Tag: "giftedness"

The inspiration of Einstein

The inspiration of Einstein

*+-Only a rare person can illuminate and advance an entire domain of knowledge, as Albert Einstein did with physics, but he also embodied a number of traits and experiences that can inspire even us mere mortals to live more exceptional and creative lives. On a recent Tavis Smiley Show [transcript], Walter Isaacson spoke of the […]

Allan Snyder on savant syndrome and creativity

Allan Snyder on savant syndrome and creativity

*+-Darold Treffert, MD explains, “Savant Syndrome is a rare, but spectacular, condition in which persons with various developmental disabilities, including Autistic Disorder, have astonishing islands of ability or brilliance that stand in stark, markedly incongruous contrast to the over-all handicap.” From his article The Savant Syndrome: Islands of Genius. Daniel Tammet , as one example, […]

Is uncommon intelligence or intensity a gift?

Is uncommon intelligence or intensity a gift?

*+-Willem Kuipers is author of the book Enjoying the Gift of Being Uncommon: Extra Intelligent, Intense, and Effective. In a section of the book – Is it a Gift to be Uncommon? – he writes about how people who are Xi [eXtra Intelligent or Intense] may view their exceptional abilities. Here is an excerpt: Giftedness […]

Rooney Mara on the Extra Intelligent and Intense Lisbeth Salander

Rooney Mara on the Extra Intelligent and Intense Lisbeth Salander

*+-Lisbeth Salander is one of the most intriguing and powerful characters in literature, and both Rooney Mara in the new movie of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, and Noomi Rapace in the 2009 Danish version, bring to life a richly complex and dynamic young woman. The “extra intelligent and intense” of my title is […]

Does Perfectionism Help You Be More Creative?

Does Perfectionism Help You Be More Creative?

*+-Perfectionism can be experienced as an intense drive toward excellence – or as a pathological obsession that impedes spontaneous imagination and creative play. In her post Blogging My Way Through Perfectionism, Lisa Rivero comments about Mary-Elaine Jacobsen, author of The Gifted Adult: “Jacobsen differentiates between pathologically perfectionistic obsessions or compulsions, on the one hand, and […]

Mothers with a rage to achieve

Mothers with a rage to achieve

*+-Therapist Belinda Seiger, PhD says she has “known many gifted women who seem to possess what I refer to as the ‘rage to achieve.’ “They are constantly driven to learn, to create and to be intellectually productive even while raising young children.” Author Amy Bloom (photo; she is Writer-in-Residence, Wesleyan University) has commented on the […]

Developing multiple talents is an adventure

Developing multiple talents is an adventure

*+-There are many examples of creative people who are multitalented and able to engage in a wide range of creative expressions. But many face challenges that can get in the way. Tina Fey is a writer, comedian, screenwriter, actor, a previous host of the Golden Globes telecast, and producer. Tina Fey “attended Upper Darby High […]

Gifted relationships: On Being "Too Much" to the Right of the Curve

Gifted relationships: On Being “Too Much” to the Right of the Curve

*+-Posted by Cat Robson For most of my life, finding friends and work that honored my intensity and intelligence wasn’t an issue for me. I thought I was just weird and damaged and that my loneliness was deserved. “Calm down,” “You take things too seriously,” “You’re so intense.” Most people seem calm and unphased by […]

The gifted adult: a lot going on inside

The gifted adult: a lot going on inside

*+-Growing up, many people with exceptional ability and multiple talents experience themselves as too different to fit in with ‘normal’ groups. As adults, some do become the high achievers that Malcolm Gladwell writes about in his book Outliers: The Story of Success [see the post Outliers and developing exceptional abilities.] But there are many internal […]

Gifted students and competition: coping with fraud feelings and stress

Gifted students and competition: coping with fraud feelings and stress

*+-By Cat Robson When I was a child, and even through graduate school, I thought people were going to find out I was a fraud. I thought other talented people were doing better, achieving more and having more fun doing it, and I still tend to compare myself unfavorably with others on a daily basis. In her […]

Gifted adults are different from an early age

Gifted adults are different from an early age

*+-One of the personal qualities that seems to be shared by most gifted children is being different and divergent – in terms of thinking, interests, values and behavior. Many gifted adults feel “wrong” or anxious about “not fitting in” even though being different can be a strength – a positive attribute. In the movie “Nancy […]

