Tips for Being a Highly Sensitive Person in Today’s World

Cover art Tips for Highly Sensitive People in Today's World

Duration: 17:14

Listen to Tips for Highly Sensitive People in Today’s World

Episode Transcript

Hello, my name is Roxanne Darling and this is In the Transition podcast.
On today’s episode, I’m sharing how I get off my case while being a highly sensitive person who cares about the world ! I’m constantly tweaking how to use my influence, while not getting overwhelmed by taking on too much responsibility for things that are out of my control.

I seriously think there are easier ways to effect change than by having me do so much heavy lifting. If you too are concerned with your role in the state of the world, I hope this episode offers a little uplifting tonic. Plus, I’ll be talking about one of my favorite podcasts, Ear Hustle!

On today’s episode, I’m sharing how I get off my case while being a highly sensitive person who cares about the world ! I’m constantly tweaking how to use my influence, while not getting overwhelmed by taking on too much responsibility for things that are out of my control.

I seriously think there are easier ways to effect change than by having me do so much heavy lifting. If you too are concerned with your role in the state of the world, I hope this episode offers a little uplifting tonic. Plus, I’ll be talking about one of my favorite podcasts, Ear Hustle!

If this is your first time listening, please visit my website, in the Transition dot com, to learn more. You can also find me on instagram and twitter @roxannedarling.

So basically I’m going to take another stab at popping the binary balloon of “how things work.” It’s really not about right or wrong, even though we focus a lot on that way of thinking. Some recent news from the Ear Hustle inspired me to want to talk about this stuff. Co-host and San Quentin inmate, Earlonne Woods, had his sentence commuted by California governor Jerry Brown a few days ago. I believe that there is a positive connection to all the work he did and the thousands of listeners who engaged with him via the podcast. That connection is in the energy realm, not the signing petitions or going on hunger strikes realms.

Here’s my ‘note to self’ for this episode:
Rox, Stop feeling guilty if you don’t work on every cause. Can you imagine, and be exhilarated by the idea, that just by listening to a podcast and falling in love with one of the hosts, developing incredible respect for his life, his circumstance, his vulnerability, etc that YOU added to the spiritual fire that burned through the prison walls to have his sentence commuted? That as one of thousands who listened, you raised his profile and his vibe, which helped change his entire situation?

Yes. This is the complicated way I believe the universe works. We are here playing with limits and boundaries, with the distant memories of unlimitedness that we bring with us from the other side when we incarnate as humans.

Each of us is a full-fledged member of the sacred – divine – omniscient universe. But our superpowers are intentionally quite limited here. By design. By choice. By intention. Even though we also choose to forget most of that once we are born and immersed into this crazy ass incredible world!

There are unlimited moral imperatives being placed in your path. Just yesterday, two women proselytizing for Jehovah’s Witness church had set up a 6’ tall trade-show-type banner on the side of my rural walking path and were passing out pamphlets.

I’m immune to that sort of preaching, but I am not immune to the calls to save the whales and stop polluting our planet with plastic. You may have your own opinions as to which of those, if any, are “real” for you. And if so, what sort of action you want to take.

My best understanding is that things are happening based on very complex math that is an aggregate of the 7 billion soul intentions here. Most days it looks like like there are nearly equal opposing sides on any major issue. (As for the minor ones, there seems to be lots more variation. There are WAY more people who are aghast at nudity, for example, than those who are fine with it. LOL, I’m in the minority here in case you were wondering.)

There are some interesting parallels for how sports works and how life works, when viewed from a wider POV. Things can feel as urgent and dire as your team being in the 4th down with 10 to go.

Some may think games are not serious or important but the energy in play is very similar to the global contests pitting different versions of right and wrong against each other. There are some nuggets of consciousness in there, that may affect your mindset / feelings.

So we have all these so-called world problems. I have strong opinions about many of them. So how do I decide which ones to engage with? What if my intention was not insignificant and I didn’t have to wear my physical body and my intellect and my tender heart down to the bone trying to solve these problems without being a “sellout” at “apathetic?”

For me, the ways of the world of both incredibly complex on any single issue yet the trends are remarkably straightforward. Humanity — a collection of souls who chose to incarnate for a while — creates massive games and conflicts and problems that take us to the edge of destruction, over and over again, sometimes for decades at a time. And yet, the desire to be here wins every time. Crises are solved. Wars are ended. Boundaries are redrawn — literally and figuratively. (The Democrats used to defend slavery and now they are all in against racism.)

Which brings me back to the issue of who solves what problems and how? Another example is from when I was in outrigger canoe club. There were volunteer tasks that were required each week in order to participate in the weekend regattas, the races. And though there were about 30-40 women on a team, it was almost always the same 7-10 or so who would show up to prep the canoes. Even though it was “everyone’s” responsibility.

