Featured Articles

  • Jenna Forrest on having a sensitive childhood

    Jenna Forrest on having a sensitive childhood

    A number of people claim to have had an idyllic or happy early life, the sort evoked by this photo: “The Walk to Paradise Garden” [1946] by W. Eugene Smith. But for many of us who have been highly sensitive all our lives, or had especially challenging experiences as children, that image does not feel […]

  • 27 Tips For Navigating College As a Highly Sensitive Person

    27 Tips For Navigating College As a Highly Sensitive Person

    By Andrea Runyan While college can be an exciting and fruitful experience, it can also be a challenging time for Highly Sensitive People (HSPs). As the first time when many students are living away from home, college presents many potential challenges for the HSP, such as eating dining hall food; living in a dormitory; having […]

  • Highly sensitive relationships - Gwen Stefani: "I'm really emotional"

    Highly sensitive relationships – Gwen Stefani: “I’m really emotional”

    Like a number of other dynamic and creative musicians and actors, Gwen Stefani affirms she has qualities of the personality trait of high sensitivity: “I’m really emotional. I don’t fight with people – like, I can barely fight with my husband because I’ll just start crying instead. I’ve learnt not to do that.” [imdb.com] A […]

  • Our high sensitivity personality: normalcy, wholeness, acceptance

    Our high sensitivity personality: normalcy, wholeness, acceptance

    In her authoritative book The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You, Elaine Aron, PhD notes, we are at “the extreme end of the dimension of sensitivity.” But she adds, “For many HSPs the real challenge is to achieve the middle ground. No more ‘too shy’ or ‘too sensitive’ or too […]

  • High Sensitivity and Addiction

    High Sensitivity and Addiction

    Writer Pearl Buck famously commented, “The truly creative mind in any field is no more than this: A human creature born abnormally, inhumanly sensitive.” I don’t agree that being highly sensitive makes us “inhuman” in any sense, but the trait can bring with it emotional challenges. A number of highly sensitive and creative people have […]

  • Are we cry-babies?

    Are we cry-babies?

    ‘Highly sensitive people can be considered “weak” “soft” “pathetic” and “cry babies”.’ That comes from the following article, and reminded me of when I was a kid in Boy Scouts. At one of our meetings, some of the other boys got the idea to have some fun by pantsing someone. I was the chosen victim, […]


Depressive thinking can accompany being a high sensitivity personality

Depressive thinking can accompany being a high sensitivity personality

Intuitive HSPs may go to dark places In her article Growing Up Gifted Is Not Easy, Elaine Aron, PhD [left] talks about this dark aspect of sensitivity. “Early in my research on sensitivity — while I was studying its relationship to introversion and the four Jungian functions of sensing, thinking, feeling, and intuition — I […]

Marti Olsen Laney on Introversion Advantages

Marti Olsen Laney on Introversion Advantages

Marti Olsen Laney, Psy.D., M.F.T., is an author, researcher, speaker, educator, psychotherapist and an authority on introversion. On her site: MartiLaney.com she lists : Top 10 Advantages Introverts Possess: 10) Work Well With Others, Especially In One-to-One Relationships 9) Maintain Long-Term Friendships 8) Flexible 7) Independent 6) Strong Ability To Concentrate 5) Self-Reflective 4) Responsible […]

Jenna Forrest on empowering sensitivity and relieving anxiety

Jenna Forrest on empowering sensitivity and relieving anxiety

Jenna Forrest is a coach who offers “energy healing, intuitive coaching and spiritual apprenticeships to help sensitives experience inner peace, higher consciousness, and life transformation” and writes in her memoir Help Is On Its Way about growing up with the trait of high sensitivity. In our podcast interview, she talks about empowering and transcending sensitivity. […]

The shy personality and two kinds of social phobia

The shy personality and two kinds of social phobia

By Bertil Hjert — “There are two different types of social phobia. The first is generalized, where anything and everything in the way of social interaction has the potential to send your nerves into overdrive. “People who are only afraid of a few or a particular type of social interaction have non-generalized or specific social […]

Jenna Avery audio interview on thriving as an HSP

Jenna Avery audio interview on thriving as an HSP

Jenna Avery is a coach who “uses her intuition, deep empathy, and innate practicality to help her visionary, creative clients step fully into their creative ideas, dreams, and ability.” In her programs and mentoring, she helps individuals recognize and more fully express their talents as highly sensitive people. In our interview, she talks about some […]

