsions, addictions,
and if you’ve got a whole set of these that negatively affect your life and
personality, then you’re dealing with disorders. Highly sensitive people are
more at risk of developing these patterns for two main reasons.
Number one: we feel discomfort more intensely, so that often comes with a
greater sense of urgency and pressure to find a way – any way – to just put an end to
our discomfort. In other words, it’s more difficult for us to wait or delay our
gratification to find a better long-term solution. And number two: because we often
experience everything in extremes, it’s more challenging for us to do things in
moderation. At times, we can get a bit obsessive, right? So, what if you feel
stuck with all of these patterns that aren’t doing you any good? Can you free
yourself from these patterns? It’s not going to be quick and easy, but, yes, you
definitely can and I’ve done it myself and neuroplasticity says you can do it
too. After you’ve identified the patterns in
your life that you don’t want to be ruled by, you’ll have to begin the long
and hard process of creating, nurturing, and strengthening other neural pathways,
building healthier patterns, all while no longer accessing your problematic ones.
This for sure will feel unnatural at first, but you’ve got to keep at it. Now,
let’s say for a good chunk of time you’ve been able to refrain from
accessing your problematic neural pathways. Do these neural pathways then
magically disappear? I mean, I do believe in miracles… but in most cases, no, they
stay with you for the rest of your life. They just become dormant. These dormant
neural pathways are sleeping giants that can be reawakened at full force if you
access them again, even a little bit. But stressful times makes it extra
challenging to do the right thing that many of us revert back to our old ways
and feel stuck all over again. This is called a relapse. So many people are
unsuccessful when it comes to overcoming their maladaptive patterns because,
without even being aware of it, they keep on relapsing again and again and again.
And after so many unsuccessful attempts, they lose hope and start to believe that
they’re stuck with being ruled by all of these patterns for the rest of their
life. But that’s not true. You’ve just got to get better at relapse prevention.
Eventually, I’ll make a video providing some practical strategies for relapse
prevention, but for this video, I’m just introducing the concept. First, you’re
going to want to create some safe boundaries for yourself from the
avoidable things that just aren’t worth keeping in your life that cause you to
relapse. For example, a lot of recovered alcoholics don’t even take a sip of
alcohol because they know that’s all it takes for them to relapse. Just like that,
you may need to refrain from even having a sip of whatever your unwanted
pattern might be. And it might take you many repeat attempts at tightening up
your boundaries before you develop boundaries that really work for you in
the long run. Now, when I say avoidable things that
aren’t worth keeping in your life, I’m not talking about things like other
people getting upset, other people having different opinions, or uncomfortable
things that your nervous system picks up on. These kinds of things are just normal
parts of life that you can’t expect to block out all the time in order to keep
yourself from reacting poorly. Think about it. If you never let yourself face
these things, how are you going to expect them to be less overwhelming for you the
next time they come up. You’ll be left equally incapable and easily triggered
every time because you didn’t put in the work of increasing your tolerance for
these things that stress you out. So, as uncomfortable as it is, exposing
yourself to the things that stress you out is also a part of relapse prevention.
And lastly, it really helps to work through all of this with an
understanding community that believes in you. Thanks for watching. Now that I’ve
laid out what I feel is a lot of the foundation, in future videos you can
expect me and my wife to go more into specific mental health challenges and
talk about how to overcome them. And if you found this video helpful, make sure
to give it a like. And don’t forget to subscribe to our channel for more videos
on mental health. See you next time. Bye.


  1. vids about HSPs are gonna be way helpful for me … because i’ve always thought i was different than other kids when i was a kid n even now i just realized that it’s just who i am even tho it’s still difficult especially as a guy and among people who think sensitivity is something that needs to be fixed.. so I appreciate it
    thank you buddy💜..

  2. Awesome video! I've been fighting extremely hard with this patterns, it's a bit confusing when you are both HSP and HSS, the ideal level of stimulation (not too boring nor overstimulating) is pretty narrow and it's really easy to trap yourself… Happifully God has helped me all along the way blessing my efforts, may God help you guys too!