Here’s the secret I figured out. Instead of acting by guilt motivation, it appeared those of us (and for sure, ME) who showed up were there more because we wanted to be. In my case, I was a newbie and wanted to learn as much about rigging and prepping the canoes as I could. And knowing the circumstances of some of my who were not there, made this a no-brainer. They had kids; I did not. They had other responsibilities that were in conflict; I did not. And some of them had no interest in learning about the canoe specifics; they mostly wanted to just train and race. And some did indeed feel guilty for not being there.

My point is that all kinds of things are getting done each day. The ones who are really drawn to a cause, are the ones who are best to be there. Their desire is front and center; they want to pay attention; and they are committed to a certain outcome.

Contrast this with dragging your partner someplace using guilt as the prod. Not as much fun. Partner is probably bringing their so-called A Game. They’re dragging their feet, mumbling under their breath, thinking about how to reverse prod you the next time the tables are turned.

So back to Earlonne and Ear Hustle. He was a man in prison with a sentence of 31 years to life for attempted robbery. (I know – makes no sense whatsoever, until you remember three strikes sentencing.) I wanted him out of prison. I had no access, no authority, no way to accomplish that, in theory. I could have chosen to feel bad about it, to feel guilty for not doing more. So I let go of being responsible for Earlonne, while instead listening to him, leaving comments on their Instagram and Twitter, and being part of this energy field that I believe has contributed to his freedom.

Why am I saying all this?

  • One, because I am a recovering guilt-ravaged codependent who literally thought that once I was aware of a problem I had to do something to fix it.
  • Two, because like most recovering -aholics, I want to share my path out of the pain in case others can benefit.
  • Three, because I feel lucky to see the world in this strange way and I like to talk about it. In case, you too want to shed some guilt, shed some faux “you’re responsible for everything” mindset.
  • Four, I believe it’s not possible to have a life without pain.
  • Five, that pain invariably has a silver lining if I am open to seeing it, if I am willing to wait long enough, if I bring my self-acceptance to the table, if I stay in the present, if I stop thinking that i have all the answers. Because I don’t.

So these days I use a different metric for guiding my actions than the one I was raised with. The question is not longer “should I do this or that” but “do I want to do this or that.” I am using want-don’t want as my filter rather than should-shouldn’t.

And I trust that these big problems I see and you may see, will attract those who WANT to engage with them and bring their A Game, and that we’ve got enough humans to tackle each one without me feeling responsible for all of them. It has taken me years to find courage in sharing this belief, especially when there are so many quotes by smart and well-meaning people, along the lines of “doing nothing or not speaking up is as bad as being a perpetrator. That is guilt and fear based message that I reject.

Mind you, each of us has every right to use our influence on others. And each of us a every right to listen to our own selves in determining how to live this life. Somewhere, in the big picture, all these individual actions are having effects. I’m choosing to believe that life unfolds in still mysterious ways and the most powerful contribution I can make is to know myself and act from true desire rather than guilt. None of us can ever truly know what caused this or that to happen.

What we can do, IMO, is learn to trust THE ENERGY more and more. To listen to what excites us and go there. To trust that our fellow humans have their own stories, pain, interests, etc and to stop judging everyone and everything for not doing what you or I want them to do. To be ever so blunt, the bigger a crisis, the more attention it naturally gets. And somewhere in the back room of global consciousness, we souls who are having a human experience have enormous collective energy to keep solving things, even. And especially at the so-called last minute, meanwhile battling each other in the same exact way that football teams do – and whose battles we call entertainment.

Just now, I saw this on Twitter: from Mary Alice Higgins:

After a very brief committee and final stage – the #FossilFuels Divestment Bill has passed the Seanad to make Ireland the first country in the world to divest from fossil fuels! Well done to all who worked so hard to see its swift passage.

HOW COOL IS THAT? A result that I am so happy about. I didn’t overtly do anything to make it happen, but I did use my intention and my occasional sharing on Twitter to have my energy in the mix.

Thank you so much for listening today. It is one more installment in my “get off your case” life philosophy podcast here in the transition in consciousness. It’s a simple belief that we can perform more clearly and make more powerful contributions when we choose want/don’t want over should/shouldn’t. Scary at first, perhaps, to be guided internally rather than externally, but so far humanity has survived and there are more of us here than ever.

Thank you so much for listening.

If you’d like to share your comments with me, I have several options for you! You can leave an audio message at my Google voice mail,
(505) 510-1135.
You can email me at
You can also tweet me @roxannedarling.

That’s all for today’s episode. Thank you for listening and hanging out here with me, In the Transition! If you liked this, please tell a friend and/or leave a review in Apple’s iTunes.

Please note: I like to include about a minute of music at the end of episode to allow listeners to stay “in the zone” of the podcast, giving you additional time to rest and integrate.

Thank you for being You.


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Photo Credit: Purple Portal, abstract photograph from Maui, by me, Roxanne Darling

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About Roxanne

I use a specialized form of coaching to help people be more of who they are and less of who they're not. I lived in Hawaii for 17 years and now reside in Santa Fe, NM. I work with clients around the world. I invite you to join my "Get Blissed" email list for updates.