Organizing Groups for the Highly Sensitive Person

Highly Sensitive Person Groups

Although Highly Sensitive People (HSP) make up 15-20% of the population, we often feel misunderstood and isolated from our Sensitive community leading to feelings of low self-esteem and depression. 

Spending time with others who "get you" is incredibly healing and validating, as I've seen in clients who attend my HSP groups.  

If possible, I encourage other therapists to offer a safe space for your HSP clients to gather in like-minded community, learn more about their Sensitivity and discover tools to manage overwhelm.  

Group Components

Although the format of each group can vary widely, below are some of the components that I regularly incorporate into my HSP groups: 

  • Self-Compassion practices to help soothe internalized feelings of difference or struggle. 
  • Psychoeducation about the High Sensitivity trait so they can learn more about their unique needs. 
  • Quiet time to reflect and integrate insights from group through journaling, art and silent breaks.   
  • Allow time for group members to share their personal experiences of being Highly Sensitive.  Validate and normalize the difficulties of being Highly Sensitive while helping them uncover their Sensitive Strengths (creativity, empathy, etc). 
  • Self-exploration around topics such as childhood experiences, relationships and work difficulties.  Give group members an opportunity to filter past experiences through an HSP lens.  
  • Share your favorite self-regulation tools to help calm overstimulation such as mindfulness and breathing techniques. 
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Reference Books

The books below can be used to learn more about the trait of Sensory Processing Sensitivity and get inspiration for your group activities.  The Highly Sensitive Person's Workbook offers a step-by-step guide to starting your first HSP group.  

Additional Resources