Celebrating Talents and Abilities of Highly Gifted Children and Adults

In The Spotlight - Ordinary People Doing Extraordinary Things

Adrian Flores DanDan Tran Dennis Coelho Gary Raffanelli Lexi Lanni Joe Sharino Michael J. Vaughn Stefanie Tolan

Synthesis on Giftedness in Women

by Linda Kreger Silverman, Ph.D.

Director of the Institute for the Study of Advanced Development, and the Gifted Development Center, Denver, CO.

Unique perception and awareness

Global view - respect for all human beings

A greater capacity for empathy (concern for others, especially children; sensitivity and warmth)

Intense moral commitment (seeing injustice and doing something about it; willingness to stand up for one's beliefs)

Questioning, searching for truth

Intuitiveness; insightfulness

Creativity - the gifted woman as artist

Multipotentiality (having capabilities in many areas and domains of talent)

Ability to juggle many things at once

Similar to most women in concerns, but there is a qualitative difference in degree of commitment

Additional characteristics indicated by various writers and researchers.

Many gifted women:

Talk, read, count earlier than boys in early childhood; have slightly higher preschool IQ scores

Hide abilities to "fit in"; deny or disparage their capacities; are unaware of their own giftedness

Move fluidly from one pursuit or interest to the next; have impatience toward non-gifted people; are self-critical, labeling themselves as "scattered"

May often be seen as threatening to men - and other women - in positions of authority

Are exceptionally open to psychic & spiritual experiences

Have high excitability, high energy level, emotional reactivity, high arousal of central nervous system

May experience pain at being different from "the way women are supposed to be" and from the hostility and abuse from others

May experience deep conflicts between needs for self-actualization and maintaining traditional relationships

May hold divergent values compared to mainstream culture

Strive for moral integrity, social reform & service, inner authenticity

May poorly internalize their achievements; deny and disparage their successes; attribute success to outside factors; feel like an impostor

Have a lowered sense of entitlement to make mistakes; identify easily with failure; thinking they are more likely to blame than others

Are socialized toward meeting others' needs as top priority, denying their own needs and interests

Have relentless curiosity and heightened creative drive; are more process-oriented than product-oriented

Have extraordinarily high standards; have low tolerance for mediocrity and frustration

Are achievement-oriented; interested in non-traditional careers and professions

Have an acute awareness of complexities and consequences; heightened responsivity to expectations of others

Have strong entelechy: (from Greek for "having a goal"): the need for self-determination, for self-actualization

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