Whole Living as an HSP by Corina Rosca

Whole Living as a Highly Sensitive Person

On my forearm arm rests a recently hand-poked tattoo.

A mishmash of circles that could appear disjointed when in fact they are based on a very specific and universal formula: the Fibonacci sequence. The Fibonacci sequence is one of the most famous formulas in mathematics. Each number in the sequence is the sum of the two numbers that precede it.

From the shape of eggs to sunflowers to sea shells, this pattern swirls out into staggeringly whole and beautiful infinity. The hand-poked tattoo I am permanently wearing is my reminder to live as wholly as I can every moment.

So what does that mean in day-to-day terms? It means that big or small, in every 24-hour cycle I aim to visit the areas of my life that lend themselves to living a whole life.

Personally, it is of the utmost importance that I address these areas of my life:

  • Thoughts
  • Productivity
  • Physicality
  • Ingestion
  • Relationships
  • Energy Accounting
  • Container Building, and
  • Abundance Harvesting

Thoughts are as random and as organised as the stars in the milky way. Each deserve their place. Each thought deserves to have its power acknowledged. Deserves to be sorted by the higher power that is my will and my spirit. Tending to my thoughts is how I learn about myself, how I design myself and how I manifest myself into being.

There are clusters of thoughts that seemingly have no rhyme or reason, I welcome them too. I accept these disorganised clusters as a manifestation of a universal intelligence that is way beyond my own.

Some thoughts I cherish and use as a navigational tool, others are purely there by order of the cosmos. Which thought do I use as my north star? What direction am I headed and will this little light in the night sky lead me in the desired direction?

Productivity is the manifestation of our human-ness. We are matter in a 3D physical world. We are made to evolve, synthesise, create. A significant but sustainable part of my day has to be devoted to such ‘strain’. A certain number of hours that will leave me feeling tired yet ready for the next day.

Twelve years of 16-hour days on film sets created the perfect setting for me to experience several burnouts. Today, I feel quite proud that my productivity sweet spot lies somewhere around 6 hours a day, 6 days a week. Alternatively 8 hours a day 4 days a week is also a nice option depending on the projects I have undertaken.

The way I see it, it’s all about sustainable energy expenditure. My output must produce a result and simultaneously fill my tank rather than deplete me. Sounds counter-intuitive, but it’s actually quite feasible especially when we go into Flow States to generate output and productivity.

Physicality is about being conscious of all my internal mechanics. How tight does my fascia feel? How strong do my bones feel? How is my muscle tone improving? What does my skin tell me about my overall health? Do I provide the ecosystem of my body a landscape with peaks and valleys in breathing, heart rate, muscle creation, muscle stretching at least once every 24-hour period?

Ingestion of any and all means into the vehicle that is my body. What do I eat and drink and when? How long do I fast during each 24-hour period? How clean is the water I drink? How processed are the things I eat or drink? How clean are the products that I apply to my skin? Am I supplementing my diet with original sources of vitamins & minerals? Nori sheets for iodine. Apple seeds for cyanide. Psyllium husks as pro-biotics. Ocean salt water for maximum magnesium absorption.

Relationships and community: the complex and fascinating way our herd interacts, supports, attacks and evolves. Whom do I let into my ecosystem? Whose words and voices do I allow access into my world?  How many of them encourage and support me? Am I enthusiastically committed to encouraging and supporting them? How many of them am I eager to see… every single time? How many of them do I learn from? What is the ratio of nurturing versus depleting relationships in my life and why?

Energy accounting is the moment to moment tracking of what fills me or depletes me. Mantak Chia describes our bodies like batteries. A container to store energy for future use with consistent access to renewable resources. We are binary, we receive and we give. Like river water collecting from the mountains and pouring into the sea. A river must have enough water for it to flow freely and cleanly.

The cycle of giving and receiving is optimal when there are enough resources in the available in the first place. Who and what adds to my well-being? Have I noticed the level of the energy stores in my tank? Do I give enough? To whom and why? Are the people around me depleted or thriving?

Containers are beautiful things. Although sometimes divisive and selective, overall a container honours each thing for the simple merit of its thing. Container practice to me means being aware of my personal boundaries, the way I live and use my physical space (car, home, office), the way that I save money and resources, the amount that I tithe. These are all beautiful containers and beautiful teachers.

Have I been inconveniently honest today? Have I scanned my living areas to notice what needs decluttering? Have I deleted the unnecessary files in my devices? Do I have money saved; purely for the feeling of safety and thriving abundance? Have I kept the flow of cash and resources moving by sharing in ways that are useful, needed and also fulfilling?

