Being highly sensitive and performing under pressure

I don’t know about you, but watching the TV programme Masterchef  brings out opposite sides of my being highly sensitive.

It showcases so much of what I love – colours, combinations and creativity.  And the joy of seeing someone hit a potential they didn’t know they had.

Alongside, though, are contestants having to perform while being watched and judged.  And having to talk to camera while wanting to focus and needing to get on.  All things that HSPs often find difficult.

Then there’s the time pressure.  In the time it takes a contestant to conjure up a meal, I’d only have prepped the vegetables.  But they would be beautifully sliced, diced or chopped!

As for being thrown into a professional kitchen … nooooo!!  All that movement, speed and noise, is a recipe for sensory overload.

And that’s aside from being thrown in at the deep end!  We HSPs tend to be very aware of what we don’t know.  We like to learn and find our confidence rather than ‘wing it’.

I used to think these downsides were my weaknesses, my failings.  But since finding out I’m an HSP, I realise it’s just the way I’m wired.

My system needs – and thrives on – time to analyse, organise and plan.  I like to look at things from all angles.  But the time  that takes often isn’t available or convenient (to others).

Look backing, I can see many ‘failures’ were inevitable.  Because my system and its way of operating were at odds with my environment and its demands.

In contrast, when my system and my surroundings are in sync, the world is a different place.

That tends to happen when I’ve honoured my system and its needs.  Recognised what energises or soothes it, as opposed to what makes it jangle or drains it.

When system and environment are aligned, that’s when I’ve found peace, opportunities and connection (with myself and others).  And that feels like success to me.

What’s your Masterchef equivalent?  What fits and doesn’t fit your highly sensitive system?  What do you and your system need to be in sync?