Michael Jackson and Dabrowski Excitabilities

Michael Jackson and Dabrowski Excitabilities

*+-Psychomotor Overexcitability is a “surplus of energy, pressure for action, restlessness, impulsive actions, competitiveness, sleeplessness.” Stephanie Tolan notes the original Polish word can be translated more literally as “superstimulatabilities” and “involves not just psychological factors but central nervous system sensitivity.” Michael Jackson exemplified a number of these qualities as a singer and dancer. See video and more […]

Nicole Kidman: high ability and complexity

Nicole Kidman: high ability and complexity

*+-“You live with a lot of complicated emotions as an actor, and they whirl around you and create havoc at times… I’m willing to fly close to the flame.” Nicole Kidman “Creatively gifted children and adults are emotionally intense and have rich inner lives…It is natural for the gifted to feel deeply and to experience […]

The gifted adult personality - too much for others?

The gifted adult personality – too much for others?

*+-In her article Giftedness in the workplace (on her Talent Psychology site), Dr. Mary E. Jacobsen writes about some of the social challenges of being exceptional and intense, including high ability adults not understanding their own minds and unique characteristics. “No matter how brilliant they may be, gifted adults who have received inaccurate or scant […]

What is being gifted? What gets in the way?

What is being gifted? What gets in the way?

*+-“By high school, I’d more or less given up on the tedious process of making friends, since libraries were always nearby, and books were much better companions anyway.” Novelist Laurie R. King (link to her site – she is author of The Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes series, and other books.) Photo from Facebook/Laurie R. King. Being […]

Nerds. Is it OK to have a beautiful mind?

Nerds. Is it OK to have a beautiful mind?

*+-A review by The Week magazine of the book “Nerds” notes the term was used by Dr. Seuss in one of his books in 1950. “Its actual definition has had shifting boundaries, says book author child psychologist David Anderegg. “Today it connotes ’some combination of school success, interest in precision, un-self-consciousness, closeness to adults, and […]

Gifted, Talented, Misunderstood: 10 Misconceptions About Gifted Adults

Gifted, Talented, Misunderstood: 10 Misconceptions About Gifted Adults

*+-In her article “10 Misconceptions About Gifted Adults”, Jane Macondo sheds some light on why gifted people can be baffled…and baffling. She writes: Gifted adults are largely invisible. One of the reasons very few apply the term to themselves is due to the misconceptions about giftedness – in adulthood as well as childhood. Many adults […]

What do you do with your intensity?

What do you do with your intensity?

*+-Many talented actors, musicians and other performers have the venue and “permission” to use their high physical and emotional intensity. But many of us who are not performers can find it challenging at times to manage our intensities or excitabilities, especially when working with other people. It is easy to point to examples of high […]

Not like the others?

Not like the others?

*+-One of these things is not like the others, One of these things just doesn’t belong, Can you tell which thing is not like the others By the time I finish my song? From Sesame Street song One Of These Things (is Not Like The Others) “Not only did my identity seem tangible, it also […]

Unrecognized Giftedness and Identity

Unrecognized Giftedness and Identity

*+-By Cat Robson Embracing our identity as gifted and talented is not easy for many of us to do. Why is this so tough? What beliefs about giftedness get in our way? What leads to unrecognized giftedness for so many people? In his article “How to Charm Gifted Adults into Admitting Giftedness: Their Own and Somebody […]

To identify and serve the unknowing gifted

To identify and serve the unknowing gifted

*+-By Sara Harrier Over the decades, education and resources for gifted youth have made significant contributions to the education and mental health fields.  Many thinkers have shed light on not just the intellectual differences of the gifted, but on the unique personality traits and social-emotional needs of this population. And it’s been hugely liberating and […]

Gods and prodigies, freaks and geeks: building identity

Gods and prodigies, freaks and geeks: building identity

*+-Wunderkind, genius, prodigy. Freak, geek, nerd. How we label exceptional people and ourselves affects our identity and what we think about the reality and value of our talents, and the possibilities of expressing them in the world. One of the most positive experiences for me in high school was my friendship with an artist (painter, […]

