Once the gifted know who they are and who they are not, they gain strength, confidence, and resilience. From then on it’s a matter of building skills—of getting smart about being smart. Once equipped, they find that the world in which they must make their way is far more manageable. Mary-Elaine Jacobsen
Sainte Chapelle Cathedral's Rose Window. Paris France Photo: Nicole Meldahl

We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we're curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.    Walt Disney

We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we're curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.

Walt Disney

Characteristics of Gifted, Talented & Creative Adults

Email Lynne or Call Lynne at 310-828-7121 to schedule a session, begin coaching or arrange a free phone conversation about the benefits of Coaching or Therapy for Gifted Adults

Where there is an open mind, there will always be a frontier. Charles F. Kettering

Autonomy is a basic human need and, thus, healthy development requires autonomy-supportive environments.
— Bonnie Benard
Never let the odds keep you from pursuing what you know in your heart you were meant to do.
— Satchel Paige
Self-awareness, emotional and intellectual balance, and an appreciation of the people in your life are the foundation-stones of a life well lived. Sietze Vanderheide     Lolinda's Dining Room, San Francisco    Photo: Lynne Azpeitia

Self-awareness, emotional and intellectual balance, and an appreciation of the people in your life are the foundation-stones of a life well lived. Sietze Vanderheide
Lolinda's Dining Room, San Francisco Photo: Lynne Azpeitia

Beyond talent lie all the usual words: discipline, love, luck, but most of all, endurance.
— James Baldwin

 Characteristics of Gifted & Creative Adults

The first question gifted adults ask me is, "How do you know I'm gifted?

This is how I answer that question.

First, I tell each gifted adult what I've noticed.  Second, because I know that gifted adults must always make up their own mind, I give them a list of characteristics and ask them to read it and see if they recognize themselves.

Then we talk.

This is the list I give to the gifted, talented & creative adults I work with in my coaching and psychotherapy practice. 

While there were many lists of characteristics available to choose from, I put this information together specifically to answer fully that first key question--the question which unlocks the door to a whole new way of seeing and understanding oneself and the world.

To me what's written here expresses the essential experience of being a gifted adult.

The gifted adults from all over the globe who do Gifted Adult coaching or psychotherapy with me tell me that they find this information and these books very helpful to them with the stresseschallenges, and opportunities they face in their everyday living, loving, and learning experiences as a gifted adult.

What do you think?  

Are You Gifted?  
Check the List & See for Yourself

Gifted adults differ intellectually from others and are more sophisticated, more global thinkers who have the capacity to generalize and to see the complex relationships in the world.

Gifted adults have a heightened capacity to appreciate the beauty and the wonderment in our universe. They deeply experience the richness of the world and see beauty in human relations, nature, literature.

Gifted adults crave interchanging ideas with other gifted adults and many love to engage in intense intellectual discussions. 

Gifted adults have an inner urge to fulfill their own expectations and feel very guilty if they cannot even when no one else sees the need to.

One of the most outstanding features of gifted adults is their sense of humor which differs from others and consists often of subtle jokes, intricate teasing or puns. Gifted people often find that their jokes are received with silence because they are not understood.

Here are many of the books I recommend to my gifted clients.

Gifted adults often have strong feelings encompassing many areas of life and have difficulty understanding the seemingly inconsistent and shortsighted behavior of others because they can see the foolishness, unfairness and danger of many actions in public and personal life.

Gifted adults have a special problem awareness. They have the ability to predict consequences, see relationships, and foresee problems which are likely to occur.

Because gifted adults know more what is at stake, risk taking for a gifted person may be more difficult than for others because it may take longer for them to decide.

Gifted adults often develop their own method of learning and grasping concepts which can lead to conflict with others who don’t use or understand their method.

Gifted adults have normal feelings of anxiety, inadequacies and personal needs. They struggle to have these needs met and taken care of just like all human beings do.

 Contact Lynne About Her Services for Gifted Adults

Gifted adults are often confronted with the problem of having too many abilities in too many areas in which they would like to work, discover and excel.

Gifted adults are often driven by their giftedness and may be overwhelmed by the pressure of their creativity. Giftedness is a drive, an energy, an necessity to act—it’s a need for mastery, intellectually, creatively, and physically which grows from the need to make sense of the world, to understand the world and to create one’s world.

Gifted adults need time for inner life experiences, and to understand themselves. Because it takes quiet time to clarify thoughts and feelings, gifted adults need contemplation, solitude and daydreaming

Gifted adults relate best to others who share their interests.

Gifted adults may have a small circle of friends or sometimes only one, but the relationships are meaningful.