Abundance harvesting is basically next level farming. In 2019, nearly everything in our lives is a seed. Everything bursting at the seams with potential. Every moment a portal into something epic. Some we recognise, most we take for granted.

What work/projects do we take on? Do we know how to navigate the phases, the seasons and the weather? Do we have the stamina to go all the way until the seed bears its own fruit? Will we know how to feed the soil without getting depleted ourselves?

After the harvest, do we know how to preserve its fruits? To alchemize the fruits of our labour into sweet timeless jams and preserves for the future? What am I planting and why? What does the garden of my life look like? Am I respectfully interacting with my environment for an optimal harvest?

In the age of meme’s and virtue signaling, some words and expressions get overused and become cliches worthy of contemptuous eye rolling.

Terms like body, mind and spirit can feel too vague and somewhat oversimplified.

The terms I have used are my personal anchors and although they may come across as over-complicated and convoluted, to me they feel textured and comprehensive.

So what does my day really look like? What is the landscape of my routine?

I wake naturally without an alarm around 6:15 am. Slow start to the day listening to my favourite live podcast, daydreaming across the balcony, oil pulling, lemon water, intermittent hot and cold shower.  Nothing more than Jojoba oil on my skin and mascara on my lashes and my face is ready for the day.

Simple wardrobe of basics in earthy monochrome colours where pretty much everything matches with everything else.  Feather earrings, because it reminds me to soar. Mobile office in my laptop bag so I can always have it with me. Both laptop and cell phone are over four years old and intentionally far from new because it’s friendly to the planet. German car for maximum safety and fuel efficiency.

Ten minute drive to my favourite coffee shop where they know just how to make my bullet proof coffee and where everybody knows each other’s name. I sit at the corner window overlooking Table Mountain; noticing how different the clouds look every day listening to GoGo Penguin jazz music while I work on all my passion projects.

Use the bullet journal technique in my moleskin notebook to generate a healthy sustainable cash flow from said passion projects. Say hello to another friend that unexpectedly popped in, have another coffee, make some calls, send some emails.

The afternoon includes clients, guests, meetings, driving across town all coupled with the deep desire to greet the sunset from the inside the ocean.

When possible, I drive the fifteen minutes to a blue flag beach, walk barefoot in the sand and jump into the freezing Atlantic waters for at least fifteen minutes. Swimming vigorously to increase circulation to major muscle groups and keep my inner core warm. Dunk my head in the cold water to tone the vagus nerve. Breathe in deeply and slowly to oxygenate my system. Notice the Twelve Apostles mountain range that hugs this part of the city. Notice the epic sound of waves crashing, not cars driving… and yet the beach is less than ten km from the heart of the city.

Once home, I enjoy yet another hot and cold shower rinsing off the salt residue from my skin and hair. Vegan stir fry dinner with whatever is happening in the fridge, a bottle of sparkling water coupled with a touch of Netflix. Checking in with friends, tending to my succulents, updating my bullet journal, reading books/articles brings me within moments of bedtime. By 9:30 pm I’m ready for bed.

Before I slip under my weighted blanket and pull my sleep mask over my eyes, I enjoy a 20 min yin yoga stretch session. Releasing the hamstring, the Psoas, opening the shoulder blades and chest is ideal for a great night’s sleep. Sometime I play binaural beats other times it’s sleep stories for adults via podcast. I enter REM quickly and sleep soundly.

Often I find myself supplementing with non-psychoactive CBD oil to help with high levels of anxiety. Lowered levels of anxiety enable deeper sleep, a lighter personality and much more energy the following day for productivity purposes. My days are great because I have designed them as such. Some of these privileges have come with costs, others flowed naturally. ALL intentional.

Some days are better than others, some days feel like a flat spin that I can’t recover from. Other times I feel like I live on a magic carpet ride. The circular Fibonacci on my forearm remind me of the laws of the universe, it’s divine pattern and my intentional inclusion of all parts of myself. Often in flux. Arguably the occasional a hot mess. Always growing and learning.

Walking through life with scars on my knees from the lessons in humility and a deep sense of faith because practicing being whole is all I need to focus on.

What are your daily metrics for a whole and complete life? What are the areas in your life that are to be tended to on a daily basis, without fail, without exception?


Pic credit via msandersmusic

Corina is a self-professed international mutt: Vampire DNA, Canada grown, African heart. Jack of all trades. Polyglot. Observant & introverted. Tries anything twice, except drinking the Cool-aid. In all circumstances, main goal is always to be useful.

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