Creating is a way to channel our emotional intensity

Creating is a way to channel our emotional intensity

*+-“Creating art has always been a way to channel emotional intensity.” Psychologist Cheryl Arutt “Our impulse to be creative can be one of the most dynamic methods of meeting and redeeming one’s devils and demons.” Psychologist Stephen A. Diamond Acting is one form of creative expression that artists can use to channel their intensity and […]

Perfectionism and Brene Brown on The Gifts of Imperfection

Perfectionism and Brene Brown on The Gifts of Imperfection

*+-Perfectionism can be an unhealthy way to try to satisfy distorted ego needs or defuse shame or low self-esteem, for example – but it is a simple name for what can be a complex set of drives and attitudes that can also fuel our pursuit of excellence and motivate social change. Hilary Swank: “The great […]

Leonardo DiCaprio: a "crazy kid"- and maybe overexcitabilities

Leonardo DiCaprio: a “crazy kid”- and maybe overexcitabilities

*+-Leonardo DiCaprio was amazing in What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? (1993), portraying a teenager with mental health challenges. Not knowing his work before, I thought, How was this autistic kid able to work as an actor? One of the ways he created such a powerful and – many people say – authentic, performance was using his […]

Amber Tamblyn on her gifted character on TV series “House”

Amber Tamblyn on her gifted character on TV series “House”

*+-Amber Tamblyn comments about her character Martha: “I think you’re going to see someone who has been so much in the world of academia and knowledge that she really never progressed or matured in a social sense.” In the TV series “House,” Amber Tamblyn portrays Martha M. Masters – a “genius third-year med student who, […]

Alia Sabur on not letting anything stop you

Alia Sabur on not letting anything stop you

*+-Alia Sabur, at age of 18, was recognized as the youngest college professor in history, breaking a 300-year-old record. She was hired as a professor in the Department of Advanced Technology Fusion at Konkuk University, in Korea. As profiled in a Today Show bio, “She made the jump to college at age 10. And by […]

Giftedness, sensitivity and psychiatric drugs: why do we take them and why do we quit?

Giftedness, sensitivity and psychiatric drugs: why do we take them and why do we quit?

*+-By Cat Robson What are some of the considerations that lead sensitive and gifted adults to take psychiatric medications? What are some of the reasons people stop taking medications? What are the alternatives? My inner life, and sometimes my outer life, is painful/chaotic/confusing. The DSM symptoms list for certain mental illnesses seem to fit me […]

Didn't you used to be gifted?

Didn’t you used to be gifted?

*+-“The natural trajectory of giftedness in childhood is not a six-figure salary, perfect happiness, and a guaranteed place in Who’s Who.” Linda Silverman – in her book Counseling the Gifted and Talented. In her keynote address The Universal Experience of Being Out-of-Sync, Linda Silverman, Ph.D. argues that giftedness should not be defined as simply high […]

Our developed minds can be dismissive

Our developed minds can be dismissive

*+-The image is food critic Anton Ego from the movie Ratatouille [video clip]. I was reminded of the stuffy and dour character while reading Laura Berman Fortgang’s The Little Book on Meaning, and her reference below to “high analytical ability.. often black-and-white thinkers.. Quick to decide what is good and what is bad..” I know […]

You're intense, complex, and driven because you're gifted

You’re intense, complex, and driven because you’re gifted

*+-Author Mary-Elaine Jacobsen writes about the experience of being exceptional: “To feel like an outsider, to constantly pressure yourself to hold back your gifts in order to fit in or avoid disapproval, to erroneously believe that you are overly sensitive, compulsively perfectionistic, and blindly driven, to live without knowing the basic truths about the core […]

Being Smarter Than Others

Being Smarter Than Others

*+-One of the many inspiring quotes by Steve Jobs is this: “Everything around you that you call life was made up by people that were no smarter than you, and you can change it, you can influence it, you can build your own things that other people can use.” But Jobs also recognized he was […]

Some saw me as a person with rare insight, others thought I was crazy.

Some saw me as a person with rare insight, others thought I was crazy.

*+-Those kinds of mixed reactions [in the title] are not so unusual for exceptional, gifted and talented children and adults. “I got that whole precocious thing [as a child]. I had no reason to doubt my own abilities or not share my opinion. The adults were offended, and the kids were resentful. I was persona […]