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Counseling Highly Sensitive People

Dr. Ginicola also specializes in working with those with Sensory Processing Sensitivity (SPS), also called Highly Sensitive People. Person balancing on logsSPS is a temperamental trait where individuals have both increased sensitivity within the Central Nervous System and deep processing at cognitive, emotional, and social levels. 

Highly Sensitive People can:

  • be overwhelmed by strong sensory input - such as lights, smells, course fabrics, or sounds,
  • need time alone to decompress and recharge,
  • be bothered by violent movies and/or troubling news stories,
  • get very rattled with time pressures or being requested to do too much at once,
  • have a rich and complex inner life, always thinking and feeling,
  • have others tell them are shy or "too sensitive"

If you think you may be an HSP, you can take the validated self-test assessment here.

As an HSP, you may experience anxiety and depression, feeling like you do not fit in this insensitive world. You may also feel a sense of exhaustion, overwhelm, and confusion or a sense of being "stuck". It may be impacting you at work and within your relationships.

My approach to working with sensitivity is to assist clients with understanding their sensitivity and learning to cope within the insensitive world. I also assist clients in understanding their sensitivity from a strength-based perspective. I see all highly sensitive people as "superheroes" who have likely not had their gifts valued and honored. As we work to change the way they see their sensitivity and learn to honor their trait, I have found that clients find a sense of relief, purpose, and renewed motivation. 

I perform research in the area of counseling highly sensitive clients. I identify as emotionally sensitive (empath), but am not an HSP. However, my husband and son are both HSPs and I understand the trait well from both a professional and personal level.


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