NEGATIVE TRAIT THESAURUS

OVERSENSITIVE



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HELPFUL TIP:

Characters with this flaw will be extra sensitive to certain emotions, so think about how events in your story might specifically trigger these feelings to generate compelling tension and conflict. Another idea is to give a supporting character a positive attribute that is an opposite of this flaw, which will get under the skin of both characters and cause friction in their relationship.
DEFINITION:
Overly perceptive to emotion; easily hurt by external influences

SIMILAR FLAWS:
Hypersensitive, thin-skinned, touchy

POSSIBLE CAUSES:
High intelligence or giftedness
Low self-confidence and self-esteem
Fears and phobias
A chemical imbalance in the brain that causes an easily triggered fight-or-flight reflex
Growing up or living in an unsafe environment
Poor body image; believing oneself to be outside the norm (overweight, underweight, etc.)
A trauma in one’s childhood (being bullied or suffering other abuse)
Domineering, callous parents
Autism
Drug or alcohol abuse
An overly excitable nervous system
Paranoia
Perfectionism
A real or perceived lack of control
An obsessive need for the approval of others

ASSOCIATED BEHAVIORS AND ATTITUDES:
Crying or other emotional displays
Shutting down and becoming unresponsive
Leaving in haste and without reason
Reading into what another said or did in a way that was not intended
Growing silent during banter or conversation
Reacting explosively to teasing
Seeing criticism where there is none
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ASSOCIATED THOUGHTS:
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ASSOCIATED EMOTIONS:
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POSITIVE ASPECTS:
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NEGATIVE ASPECTS:
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EXAMPLES FROM LITERATURE:
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OVERCOMING THIS TRAIT AS A MAJOR FLAW:
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TRAITS IN SUPPORTING CHARACTERS THAT MAY CAUSE CONFLICT:
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