How To Handle Other People's Bad Moods When You're A Super-Sensitive Person

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woman protecting her face from friends blowing bubbles

I didn’t realize I was a sensitive person until my late 20s.

Due to lasting health issues and minimal relief from western medicine, I attended a Reiki class, which kick-started my understanding of sensitivity. It turns out my illnesses were compounded by being sensitive and not knowing how to deal with that sensitivity appropriately.

My Reiki training along with my continued study in the martial art of Aikido, which focuses on redirecting and dissipating oncoming energy and movement, propelled me deeper into the world of subtle energy and how to maneuver within it.

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Understanding sensitivity

Sensitivity can be considered the range of our ability to readily respond to changes in our environment. We can be less or more impacted by the accumulation of residual energy from internal and external factors like noise, colors, thoughts, emotions (from self and others), electromagnetic waves, and more.

Since humans are made of energy, we either filter or absorb and then process all these intangible aspects coming toward us. Depending upon our aptitude for filtering or absorbing and processing this information usually indicates how well we respond to more intense situations.

Granted, we all have a tipping point where we can become overwhelmed especially if we don’t have surefire ways to side-step, process, or repel aspects that otherwise take us off center.

There are a few things we need to understand about our sensitivity before we can proactively move through a typical day, let alone deal with someone else’s bad mood while maintaining our mental and emotional stability.

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Remember, everything has energy

We need to give ourselves credit for successfully dealing with all we encounter throughout the day. Our brains fabulously filter out seemingly superfluous things and prioritize the important things we need to focus on. Normally that is a good thing for us.

Subtly, the things we don’t give our direct attention to affect us as an undercurrent. The colors and textures in a room, the buildup of energy in a space, and the background music playing in a restaurant…all impact us physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.  

Outside factors that affect our sensitivity

Our sensitivity range is affected by our physical, mental, and emotional states. For instance, if we’re hungry, in pain, need sleep, or in an overall foul mood, our sensitivity threshold will be limited.

Likewise, if we’re feeling rested, just ate a good meal, or are inspired or laughing, our sensitivity threshold will be expanded.

Know what is your responsibility — and what is not

Depending upon our upbringing and the patterns we engage in, we’ve all developed different mindsets and expectations. As such, we need to hold ourselves accountable for what we bring to the table that affects our days — both positively and negatively.

Are we arriving at a situation in a space of peace? Have we communicated properly what we need? 

At the same time, we cannot pick up other people’s emotions or challenges and make them our own. While we can objectively provide feedback and assistance where practical, each person has their own set of triggers and response mechanisms.

We need to let them find ways to self-soothe and reset while supporting them without taking on their “stuff.”

When we talk about sensitivity in general, I find it helpful in my practice to understand if the sensitivity experienced can be neutralized or lessened in some way and potentially arrive at a point where those super-sensitive situations become less common.  

In most of my work with sensitive clients — and we are ALL sensitive to some degree — there are several ways we can help level out that sensitivity if we are willing to spend a little extra time and attention.

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Here are seven methods to manage sensitivity levels so people's bad moods don't bring you down:

1. Set appropriate boundaries

Each interaction we have with others guides them on how we wish to be treated, spoken to, included, excluded, etc. We teach people how to interact with us via our clear verbal communication, body language, and alignment of each.

How we treat ourselves is how others will treat us. If boundaries are crossed, we address the situations as soon as we can so future infractions are minimized or eliminated.

Setting up boundaries with others is a must-do activity. Some people may adhere closely to the lines we set, others might push the boundaries a bit, and others could completely ignore them.

Regardless of how others respond, having the boundary itself is a firm baseline for us to learn how we best operate in the world.

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2. Develop a daily clearing/reflection practice

If we’re sensitive people, we usually need time by ourselves to work through daily occurrences so the residuals from them can flow out of our energetic fields.

Many of us are too busy throughout the day to take the time to process emotions, thoughts, and situations, and that excess energy builds up in our muscles, joints, minds, and emotions. Without providing consistent exit points for these items to flow out of, we are inviting physical and mental disease into our lives and increased sensitivity.

I’ve seen fabulous progress in people who decide to regularly meditate, journal, paint, exercise, read inspirational passages, or do some other reflection practice. In these moments, we give ourselves the gift of clarity and eliminate a buildup of tension over time.

Also, in these moments we learn what our triggers are and can develop tactics to employ when those triggers are pulled. 

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3. Create a neutral mindset

The moment we label an emotion or situation as positive or negative, we already place ourselves at a disadvantage. We’re now either looking to hold onto or to repel that energy. It is best to try and be as neutral as possible, taking nothing personally.

Our preferences around a situation are important. For example, noting if we like or dislike a situation or which emotions or thoughts arise. Yet, we want to be able to detach a bit, so we can be clear and creative in addressing the situation.

When clients have employed the above items into their lives or even make a concerted effort for a week or three, they already start to feel and respond to life differently. Having these above items in place sets us up to live our lives more successfully and calmly.

Nevertheless, even with these self-care practices in place, there will still be times when we find ourselves being super responsive to someone else’s mood.

4. Acknowledge their feelings

Sometimes people who are in bad moods are looking for validation of how they’re feeling— and they may not even realize it.

In these cases, having that acknowledgment can help them move to find a solution, or it could simply help them feel heard and stop their bad mood altogether. Other times, calling attention to how they’re feeling and what they’re expressing may help them realize they’re exuding more intensity than intended.

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5. Create space

If we’re not able to acknowledge the person’s feelings, a statement like the following can be helpful: “It seems you’re upset about this situation, maybe we can discuss it in more detail after we’ve had a chance to think about this more.”

If leaving the space is not a good option, then having to make a phone call or concentrate on a work task can be sufficient. Also sharing that we may not be in the best emotional space ourselves to provide support can curtail the mood a little, or at least minimize conversation or interaction.



6. Set up energetic force fields

We can visualize and/or intend that an energetic force field (just like we see in Star Wars movies) be placed around us and the other person separately.

We can see in our mind’s eye a bubble of colored light or a column of light that keeps our energies clear and protected within approximately four to six feet of our physical bodies.

We can also ask our angels and guides, or whomever we may associate as Source/God to assist in setting up force fields of Light separating a room or section of the room.

7. Send them love

This option seems like both a cliché and a tough item to action. But love really is the answer to all things. People who are hurting heal through love.

Simply whispering or saying within our minds “I love you” to ourselves and the person can help alleviate a bad mood — sometimes immediately. When we send people any thought or emotion, that person experiences a subtle, unconscious physical response.

We can let our imagination guide us in ways to send someone love using words or visualizing the emotion of love from our hearts to theirs or inviting our angels to fill that person’s aura and physical body with love. Love can find a way.

Dealing with someone who is of low temper is as much about our own well-being as it is theirs, especially if we know we are sensitive, to begin with.

Making sure we are taking consistent care of our emotional and mental health can help us neutralize our mood or remain unaffected by someone else’s pessimism.

In a best-case scenario, we can also uplift the person directly or indirectly, and ease them into a better space, while keeping our good feelings intact.

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Pamela Aloia is a certified Grief Coach, Reiki master/teacher, and author helping people become better versions of themselves through individual sessions, energy work, meditation, and more.