Then you might just be a highly sensitive person.
The highly sensitive person doesn't just hear words; they feel them. They don't just listen to someone speaking; they feel their expressions and the deeper meaning behind what they're saying. The key word here is feel - and they feel it very deeply, very strongly, very acutely.
In today's societies, highly sensitive people have often been taught that their reactions or responses are not acceptable. Boys, in particular, are taught that they need to be tougher; men are told to "man up". Girls or women are often written off as hysterical or overreacting.
In an attempt to funnel what they are feeling into something accepted by society, they will often turn to the arts. These are the people who can make you feel the emotions behind their guitar playing; the people who can bring tears to your eyes by their heartfelt lyrics; the singer who can pull at your heartstrings when they sing.
These are the painters who paint portraits with eyes that are haunting in their depth; photographers who see the sunsets or beaches or mountain peaks as living, breathing waves of color and energy; artists who bring objects to vibrant life.
These are the sculptures, the inventors, the creators of things that change our life or our perception of life.
These are the novelists who funnel their pain, their ecstasy, their agony, their triumphs and their defeats into the characters they create, who cause those characters to jump off the pages at us and who remain with us long after we've finished the book.
These are actors who can get inside another person's skin and portray them as multi-dimensional human beings with positive and negative attributes. They are those actors who can convey a feeling to us simply through their eyes or their expressions.
Without a place to funnel this sensitivity, HSP's may turn to alcohol, drugs, food, shopping, gambling or sex in an attempt to stifle their emotions or dull their senses.
They often end up with self-centered people or narcissists. The narcissist needs others to recognize them and the highly sensitive person easily picks up on their emotions and needs. They are often the spouse who tolerates emotional or physical abuse and when they object, they are told they are "too sensitive".
They might retreat from the world for various reasons: they might gravitate toward jobs that require them to be alone for much of the time, or they might shrink from society as a way to protect themselves.
Often they are right under our noses and they have become so adept at hiding their sensitivity that others don't realize how deeply they feel. They may be in all walks of life, though they are less likely to be extroverts or in positions surrounded by people. When they are in positions in which they are surrounded by others, it might be in the form of a priest, clergy, rabbi or in a position in which they are called to help others.
Vicki's Key, is one such person. As a child, she was told that she was too sensitive, her feelings often overlooked or downplayed by parents, teachers and other adults. But as an adult, she was trained to use those sensitivities.
When highly sensitive people are taught how to use their skills instead of seeking to destroy their feelings, they often become clairvoyant (one who sees something happening beyond their physical presence), clairaudient (one who hears sounds or words beyond that which is within hearing range), clairsentient (one who feels something happening), clairscent (one who smells something not in their physical range), clairtangency (one who perceives history by touching objects), clairgustant (one who tastes without the food or object being in their mouth), or clairempathic (those who can feel the emotions of another).
All of us have these capabilities at one time or another. We might watch a movie in which someone is hurt and for that instant, feel their pain. A mother might be so tuned into her children that she senses when something is not right with them. A widow might smell her dead husband's cologne in an area he had never been in.
In Vicki's Key, Vicki is trained as a remote viewer, or psychic spy. She is clairvoyant, clairaudient and clairscent, which means she can see things happening in her mind's eye, she can hear what is happening, and she can often smell something associated with that scene in her mind.
How does she know - and how does the CIA know - that she is not off her rocker? Why would they employ such a person?
In the real psychic spy programs - operated now in several dozen countries, including the United States, Russia, China and India - individuals are tested. Those with psychic tendencies - any of the "clairs" mentioned above - go on to more stringent testing and training. They advance over a period of years.
In an age in which superpowers can easily program satellites to hone in on a specific GPS so Intelligence and military can see what is happening anywhere in the world, there are still blind spots: inside buildings or structures. If terrorists planned their attacks outside, satellites could view them - but not yet hear them. If terrorists are planning their attacks inside an apartment building, a cave, a house, an office, they are often in a blind spot. It is then that psychic spies - or remote viewers, as the government prefers to call them - are instrumental in Intelligence gathering. What they see, hear and experience is then provided to analysts who use their data as a piece of the puzzle. Their information is verified on the ground whenever possible.
So how do you know if you are a highly sensitive person?
You can take this test: Are You Highly Sensitive?
You can read this article on 20 Signs You're a Highly Sensitive Person.
Read this article on 16 Habits of Highly Sensitive People.
Read this article on 15 Signs You are a Highly Sensitive Person.
Or simply search "highly sensitive person" to come up with a long list of articles and quizzes.
p.m.terrell is the author of more than 20 books including the award-winning Black Swamp Mysteries series featuring remote viewer/ psychic spy Vicki Boyd. For more information on her books and to purchase them through amazon, visit www.pmterrell.com.