Featured Articles

  • Jean Houston on perceptual capacity and psychic ability

    Jean Houston on perceptual capacity and psychic ability

    In our interview, Jean Houston commented about the Theory of Emotional Development of Kazimierz Dabrowski (which talks about levels of excitability or functioning), and about psychic ability in relation to giftedness. Houston agrees that ‘psychic’ has been used in our culture as a pejorative term: “Don’t I know it,” she says with a laugh. “I […]

  • Psychotherapy and High Sensitivity

    Psychotherapy and High Sensitivity

    As highly sensitive people know, there are advantages to our trait, such as a deeper response to others and the world, and increased creativity – but there can also be emotional and mental health challenges. Therapist Susan Meindl discusses this in her article here, which is followed by related comments by Elaine Aron, and resources. […]

  • Energy Sensitivity

    Energy Sensitivity

    Energy psychiatrist Judith Orloff, MD explains: “An intuitive empath is someone who not only senses energy but also absorbs it from others and the environment. Their body takes on the angst of the world. It can be very draining. “I’ve been an intuitive empath since childhood which prompted my exploration of this phenomena. I couldn’t […]

  • Jenna Avery on Recharging Your Energy as a Highly Sensitive Person

    Jenna Avery on Recharging Your Energy as a Highly Sensitive Person

    Jenna Avery writes: As a sensitive soul, good energy-management skills are a must. This means tuning in to yourself on a regular basis and continually reassessing and adjusting what you take on. It’s a real balancing act. And sometimes, despite your best intentions, your energy gets drained and you feel out of balance. The key, […]

  • 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 […]

  • 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 […]


Highly Sensitive People: audio interview with Jim Hallowes

Highly Sensitive People: audio interview with Jim Hallowes

Jim Hallowes is founder of the Highly Sensitive People website, and has been studying and presenting information on HSPs for many years. He has a wide range of perspectives on the trait and how it relates to gifted and creative people. See The Creative Mind Interviews to hear the interview. ~~ Related articles Highly Sensitive […]

Let Go of Taking Responsibility for Others

Let Go of Taking Responsibility for Others

Creativity coach Jenna Avery notes “Sensitives are often unknowingly affected by the energy, emotions, and desires of others. “This can be both confusing and overstimulating because we are unable to distinguish whether we’re operating from our own center or someone else’s. “I believe that it’s critically important for sensitive souls to learn how to protect […]

Sensitive to Anxiety and Depression

Sensitive to Anxiety and Depression

Being highly sensitive probably increases our vulnerability to anxiety and depression, which for many of us go together to some extent. Elaine Aron, PhD thinks “high sensitivity increases the impact of all emotionally tinged events, making childhood trauma particularly scarring.” [From the post Elaine Aron on High Sensitivity and the Undervalued Self – about her […]

Ranking and Self-Esteem

Ranking and Self-Esteem

In addition to helping fuel creativity and a richer experience of life, being highly sensitive can make us more vulnerable to emotional overwhelm, anxiety, self-criticism and other issues. Healthy self concept and self esteem can be especially challenging for a number of people, perhaps especially those of us who are highly sensitive to our inner […]

Jenna Avery on dealing with overwhelm

Jenna Avery on dealing with overwhelm

In an article of hers, creativity coach Jenna Avery affirms, “As a sensitive soul, it’s easy to get overstimulated. With stimulation all around, it’s not surprising. “Our urgency-addicted culture and mainstream work ethic is overstimulating. “Sound bites, billboards, spam, and constant advertisements surround us. “Other people’s energy and emotions affect us. Too much light, noise, […]

Shyness and High Sensitivity - On Stage or Off

Shyness and High Sensitivity – On Stage or Off

Many seemingly self-assured performers and actors have been shy or introverted as children. Some still are, as adults. And many have found that performing has changed their level of confidence. Having the personality trait of high sensitivity – as many creative people do – can interact with shyness and introversion. ~ ~ Amy Adams says, […]

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 […]

Sensitive and Stressed - Waking up into Anxiety

Sensitive and Stressed – Waking up into Anxiety

In her article Understanding Early Morning Anxiety, Deanne Repich [left] talks about the common experience of “sleeping peacefully in your warm, cozy bed. You are at peace, finally getting a break from the cares and tasks of the day. “Then, BOOM! Suddenly, the shrill sound of your alarm clock jerks you awake. It triggers the […]

Jessica Chastain and High Sensitivity

Jessica Chastain and High Sensitivity

“I’m very sensitive in real life. I cannot not cry if someone around me is crying…even if it’s not appropriate. I have that thing in me, a weakness or sensitivity.” Jessica Chastain Such a powerful, dynamic and emotionally expressive actor, in films including “The Tree of Life”; “The Debt”; “Lawless,” and “The Help,” (for which […]

Highly Sensitive and Living With Social Anxiety

Highly Sensitive and Living With Social Anxiety

Shyness, social anxiety, social phobia – one of the problems in using these labels about ourselves is they are often too unspecific and relative: shy compared with whom? How anxious, for how long, in what situations? Many people avoid crowds or social contacts that are too anxiety producing. But if this kind of social anxiety […]

Judith Orloff on Sensitive People and Relationships That Work

Judith Orloff on Sensitive People and Relationships That Work

Intuitive Psychiatrist Judith Orloff writes: Loneliness gets to some more than others. But why it hangs on isn’t always apparent when read by traditional medical eyes. In my practice and workshops I’ve been struck by how many sensitive, empathic people who I call “emotional empaths” come to me, lonely, wanting a romantic partner, yet remaining […]

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, […]

Understanding Empathy

Understanding Empathy

By Jenna Avery. As a sensitive soul, you are likely to have a high degree of empathy. Empathy is the ability to feel another person’s emotions as if they are your own. In many ways, being empathic is a gift, because it allows you to fully experience, understand, and support others. In other ways, it […]

Is the culture becoming more accepting of sensitive people and intuition?

