Mary-Elaine Jacobsen, Psy.D. is a Clinical Psychologist, speaker, trainer, coach, Director and Co-Founder of Talent Psychology Consulting Ltd., and author of book The Gifted Adult.
When the term gifted is used in casual conversation, it generally is assumed the discussion is about someone under the age of eighteen. Yet the attributes and concerns of the gifted do not disappear in adulthood, and at certain junctures in an adult's lifespan can become critical to an individual's well-being.
Inspiring though they may be, tales of eminence often imply that from an early age the truly gifted know exactly what they must do and undeviatingly pursue their lifework. Such distortions exacerbate gifted people's inner pressure to make their mark in the world. Furthermore.. the transition from full-time learner to full-time worker can be painfully disillusioning.
There are many confusing notions about what giftedness is and is not. Indeed, in several respects, the life experience of the gifted individual seems paradoxical (e.g., being considered highly successful while secretly feeling like an impostor).