The gifted adult…

I spent some time in the bookstore yesterday – some much needed time out from the house.

I started reading the Gifted Adult: A revolutionary Guide to Liberating the Everyday Genius by Mary-Elaine Jacobsen. Giftedness has been on my mind a lot lately (well, a lot has been on my mind, and this is one of many topics). I know my dd is gifted, and she’s only in Kindergarten. Learning is becoming effortless for her. She is advancing at a pretty quick rate. She just started reading recently, but she is already reading more complex things than she reading just 5 months ago. I don’t think she’s exceptionally gifted, not by a long shot, but she definitely has lots of potential.

I know dh is gifted, and so am I. Not profoundly gifted, maybe not even moderately gifted, maybe only mildly gifted (as we haven’t been given formal IQ tests). But academic giftedness is only one side of the coin, and the only one measured by current test procedures. Even Marilyn vos Savant, known in the Guinness Book of World records for having the Highest IQ recorded (228), is aware that typical IQ tests don’t really reflect a person’s complete gifted profile, nor does it even reflect accurately a person’s potential.

I found some interesting things about giftedness in Jacobsen’s book.

  • Most gifted people don’t know they are gifted.
  • Being gifted doesn’t mean your life is automatically better.
  • It has nothing to do with personality.
  • You can be gifted and yet still have been an underachiever.
  • Just because you are gifted doesn’t mean you know exactly what you want and how to get there.
  • Just because you are gifted, doesn’t mean you will achieve great things early on.

And on a lighter note, I’m going to add my own:

  • Being gifted doesn’t always mean you catch your mistakes when blogging.


Other things I’ve picked up out of it is that if you’ve ever felt out of place, different, misunderstood, oversensitive, emotional, keenly observant, perceptive, and feel a sense of urgency, drive, or intensity to do something meaningful with your life, you are probably gifted.

Also, if you haven’t realized your potential it’s because you haven’t been able to accept and access your gifts – in essence, you’ve manage to blend in by adapting to the standards of others, rather than by living by the beat of your own drum.

There are many unrecognized and underdeveloped Gifteds out there. Maybe instead of getting the recognition for that Giftedness, you were medicated instead, to “normalize” your behaviors and thought patterns. It’s a very definite possibility.

And even if you have a disability, it doesn’t remove the possibility that you can be gifted too. It’s called being twice exceptional, or 2E in some discussion groups.

I will probably write more on this subject as well. But if you think you may be one of the 20 million adults who are gifted and you may not even know it. Pick up this book or scan the internet for the subject of giftedness. And don’t be discouraged about IQ. That is not the definitive measure of giftedness.

And if you can’t pick your path, don’t give up hope. There is some great advice in the book, I Could Do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was: How to Discover What You Really Want and How to Get It, by Barbara Sher.

It’s even great for when you want to do everything, but can’t get to it all at once.

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5 Responses to The gifted adult…

  1. Hi

    Just wanted to say I found your blog today and will be reading (nice template too ;-)). Having just quickly glanced over some of your headings, and the subjects of some of your postings, I think you’re one of the tribe.

  2. growinginpeace says:

    I’m going out on a limb and saying that by “one of the tribe” to mean one of the gifted ones? If so, I’d like to think I might be, at least on the cusp of being gifted. It would explain a lot. My husband recently used the specific words “driven, and “intense”, as well as “extremely focused”. I go through periods of urgency too. Something compelling me forward. I literally have had a lot of inner conflict lately over being home for the sake of my children and returning to work, but have decided to stop worrying about my stalled career and work on my children. I see my children exhibiting signs of giftedness too and I been doing a lot of searching for answers for them as well as for me. My lovely sensitive child is also a reason I’ve had to dig deeper, and she’s making me really learn all there is to learn about unlocking her secrets and making her to be the best she can be. She’s making me a better parent than if she was complacent about everything.

    Thanks so much for posting. I’m so glad to have some feedback on how this is going. This website is giving me a project to work on, and I’ve been needing a place to record my thoughts. I’m also hoping someone may take a bit of what I’ve learned and can apply some of it for themselves.

    I appreciate the feedback. Oh, and I really loved this template too. I came across another blog of it a bit ago, and didn’t know this was an option here. It is really serene to me.

  3. growinginpeace says:

    Oh, I will definitely be reading more of your blog too. Thanks again for posting. I haven’t been on wordpress long enough to make my way around here much.

  4. Catana says:

    Specialists in giftedness are beginning to make a distinction between academically gifted and intellectually gifted. Marilyn vos Savant would be considered academically gifted, by my standards. The intellectually gifted are a fairly small fraction of the gifted population, and they are the ones who suffer most from not being identified properly. I’ve been writing on this subject for close to two years now. If you’re interested in more specific and useful info, minus the emphasis on emotional and self-esteem issues that Jacobsen concentrates on, I invite you to visit.

  5. growinginpeace says:

    I definitely do want to learn more about the distinction. Thank you so much for the link. Thank you for commenting. I hope others who may possibly feel this post resonates with them, and they wonder about possibly being gifted, that they seek to learn more about giftedness too.

    As for me, I’d like to think I was gifted, though I’m pretty sure not in the academic sense, because I know I’d do poorly on an IQ test now. Though for some reason, I have this strong memory of seeing some paperwork when I was a child that said I had an IQ of 120 which by today’s standards isn’t gifted, but “above average”. At any rate, I still feel that’s pretty accurate description, whether I have the right number or not. I’d always been in advanced classes, got accepted to the U of Chicago (but for other reasons declined going there).

    Still, I have number envy. Silly isn’t it? I still wish I could say I have an IQ of at least 130. Not that it would change anything, but for some reason I could be self satisfied in knowing it concretely. And I wish I could get into Mensa. But then again, if I knew I had such an IQ, and I was a member of Mensa, I might be even more conflicted about quitting my career to stay at home for a season to nurture my children.

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