Is the culture becoming more accepting of sensitive people and intuition?

Our critical internal dialogue corrodes positive self-regard and confidence. That inner critic is fueled by the culture and other people, and how we respond. Jenna Avery, a coach for “Highly Sensitive Souls,” says in her audio interview that one of the issues for highly sensitive people is constantly questioning “Why can’t I fit in? Why […]

Jacquelyn Strickland on empowering yourself as an HSP

Jacquelyn Strickland on empowering yourself as an HSP

Hear this audio interview with Jacquelyn Strickland – a Licensed Professional Counselor, Coach and workshop leader. She says, “The idea of acting versus reacting is so important for highly sensitive people, because we do take in so much from our environment. I like to use the idea of mindfulness… “Be aware of ways in which […]

Sensitive / Too Sensitive - Being Sensitive and Stressed

Sensitive / Too Sensitive – Being Sensitive and Stressed

The image is from the book The Sensitive Self by Michael Eigen – who says in his article Sensitivity, “Without sensitivity what would life be like? Sensitivity nurtures us, gives life color, expressiveness, charm… Sensitivity, feeling and thinking feed each other, are part of each other. Thinking and feeling are ways sensitivity unfolds or grows.” […]

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. […]

Sensory processing sensitivity: smelling books and reading vinyl record grooves

Sensory processing sensitivity: smelling books and reading vinyl record grooves

Savant sensitivity The term ‘savant’ may be most often used for people such as Daniel Tammet, who is autistic and can recite more than 22,000 digits of pi from memory. [See my post Savant abilities and learning differences relate to developing multiple talents] In his book Islands of Genius: The Bountiful Mind of the Autistic, […]

Singer Joss Stone on being a 'little empath'

Singer Joss Stone on being a ‘little empath’

Joss Stone has created multiple top-selling albums and earned awards including a Grammy. In a magazine interview article, she talked about being highly sensitive. “I think I’m just very, very emotional. My mom used to call me her little empath. I just feel other people’s love and other people’s pain very, very easily. “Which can […]

Getting beyond our fears and anxiety

Getting beyond our fears and anxiety

News story about Cinders the pig: “You can’t get much happier than a pig in muck, or so we are told. But when this little piggy arrived in the farmyard she showed a marked reluctance to get her trotters dirty. “While her six brothers and sisters messed around in the mire, she stayed on the […]

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 […]

Are you Crazy or Are you a Highly Sensitive Person?

Are you Crazy or Are you a Highly Sensitive Person?

From the BioElectric Shield site: A large number of people who come to us are suffering as highly sensitive people. … This sensitivity can dramatically impact your ability to cope with the ever increasing chaos and energy in the world today. I get on the phone many days and the person on the other end […]

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 […]

Lost in our reactions - the high sensitivity personality

Lost in our reactions – the high sensitivity personality

“If the dimension of presence or awareness is missing, then you are lost in the reaction. Then you become the reaction, and you don’t know who you are.” Eckhart Tolle High sensitivity can make our life much richer, but it can also be a distressing and disorienting experience. Probably starting when we were too young […]

Claire Danes on being shy and high achieving

Claire Danes on being shy and high achieving

“You were very sensitive as a child; family and school problems, childhood illnesses, and the like all affected you more than others. Furthermore, you were different from other kids and almost surely suffered for that.” Elaine Aron, PhD. “I did not perform well socially in junior high. I was a strange girl and I was […]

Elaine Aron

Elaine Aron on the trait of high sensitivity

“I know ALL HSPs are creative, by definition. Many have squashed their creativity because of their low self-esteem; many more had it squashed for them, before they could ever know about. But we all have it…” – Elaine Aron Video: Elaine N. Aron, Ph.D., summarizes the trait of high sensitivity: ~ ~ See more videos, […]

Relationships for highly sensitive people

Relationships for highly sensitive people

Interactions with others and just being in social situations can be challenging for those of us who are highly sensitive. Although sensitivity is not the same thing, it often goes along with introversion or even shyness. [See my post: Shyness, Introversion, Sensitivity – What’s the Difference?] Actor Scarlett Johansson has commented: “I think I was […]

Bryce Dallas Howard and Judith Orloff on psychic ability

Bryce Dallas Howard and Judith Orloff on psychic ability

“It goes beyond the senses, as we know it. It’s our ability to intuit the mystery.” Judith Orloff, MD In the movie “Hereafter,” the character George Lonegan (Matt Damon) seems to be able to communicate with people beyond the grave. Reviewer Roger Ebert noted the movie “believes most psychics are frauds” but “supposes one who […]

Genes and the startle response and high sensitivity

Genes and the startle response and high sensitivity

One aspect of a highly sensitive nervous system can be a strong startle response or startle reflex, which can be related to a vulnerability to anxiety. Among the items in the Self-Test for sensitivity by Dr. Elaine Aron is “I startle easily.” In an edition of her Comfort Zone newsletter titled The Benefits of Being […]

Jenna Avery on Work for Sensitive Souls

Jenna Avery on Work for Sensitive Souls

Jenna Avery writes: Have people always called you “too sensitive?” Do you try to hide it, pretend it doesn’t exist, or work around it as much as possible? Many Highly Sensitive Souls believe that our sensitivity makes us weak, weird, or different. Actually, being sensitive makes us highly aware, caring, and perceptive. In the workplace, […]