Job hunting is an activity that should favor the highly sensitive person. Counterintuitive? Not at all, and here’s why: HSPs are, in theory, deep thinking and good at big picture tasks. In that sense, HSPs should have a better grasp on where they’ve been and where they wish to go career wise. HSPs should also have the upper hand in writing pieces like resumes, cover letters, and curriculum vitaes. Again, why you ask? Because HSPs are, typically, more detail oriented and deeply conscientious people. HSPs are also intrinsically creative and should be more open to different ways of describing themselves and their experiences.

The article makes some good points about the nature of the resume and cover letter as marketing tools. People too often think of the resume as a simple list of positions held and responsibilities, but overlook the utility and worth of the resume as a way of tailoring one’s experience, education, and interests to a position. Similarly for the cover letter, people too often think of it as a form letter and manage to grab no attention in the opening paragraph. I suggest that we reframe how we view these documents and think of them as sales tool to sell YOU!

That last point will make most HSPs, who do not enjoy being the center of attention, cringe and wince, but the truth is you need to acquire the marketing skills to market yourself in the competitive job market of the 21st century. Too often, HSPs are dealing with leftover faulty perceptions from childhood: low self-esteem, lack of self-confidence, underdeveloped potential, or underachievement. All contribute to holding back potential and depriving you of some of the great positions that exist now and in the future. None of this will matter if you do not do the inner work on yourself to allow yourself to simply BE without overthinking it or attaching a label to it.

I suggest that instead of thinking of the challenges of being an HSP, you begin to think of the strengths and the potentialities, several of which I have mentioned. Begin to use your detail-oriented mind to relate your experiences, education, and interests to jobs you want; begin to reach out (yes, reach out) to other people and network like you mean it; and always carefully craft your job hunt in a way that is tenacious, bold, and crafty. As the article says, ” fortune favors the bold” and HSPs, at least using the mediums of email and letters, have no reason to not take bold steps to get the job they want. Anything else you can cultivate as well.

With all this in mind, I want to talk to you for a minute about working environments. We know from research, specifically a theory called Vantage Sensitivity, that people who are high in sensitivity tend to do better than those without the trait if they are in a supportive and positive environment. Similarly, in a negative environment we tend to not do as well. The moral here is HSPs MUST have positive working environments and positive environments in general. Let’s qualify that, though, so we do not fall prey to a misconception: your working environment does NOT need be 100% positive or supportive, just more supportive than it is not. Obviously, the more supportive, the better, but do your best to find the best supportive environment you are able, at the present moment.

What about when a working environment becomes negative or unsupportive? Vantage Sensitivity tells us, and the theory has been tested with thousands of participants across dozens of studies now, that high sensitive people will not do well in an unsupportive environment. This does not mean that you leave your job because of one bad day, indeed, expect that your job will likely only be positive in an overall sense, acknowledging you will need to take the good with the bad. If your job begins to feel like it’s tipping more toward the negative you will have to weigh, knowing what you now know about Vantage Sensitivity, if you wish to remain in an environment that drains you more than it fills you.

Lastly, I encourage you to invest in yourself! There may be few people who believe in you because you may be quiet, maybe didn’t finish college, or some other circumstance, but the world is not going to beat a path to your door. It is up to you to invest in yourself and acquire the skills and education you need to take advantage of opportunities, some very good, in the job market. This may mean a degree, or it may mean shorter-term training, it may even mean unpaid volunteer experience to get your foot in the door (something I have done) until you have the clout to demand more. Invest in yourself, be your own parent, be your own best friend, be your own biggest cheerleader or coach.

There is no inherent limit in what you may achieve as an HSP or a human being. You may have things you need to work on while you are trying to do something else and that’s fine, we all do, even at higher levels. Realize, though, that you can accept a limited life or you can take the ambiguous and uncertain road of developing your innate abilities and capacities and find ways to apply those in the world. It’s about cultivating what is, at its heart, an entrepreneurial and creative orientation that seeds opportunities, cultivates them, and grows multiple ways of doing and being in the world. Maybe you will love working for a great company, or maybe you need to work for yourself, I don’t know. What you will need to do is think of yourself as worthwhile, your potential as only limited by your perceptions and courage, and life as a one-shot opportunity to express something of your essence as a full-spectrum human being.

