On Being Gifted
The Gifted Adult
Blessing or Curse?
Shyness & Introversion
On Personality Types
On Psychology, etc.
Counseling & Therapy
Choosing a Therapist
On Life, in General
Dreams & Wishes
Putting it All Together
Dedications & Thanks
A Gallery of Links
A few words about the person who created this site
"You're supposed to have an About Me page!" someone told me, quite a few years ago.
If you made it as far as this page, I'm impressed! And if you came here first-- perhaps out of curiosity-- then I'll just say "welcome." The contents of this web site speak pretty accurately of where my mind is, and where many of my interests lie-- as far as thinking and philosophizing goes. Of course, there are more aspects to a person than their interests "du jour."
Ironically, this is the oldest page on the site, dating back to early 1995. Well, not exactly-- this page is the 247th reincarnation of a "web profile" page I used to have on AOL. About the only thing the current version has in common with the original, is that it's an attempt at self-disclosure, rather than my usual effort to dispense information about a particular topic. As such, it has always been the most difficult section for me to write, but here goes an attempt to describe the "human."
I am a 50-something Danish national living in the historic Victorian seaport of Port Townsend, WA, situated at the tip of the peninsula where the Straits of Juan de Fuca "turns the corner" and becomes the Puget Sound. I have lived here since October 2006, and can say that I have truly found "my place," from a geographical perspective.
Prior to living in Port Townsend, I spent many years living in Central Texas, with a few occasional breaks to Dallas, Phoenix and Portland, OR. I am ultimately a "cool weather person," who has never quite felt comfortable or "at home" in tropical climates. Fortunately, I have no problems with Seasonal Affective Disorder!
I have already had my ostensible mid-life crisis, although I tend to regard it more as a "mid-life epiphany." On the other hand, I sometimes wonder if my whole life has been one long "mid-life crisis." I seem to have learned much, yet I spend so much time "looking for a clue."
It seems that society likes to label anyone who "reinvents" themselves as "a person with a crisis." Society also thinks it's a "crisis" when someone's focus shifts from one of "living to please the world" to one of "living to please themself." At the same time, there is a plethora of self-help books that tell us it's "bad" to be stuck in a rut. Strikes me that they don't have any more of a "clue" than I do.
All content Copyright ©1995-2012 Peter Messerschmidt & Inner Reflections. All Rights Reserved.
Like many HSPs, I have struggled with relationships of all kinds. My relationships within my family of origin were "distant," at best; difficult, at worst. My deep and true friendships have been few and far between-- mostly I have felt "not understood," in the company of others. As an introvert, I prefer my friends one at a time, rather than in groups.
I was married quite young, but it did not last. I had other romantic relationships, but they also did not last. I have experienced dysfunctionality-- in myself, and in those around me, both up close, and from a bit of a distance. However, I don't consider past relationships to be "failures" so much as learning experiences.
Throughout, I have stayed loyal to the belief that Love is the most important thing we have, and I finally reconnected with Sarah-- the great love of my life who's also my best friend-- in my mid-40's... someone I'd actually known since my teens. Although there is no such thing as an "effortless" relationship, I have to say that being married to a fellow HSP has made a huge difference in both our lives. After all, nobody "gets" what it's like to be highly sensitive... more than another highly sensitive person.
Had I been young today, I would probably have been one of those kids school psychologists freak out over after finding condoms, a dead piranha and diskettes with bomb-making instructions in their backpack. What those "experts" wouldn't have realized is that I wouldn't have been building a bomb, but learning how to disarm one, just in case. And you just never know when a piranha might come in handy.....
I have tried working in the mainstream of life. I even achieved some measure of "success," but found that the world's "ideal" of what I "should be" rather lacking, and it left me with a large hollow space in my soul. I have tried being in business management and I have tried being broke. I didn't care for either one. Most of my first 15 years in the workforce were spent doing things heavily related to sales and marketing-- a horrible "misfit" for an introverted HSP. Ironically, now that I work at something that resembles a "calling," those old finance and marketing skills have come back to serve me well.
As the 20th century came towards a close, I was in the middle of reinventing myself-- much of which involved making healthier choices. These days I'm a member of the "new economy," and can best describe myself as a "patchwork economist." I'm a writer, web marketer, rare postage stamp dealer, beach comber, business consultant, "solopreneur" coach, psychodemographic trend observer, cereal box psychologist, eBay "junque" trader, event organizer and a student of-- and commentator on-- the human condition. Special interests include the psychology of marketing and economics, adult giftedness, personality typing, Highly Sensitive People, human relationships, the enneagram, self-actualization, nature, photography, reading, writing, as well as assorted general weirdness.
After a lengthy struggle, I have made peace with the idea that natural talent doesn't have a darn thing to do with being able to make a living, within the parameters of modern society. Being highly intelligent doesn't have squat to do with it, either. Heck, the world's smartest man is a part-time bouncer in New Jersey.
Someone once said: "Do what you love, the money will follow." Maybe I am cynical, but I have been watching the rear-view mirror for many years, and usually the only thing I find there are friends and relatives asking for help and handouts. Perhaps they are there because I am a helper and healer by nature, evidently providing calm and rest to those in anguish and distress.
As part of my "reinvention process," I helped my ego get a "divorce" from society's mad "rollercoaster of materialism." I don't give a rat's patootie about "keeping up with the Joneses," and I have no interest in erstwhile "ego-consumables." I am on a continuing mission to "simplify" and "downsize" my life, in search of my own version of "sustainability."
I have nothing against money, and have no desire to pursue an ascetic lifestyle. I don't feel that we need to choose and embrace poverty in order to live a spiritual and meaningful life. However, as humanity unconsciously continues to rape our fragile planet, I believe it is our duty-- and perhaps part of my "mission" in life to teach people the difference between "more" and "enough."
Our life is pretty simple. We live in a house with a view of the ocean, where we plan to spend the rest of our lives. We currently have three cats, a bird, three fish and nine chickens. We have a labyrinth, and we love to garden and walk on the beach. There's a dog in our future, but we just haven't met him/her yet.
Sarah is a Spiritual Intuitive Life Coach who specializes in working with HSPs. Of course, I am biased, but I have seen her help and guide 100's of "our kind" and I recommend her unreservedly. You can read more about her on her website. We are both part of the White Light Express, a cooperative of healers and teachers, many of whom are also HSPs.
Last, but not least... I love nature, and am only half-joking when I tell people that "nature is my church." Like most humans, I am a jumbled mass of contradictions. I hug trees, but bring along a laptop with a satellite uplink to the web. I love cities, and I love the country. I eat red meat, but have never met the Sasquatch. My relatives are weird. They'll read this, and send me nastygrams and eyerolls. I love autumn leaves, the smell of sagebrush in the desert after a rain, the ocean, mountains, fog, the beach, gentle rain and strong coffee. I collect sea glass on the beach, because it reminds me of our impermanence-- it started as sand, humans made it into glittering glass, and eventually the motion of the waves will turn it back into sand. I don't like "group think." In fact, I generally reject it. Great minds don't think ALIKE, they think FOR THEMSELVES.
I really like cats. They seem to like me. We have a symbiotic relationship that involves ear scratching, hairballs, litter boxes, photography and relaxation.
Thank you for visiting my web site! I hope you found something useful, interesting, thought provoking, insightful, annoying, funny, enlightening, joyful, entertaining or otherwise worthwhile during your visit here.
Comments? Questions? Complaints? Compliments?