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The Highly Sensitive Detective: Why Highly Sensitive People Make Great Detectives

Updated on March 10, 2017

The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.

— Sherlock Holmes - The Hound of the Baskervilles

The Highly Sensitive Person: Nature's Detective

If you're reading this then you are probably aware that 15-20%; according to research, of people are highly sensitive. The other 80% are either moderately or only slightly sensitive in comparison.

This is a good number. This is a number that makes sense. After all, can you imagine a world in which at least 50% of the human race was highly sensitive?

In such a world, the human race would take at least twice as long to reach the level of advancement we are currently at, wouldn't you agree? There would also be less violence, less crime, and fewer wars--but that's a discussion for another day.

My point is that if nature were to purposely select a portion of a population to act as detectives, with heightened senses and the ability to process information on a larger scale, albeit more slowly, logic dictates that a smaller percentage, such as 15-20%, would suffice.

Thousands of years ago, when man was little more than a smart animal, and when danger abounded all around, 20% of a small group of say 20 humans, would have been 4. Now, highly sensitive people are not born to hunt or fight. Overwhelm would quickly set in, and a calculating, hungry animal would make short work of a highly sensitive warrior. However, in a population of 20, 4 would be sensitive, i.e., nature's detectives, those that would sense danger, and the rest would be made up of warriors/hunters, mothers and children.

In a typical scenario, the highly sensitive individuals would sense danger or prey nearby and inform the rest, at which point the warriors would spring into action to defend the group or hunt down the prey.

So you see. If you are highly sensitive, then you are nature's detective--you are nature's Sherlock Holmes.


Eliminate all other factors, and the one which remains must be the truth.

— Sherlock Holmes - The Sign of Four

Every highly sensitive person is a potential Sherlock Holmes

What made Sherlock Holmes such an excellent detective was his uncanny ability to notice things that others consistently missed. It doesn't end there. Even if he were to point out clues that other detectives had missed, it was still up to him to piece those clues together to create a bigger picture, which involved a suspect, a motive and the series of events leading up to the crime.

Sherlock Holmes was one in a million, you could say. Put another way, he was one of the 15-20% of people that are highly sensitive, and was lucky enough to be working in an occupation that suited his gifts perfectly!

If you are highly sensitive, you too are equipped with the gifts necessary to become a detective or a private eye. I'm not saying that you should pursue such a career, I'm saying that in every highly sensitive person, there is a detective and if you choose to, you can use your heightened senses to improve your life and the lives of others.

The Gifts of Nature's Detective and When to Use Them

Highly Sensitive Gifts
Detection Situation
Clues and Signs
Keen Eye Sight
Misplaced item
Changes in environment
Keen Eye Sight
Someone lying
Facial expressions, gestures
Keen Hearing
Emotion in someone
Inflection or intonation
Deep Thought
Seeking motive
Pieces of information
Expansive Imagination
Analyzing a recent scenario
Moods, expressions, details

It is an old maxim of mine that when you have excluded the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

— Sherlock Holmes - The Beryl Coronet

Training and Focus

Okay, so I know that the table I provided contained relatively few situations, however, I think I made my point, which is that as a highly sensitive person little escapes your attention.

However, before I leave you, I want you to know that while your senses are keen, you do need to train yourself to consciously work alongside those senses. Your conscious mind doesn't always work seamlessly hand in hand with your senses. It can often get in the way and be influenced by biases, experiences, and prejudices, so if you are to become a truly great detective of nature, you need to train your mind to objectively and subjectively (you need emotions too to imagine motive and behaviors) analyze information.

Sure, you can still be a good detective/observer, without training yourself to see things from every angle, but wouldn't it be awesome; not to mention useful, to be as focused and accurate as the great Sherlock Holmes?

Natural Detective Poll

Do you use your highly attuned senses and thinking ability to solve crimes and mysteries?

See results

Are you a skilled highly sensitive detective?

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    • Richawriter profile imageAUTHOR

      Richard J ONeill 

      2 years ago from Bangkok, Thailand

      Hey Jodah,

      Yes, Sherlock Holmes is an intriguing character, isn't he?

      Glad to meet another highly sensitive person.

      Thanks for stopping by.

      I'll pop over and see you in your neck of the woods soon.


    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 

      2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      This was really interesting and fun. I love Sherlock Holmes and am highly sensitive.


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