This PSA is being brought to you through the eyes of experience! Don't ignore physical sensations (I don't care for the word "symptoms"), but instead pay attention to what they may be trying to tell you.
Case in point: Me! I spent a great deal of my life in fear. Fearful childhood experiences, fearful school and then work experiences, fearful social experiences...and I never understood why. I was always told to "toughen up," shamed for my sensitivity, perceived shyness, and easily triggered emotion.
I've been reading a wonderful book by Dr. Judith Orloff, The Empath's Survival Guide: Life Strategies for Sensitive People, and it has changed my life. Now I understand! This book "appeared" just when needed (don't ya love when that happens!), as I'm going through a deeply self-reflective process, learning new systems and patterns of thought.
I spent my earlier life in fear because I was a highly sensitive soul in a very dysfunctional household, My mind, body and spirit are all hyper-tuned to energy around me. The result of this untreated life-long sensitivity as an empath resulted in some unpleasant physical reactions (off-balance endocrine system, especially adrenals; frequent headaches; tinnitus; IBS), which I now know are stress responses to energy overload. What a relief - I am neither a freak of nature or truly ill!
I've been working on this idea with a couple of trusted healers as well as my own intuition and guidance, and now I finally understand that there is nothing at all "wrong" with me! Rather, I am learning tools and strategies to ease the stress, tone down the body's response to energy, and change my perception/viewpoint of what is going on. I'm learning to see the tremendous blessings in being empathic, and far from needing to "toughen up," I would benefit by expanding my abilities and awareness!
I'm sharing this because I know for sure I'm not the only person who has or is going through this process. If you are experiencing physical results, do some research to find out what your body (an expert in its own state of wellness) is trying to tell you. Get bodywork, energy healing or spiritual counseling. Learn ways of moving the Qi (energy) through your body with QiGong, Tai Chi, Yoga, dance. Meditate - definitely meditate!
Accept who - and HOW - you are, and rejoice in all that you can be!