Talented and shy - Jane Fonda, Evan Rachel Wood, Nicole Kidman

Talented and shy – Jane Fonda, Evan Rachel Wood, Nicole Kidman

Jane Fonda: “Acting was the last thing in the world I wanted to do, I was so shy. “But I got fired as a secretary and had to earn some money.” She discovered her passion for acting in the mid-1950s while studying with famed drama coach Lee Strasberg, who told her she was special and […]

Neuroscience and sensitivity - our superior colliculus and amygdala

Neuroscience and sensitivity – our superior colliculus and amygdala

A news item by ScienceDaily reported on research that may explain more about the neuroscience that underlies high sensitivity. “Researchers have discovered that a primitive region of the brain responsible for sensorimotor control also has an important role in regulating emotional responses to threatening situations. “This region appears to work in concert with another structure […]

Creativity in solitude - Ani DiFranco and others

Creativity in solitude – Ani DiFranco and others

Musician Ani DiFranco produced her album, “Educated Guess,” entirely on her own. An interviewer asked, “Your approach, your energy on the current tour and on the new album seem different. Why is that?” DiFranco: “The difference is solitude. I have it in my life now…” In a new Psychology Today article, the author writes about […]

Programs for Introverts and Highly Sensitive People

Programs for Introverts and Highly Sensitive People

Programs to “encourage, inspire, and equip other introverted and Highly Sensitive People.” (To quote Andy Mort of Sheep Dressed Like Wolves, below). See bottom of page for links to other resource pages for books, articles and more sites. This painting is “Mindfulness” by Erika Pochybova-Johnson – a depiction, it seems to me, of the rich […]

Self-Study Classes for Sensitive Souls

Self-Study Classes for Sensitive Souls

Coach Jenna Avery describes her programs: “These self-study classes are the product of my many efforts to find ways to be a happy, healthy, highly sensitive soul. “I have investigated everything I could get my hands on about energy skills, energetic boundary strengthening, interpersonal boundaries, flower essences for sensitive souls, empathy, intuitive development and more. […]

Your Sensitivity Can Make You a Strong Personal Coach

Your Sensitivity Can Make You a Strong Personal Coach

“I think introvert or sensitive or shy people make the best coaches.” Barbara Sher In this video, she adds: “Sensitive people have to have a lot of courage, its very hard on them, but the benefits are so great! They know so much to teach all of us.” Video: Barbara Sher in an interview with […]

Our High Sensitivity Personality

Our High Sensitivity Personality

About 15 to 20 percent of us have this trait of high sensitivity which nurtures our inner awareness and creativity, but also can bring some unique challenges. Many actors, musicians, authors and other artists identify themselves as being shy, or consider themselves introverted or highly sensitive – these are not the same as each other, […]

Sensitive to others but staying safe

Sensitive to others but staying safe

Elaine Aron, PhD notes high sensitivity means “you are aware of subtleties in your surroundings” and also that you are “more easily overwhelmed when you have been out in a highly stimulating environment for too long.” In addition to other sources of sensation and input, a highly stimulating environment may be one or more other […]

Denmarkguy on Being Highly Sensitive

Denmarkguy on Being Highly Sensitive

Peter Messerschmidt (also known as ‘Denmarkguy’) notes he is “a writer by calling, but make my actual LIVING from a system of ‘patchwork economics’ that includes writing, consulting, coaching, eBay entrepreneurship, being a a rare stamp dealer, a beach comber and overall Creative Slacker…I am an HSP, INFJ and enneagram type 9, and have spent […]

Oxytocin and Social Phobia - relief of social anxiety

Oxytocin and Social Phobia – relief of social anxiety

Excerpts from article Oxytocin and Social Phobia : Some people may confuse the trait of high sensitivity with shyness or social anxiety. Social phobia or social anxiety disorder is characterized by extreme and persistent anxiety associated with social or performance situations. Scientists believe that the amygdala is responsible for the symptoms of social phobia as […]

Learning to live with social anxiety

Learning to live with social anxiety

Many actors and other performers identify themselves as being shy earlier in life, or even as adults. According to a news story, “Shyness was an ongoing problem for Chris Cooper… While studying at the University of Missouri, he vowed to get ‘unblocked.’ “Taking dance classes at nearby Stephens College, he was one of only three […]

Elaine Aron

Videos: Elaine Aron on the trait of high sensitivity

Video: Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D., summarizes the trait of high sensitivity: ~ ~ See listing of videos, including documentary “A Talk on High Sensitivity” by Shari Dyer, on Elaine Aron’s site hsperson.com ~ ~ .. You can also purchase another DVD: Elaine Aron: A Seminar on Learning How to Thrive as a Highly Sensitive Person. A Guide to […]

Judith Orloff M.D. on "energy vampires"

Judith Orloff M.D. on “energy vampires”

The image is Winona Ryder and Gary Oldman in the movie Dracula (1992). The book Meeting the Shadow declares, “Bram Stoker’s ‘Count Dracula’ [is] but a recent instance of this genre. Tales of vampires and werewolves have probably always been with us.” Aside from the dramatic mythology, psychiatrist and energy specialist Judith Orloff M.D. says […]

Elizabeth Wagele: Are Introverts More Creative than Extraverts?