Thrive: The Highly Sensitive Person and Career (now in audio book form as well as print and e-book)

Thrive: The High Sensation Seeking Highly Sensitive Person (now in audio book form as well as print and e-book)


Remote Work Increasing

“By 2025, some 70 percent of the workforce will work remotely at least five days a month.” I noted a similar statistic in Thrive: The Highly Sensitive Person and Career in 2015 and remote work is quickly becoming the norm. This is great news for many highly sensitive people!

Before you get too excited, understand that working remotely implies that you have particular skills and abilities, typically combined with some degree of education. Not all remote work jobs are high-skilled but some of those, such as telemarketing, may be worse for HSPs than working in a physical office space. Other remote work may be skilled work that can be performed from anywhere, making physical location a mute point.

If you want to be able to take advantage of remote work, and I encourage you to do so if you have ever suffered in a physical working environment that is poorly designed or a social environment that is overstimulating, you WILL need skills. The more skills you have, the better off you will be in gaining employment and being able to grow into your potential over time. It might be tempting to think of remote work as an escape but it can quickly become your prison just as well, since, now you will be at home a lot more!

For some people, that would be perfect, for others, it might be maddening in a few months as they need at least a certain amount of social stimulation from their co-workers or managers. Professional interactions are an important component of career growth and ignoring this need will put you on the fast track to stagnation. Many people who work remotely are doing so as a blend between home and office, thereby mitigating some of the isolation. In my view, a roughly 50-50 blend would be a workable schedule for most people, depending on the nature of your specific career.

By the way, I work remotely as well as the program chairman, and professor, for a master’s degree that is entirely online. Higher education is also shifting rapidly to the online format as universities and colleges seek to cut costs and overhead. Speaking as a remote worker, I can say that isolation can be a problem, even if one is diligent about daily self-care and getting out in public. My ideal schedule would be two days at home and three days in the office with perhaps every other week flipping that balance. Luckily, I have more than one professional life ongoing, which helps with balancing it all.

How are you preparing for remote work?


Thrive: The Highly Sensitive Person and Career (now in audio book format as well as Ebook and print).

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HS Men’s Weekend

You’ve waited for it, you’ve emailed me about it, and now, here it is: the link to register for the very first Highly Sensitive men’s weekend workshop at 1440 Multiversity! The workshop will be held March 13-15th near Santa Cruz, California and is sure to be a standout event for 2020 as HS men come together in warm-hearted community for the first time to learn about their shared trait, discover the nuances and complexities of life as a HS man, and experience the kind and compassionate energy of other HS men.

This event is sure to be transformative and inspiring!

Please share!


Misophonia – Part 1

Here’s a sample of what my new page at Patreon is all about: how about a four part discussion of Misophonia? It’s a seemingly common issue we HSPs face in daily life as we experience certain types of trigger sounds or visual stimuli causing us to feel intense anger, irritation, anxiety, or a need to escape. This is a BIG issue for HSPs…

Part 1 at

DrTracyCooper Patreon page now LIVE

Join me on Patreon as we create a learning community just for highly sensitive people. Together, we can co-create a learning community with real value for all HSPs by exploring a number of important topics. Among those will be the often misunderstood, yet poignant Misophonia, a frustrating and irrational sensitivity to certain noises that a number of HSPs seem to experience; more on HSPs and careers; much more on Positive Disintegration; and much, much more on the sensitive sensation seeker.

I cannot do it alone, though, because creating meaningful work takes time. Subscribing to Patreon frees me up to spend more time working on the issues and topics you care about the most. Want to learn more about a particular area of Sensory Processing Sensitivity? Simply subscribe to my Patreon page and contribute your suggestions, I will listen.