  3. I am very highly sensitive…that’s kinda why I don’t have a whole lot of friends and having high anxiety I get teased a lot! Even at the age of 34…and Eddy feels sooo bad… 😕

  4. This was very helpful, thank you. I'm going through this moment of my life (26) while I have to face all the overwhelming patterns I learned when I was younger and then change them cause I'm an adult now and I realise it's not healthy that my mind keeps tricking me. It's not easy basically, it's harder for HSPs. We need support for this, even if we often want to do just by ourselves. That's why I say thank you for your work! It's accurate and passionate and this matters.

  5. Looking forward to your new video. I have OCD. And I have unhealthy relations with my family members. That holds me back from my own life. For now I've been living other's life, not mine. Thnks to Psych2go and your channel I've learnt that I'me a highly sensetive person. So hope to see more info on the topic you're working. Thank you

  6. Nice to met you yesterday at HENRY store VANCOUVER, remember me, I will tell you my story about mental illness, a long time ago I got free from 2 years depression, JESUS set me free instantly I fell the electricity from my head to toe when the pastor pray for me and when I surrender my life to HIM, up to now the depression never came back again for almost 30 – 40 years and HIS joy give me strength. And the scriptures said, but seek first the kingdom of GOD and HIS righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
    And my GOD shall supply all your need according to HIS riches in glory by CHRIST JESUS
    GBU for ever, the nice couple keeps it up.

  7. I left California abandon the LOML and came back home because I started to have anxiety attack way to often! My escape from it all was to die!

    I don’t really want to die but my mind has made that an option… and in times of a lot of overwhelming feeling my thoughts can get super dark..

    I want help, I want my bf to understand. Please keep the video coming!

  8. I am kinda sure I have HSP but I want to really conform it…..I'll be relieved….so can you help me in anyway

  9. I think your channel would do better if it focused on a specific topic. Is is Travel? Christianity? Lifestyle? Mental Health? This blended "We The Kims" brand is overall not very compelling. I enjoyed the channel when it was watching beautiful people at beautiful places, not this. There are better channels dedicated to experts explaining mental health issues. I feel like many people (including me) now just watch this channel now waiting to see this impending disaster unfold.

  10. Might I still be HSP if I really enjoy violent movies and horrors?
    Even though I startle very often?

    I have most of other symptoms.

  11. I am a Highly Sensentive teenager, and I'm having some troubles at school. I get 'bullied' and my friends don't pay me (in my eyes) any respect for my choices and interests. This video and the other one you did have really helped me to understand myself more and how to deal with me. I hope there will be more soon. Thanks!

  12. Hey, Dan!
    I recently finished a book called "Switch On Your Brain" by Dr. Caroline Leaf. She is a Christian Cognitive Neurologist. She connects scripture and science, which is very refreshing because I believe that science and God go hand-in-hand, and were never rivals to begin with. The book is interesting because it talks about how our toxic thoughts affect our mind, body, & spirit.

    The book also comes with a "21 Day Brain Detox", where we work on a single and specific toxic thought, we break it down, and replace it with a positive thought. I am on day 18, and I've been working on having more confidence– changing my "what if" anxieties to "even if" statements (trusting God no matter what happens, and knowing I am secure in Him). Over the past 18 days, I've identified the root and origin of my unconfidence, and I've been replacing my worries with scripture (ex. when I think "I'm afraid to talk to them– what if they think I'm awkward?" I replace it with "God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and self-discipline.")

    I am really interested to hear what you think of Dr. Leaf's work! She also has a lot of videos on YouTube!

    God bless!

  13. This is amazing video.. But its very hard to stop it.. Sone toxic thoughts. I dunno if i ever gonna breakt through it because… Its not yay time now for me

  14. Thank-you very much for these kind of videos! You have a very positive and good energy doing videos! I really like it, thank-you! Really like this channel! Full of joy! 🙂

  15. the only thing that is helping me when I am overwhelmed is food…But unfortunatelly, I can´t stop eating, so for me it is much more harder to give up this habit…..

  16. Didn't expect much at first due to the floating music. But you gave me some great tips, ideas and perspectives in a short time, thanks.

  17. I am so grateful for Dr. Elaine's discovery.. I am also so grateful for your channel. For a long time I have felt something was wrong with me, trying to figure out if I had bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, or some kind of spectrum disorder. But now I realize what I have. It puts my mind at so much ease and brings me so much peace. I hope to see in the coming decades that high sensitivity becomes a household phrase.

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