What is the norm, and what does it mean for us as gifted adults?
The norm is just that…the norm. You know, normal. It doesn’t take into account those who lie at the boundaries of life, who do things differently or think in a way that isn’t much like anyone else. The problem comes when those who are not part of the norm try to melt themselves into it.
Leslie Sword shares her perspective on some of the turmoil that gifted adults face during the discovery of who they really are and what they are all about:
“…gifted adults are rarely aware of their giftedness. Some misinterpret their complex and deep way of thinking as ‘craziness’. Some mistake their emotional intensity for emotional immaturity or see it as a character flaw. Because they have never been given information to explain what is “normal for gifted” they frequently experience frustration in the world, alienation, anger, self-blame and emptiness.
They feel the pain of being different and not feeling valued by others, or indeed by themselves. Without an adequate explanation of their gifted difference, they develop a façade with which they cover their authentic gifted self; a face that they show to the world in order to fit in and so avoid disapproval or sanction.”
And that face behind which is so easy to hide brings with it feelings of being an impostor, a fraud, a deceiver in some way, adding another handful of negative emotions to the gifted adult’s pot.
What do we do? How do we get around these feelings?
What are your thoughts, and what have been your experiences on this? Please share.