The content on my Patreon page will be more in-depth than I able to offer here on FB. Additionally, I will record videos discussing each topic, since so many of us learn better by seeing and hearing. There will be a monthly video conference for those at the moderate to higher tiers of membership and one-on-one sessions for those at the higher tiers. That’s a great way to get your questions answered or insights provided on your career dilemma or how to contextualize life as a sensitive sensation seeker.

This new learning community moves us beyond the anonymous and isolated world of book publishing to one that is interactive, responsive, and easy to understand, wile remaining rigorous, rooted in the research, and flexible enough to adapt to changing times. Technology will surely change over time and, along with that, how we are able to interact, share information, and form learning communities that can provide vital educational experiences and support.

I invite you to join me on Patreon…

Join me on Patreon!

IMG_20190925_130512438This page started several years ago as a means of reaching the HSP community in a more direct way than through books or other premade media; not surprising given that I am an HSP as well with a deep need for connection and meaning.  The mission of this page has always been to help people by raising awareness and consciousness around Sensory Processing Sensitivity and, in doing so, help people to thrive and live their most decisive and full lives.  In that regard, there have been some compromises made to fit the format and expected length of posts.  It’s always been a juggling act between providing too much content and risking turning people off or providing too little to be of any real use.  I’ve opted to keep posts fairly brief, while introducing and elaborating on a topic enough to stimulate meaningful thinking in support of my page mission, but I have always felt that I want to go more in-depth on many topics.

The time has come now to take advantage of new platforms and new models.  With a new model, I will be able to provide more in-depth content that will be of even greater utility in helping people come to know themselves better, develop strategies for living in the world as, both, a highly sensitive person and a sensitive sensation seeker, and to provide insights on topics that touch the lives of people beyond superficial description of the trait.  Here, for one, I am envisioning moving to higher level discussions of spirituality and how we can direct our creativity toward greater self-actualization, over time.

This new platform is called Patreon and is based on the rather old idea of patrons providing support to enable the creator to invest his time into the things we all care about.  I especially like the patron idea in that it is crowdfunded and, thus, spread out over many people.  This enables the effort to be a true grassroots initiative, rather than one for the elites.  People already support causes they believe in across an incredible variety of topics, from the very serious to the not so serious.

This new page at Patreon will be called, very simply, Dr. Tracy Cooper and will continue the same mission as this blog: to help people by raising awareness and consciousness around Sensory Processing Sensitivity and, in doing so, help people to thrive and live their most decisive and full lives.  The difference will be that content will go into greater depth and breadth, videos will be posted about twice a week, and there will be direct access to a question and answer session each month with me at the higher tier levels.  There are various incentives at each level of subscription, but all are simply meant to be gestures of thanks for ongoing support.

The new Patreon adventure will launch this coming Tuesday, Oct. 1st.  This blog will continue to exist in its current format, with brief articles and some helpful analysis but, if you would like more in-depth content I invite you to consider helping me create a new HSP learning community that is open, warm, and inviting, as well as informative, practical, and educational.

I’ve never been much of a “joiner,” instead preferring to work on my own and enjoy maximum autonomy to pursue what is of most interest to me and that which I feel will be of most use to my audience.  Ironically, I ask you to now “join” me in creating a beautiful new HSP community at Patreon that will be co-created with your support and advice on topics you would like to hear about the most.  When I entertained the idea of a Patreon page, I felt a little resistance at the idea of “performing” for an audience and the way I’ve been able to embrace it is thinking of it as creating a new learning community; community building has always appealed to me and this new venture may lead us down some interesting possibilities.

I’m willing and ready to see where it takes us, are you?  Join me

Upcoming Sensitivity Summit

I’m thrilled to share this FREE online event, beginning Sept. 16th,  where I, and 25+ other phenomenal experts, senssummittshare new understanding and insight about the trait (including the gifts and challenges) of high sensitivity.

Thrive: The Highly Sensitive Person and Career

Thrill: The High Sensation Seeking Highly Sensitive Person