Elizabeth Wagele: Are Introverts More Creative than Extraverts?

Note – See Facebook post on this article, with a number of comments about Wagele’s perspectives. ~ ~ In her Psychology Today blog post Are Introverts More Creative than Extraverts?, writer, cartoonist and musician Elizabeth Wagele writes about how this key personality dimension relates to creative expression. Here is an excerpt : Are liking solitude […]

Highly Sensitive People and Depression

Highly Sensitive People and Depression

Psychologist Susan Meindl writes: Highly sensitive people…have nervous systems and minds which permit more stimulation to enter without automatically and unconsciously shutting it out, and further, that they then cognitively process the stimulation that they receive in more detail than others do. Stimulation comes in on all sensory channels: sights, sounds, smells, vibrations, touch. HSP’s […]

Being Sensitive and Creative

Being Sensitive and Creative

Clinical and research reports confirm creative people are unusually sensitive, and many creative people have commented about their own experience with the trait of high sensitivity. For example, creativity coach Lisa Riley, LMFT comments she has “encountered a connection between highly sensitive people and their own creative impulses. “Creatives often feel and perceive more intensely, dramatically, […]

Video: The Highly Sensitive Person by Therese J. Borchard

Video: The Highly Sensitive Person by Therese J. Borchard

“Do you get overwhelmed easily? You could be one of the lucky highly sensitive persons living in an overwhelming world.” Therese J. Borchard is the author of the blog “Beyond Blue” on Beliefnet.com, which is featured regularly on The Huffington Post and was voted by PsychCentral.com as one of the top 10 depression blogs. Also […]

Are Highly Sensitive Men More Creative?

Are Highly Sensitive Men More Creative?

“So, I listened to this guy, and he’s got a hypnotic effect. He plays acoustic guitar, of course; and he is a real poet; and he’s a very sensitive guy.” Record producer John Hammond, about Leonard Cohen [BBC Interview.] Psychologist Elaine Aron and other researchers find that approximately 20 percent of the population has the […]

Highly Sensitive People (HSP) "Meetups" in Los Angeles

Highly Sensitive People (HSP) “Meetups” in Los Angeles

Monthly HSP Meetups Presenter: Jim Hallowes of HighlySensitivePeople.com : “I’m honored to have been invited by Dr. Pat Allen to hold a monthly talk and workshop to discuss the trait of high sensitivity and Highly Sensitive People — what Dr. Pat Allen often calls her “Alphas.” “And, even if you’re not an HSP, I guarantee […]

Ted Zeff on strategies for nurturing our sensitive self

Ted Zeff on strategies for nurturing our sensitive self

“At least 50 million Americans have a finely tuned nervous system.” Ted Zeff, PhD ~ ~ Coping Strategies that Dr. Ted Zeff teaches for the Highly Sensitive Person: Create a Daily Routine 1. Your morning routine will set the tone for your day while your evening routine will influence the quality of your sleep. 2. […]

Better At Noticing Subtle Details

Better At Noticing Subtle Details

Photorealist painting is one form of creative expression that demands a high degree of technical prowess and attention to detail. The image is Tom’s Diner, 1993, a watercolor by Ralph Goings – from the book Photorealism at the Millennium, by Louis K. Meisel, Linda Chase. A CNN article on sensory processing sensitivity – more commonly […]

Actors and High Sensitivity

Actors and High Sensitivity

“Most actors are highly sensitive people.”  Nicole Kidman Creative people tend to be both extroverted and introverted, usually more one way than the other. Many actors and performers identify themselves as “shy” and may have the personality trait of high sensitivity. Psychologist Elaine Aron, PhD notes highly sensitive people (HSPs) are often called “shy” – but, […]

Marie Forleo and Ane Axford About Being A Highly Sensitive Entrepreneur

Marie Forleo and Ane Axford About Being A Highly Sensitive Entrepreneur

Ane Axford, MS, LMFT (she pronounces it like “Annie”) notes: “I am a highly sensitive person, who is also high sensation seeking, introverted, a licensed mental health and relationship therapist who specializes in working with highly sensitive persons.” In her interview podcast “On HSPs as Entrepreneurs with Marie Forleo,” Ane and Marie talk about being, […]