Gifted adults are independent thinkers who do not just automatically accept the decisions of their supervisors. They function well in a participatory community and with those who are accepting of their attitudes and innovations.

 Call Lynne at 310-828-7121 about her Gifted Adult Services

Gifted adults have strong moral convictions and many use their specific talents, insights and knowledge for the betterment of the world.

Gifted adults have an understanding of the complexities and interrelatedness of global affairs and have the capacity to replace shortsighted, short-term reactions with careful overall solutions

Adapted from "Gifted Adults: Their Characteristics and Emotions" 
by Annemarie Roeper

Lynne Azpeitia, MFT
3025 Olympic Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404 

Coaching, Psychotherapy & Consultation

For more than a decade I've been working with gifted and creative adults, teens and children as a psychotherapist, counselor,  coachspeaker, trainer, educator, consultant, and mentor specializing in the challengespsychology and development of gifted, talented and creative adults.


 Contact Lynne About Her Services for Gifted Adults

Have a question? Need more information? Call Lynne at 310-828-7121 or Email Lynne  

Coaching, Counseling & Consulting Services Also Available by Phone & Skype

Interested in reading more? Click here for books for Gifted Adults

You gotta have style. It helps you get down the stairs. It helps you get up in the morning. It’s a way of life.
— Diana Vreeland

Lynne Azpeitia
 The Gifted Adult Coach



Working with and getting to know Lynne Azpeitia, a wonderful, healthy gifted adult, has helped me to recognize other healthy gifted adults in my world.
— L.W.
Appreciation is a wonderful thing; It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well.  Voltaire

Appreciation is a wonderful thing; It makes what is excellent in others belong to us as well. Voltaire

Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.
— Maya Angelou

Email Lynne Or Call Lynne At 310-828-7121 to schedule a session, begin coaching or arrange a free phone consultation

Imagine an eye unruled by man-made laws of perspective, an eye unprejudiced by compositional logic, an eye which does not respond to the name of everything but which must know each object encountered in life through an adventure of perception. Stan Brakhage Photo: Lynne Azpeitia El Centro Street, South Pasadena as viewed from Kaldi

Winners have the ability to step back from the canvas of their lives like an artist gaining perspective. They make their lives a work of art—an individual masterpiece.
— Dennis Waitley

Supporting Creative Achievement: An Interview with Therapist Lynne Azpeitia
 Douglas Eby
Actors, performers and other people in the arts usually don't seek therapy "until they're pretty desperate," psychotherapist Lynne Azpeitia admits. "They don't go to a professional until they have to go -- until they think something's really wrong with them, their relationship, their family, or somebody or something at work."  She finds that many of the people who see her "have had previous therapeutic experiences which were.....More

The Three-Ring Conception of Giftedness
 Joseph S. Renzulli, Ed.D.
Research on creative-productive people has consistently shown that although no single criterion can be used to determine giftedness, persons who have achieved recognition because of their unique accomplishments and creative contributions possess a relatively well-defined set of three interlocking clusters of traits. These clusters consist of above average, though not necessarily superior, ability, task commitment, and creativity ......More

Leta Stetter Hollingworth's "Children Above 180 IQ"

When People Find Your Intellect Intimidating — A Guide For Gifted Women
Paula Prober
You don’t do it on purpose. Intimidate people. You’re just being you. In fact, you’re holding back. Slowing down. Smiling. Being gracious. Stifling your curiosity and your perceptions. Carefully selecting from the scores of effervescent thoughts that continuously swirl around in your brain. If they only knew how much you’re NOT showing. Oh, boy. And yet, you still scare them. If they only knew that.....More....

Parents: Is Your Child Gifted?  
Laura Johnson
How Can You Tell If Your Child is Gifted?
The process of identifying gifted and talented children is a very complex and highly controversial topic. Much of the available literature focuses on the recognition and identification of intellectually and/or academically gifted children. Schools that have programs for gifted students are often able to identify gifted kids by using traditional screening methods like group IQ tests, review of achievement test scores and past grades, observation, and getting input from teachers and parents.
Gifted Children Differ in their Giftedness
Even if you child doesn’t score high enough on intellectual or academic achievement tests, there are many forms of giftedness. If you can answer yes to any of the questions below, your child might be gifted in that particular domain. More...

Managing the Blessing & Burden of Being A Gifted, Talented & Creative Adult
Lynne Azpeitia
"Sometimes when you climb a mountain, the oxygen is a little thin.”

Being a Gifted, Talented, and/or Creative adult can be a challenge. There are so many things that you want to do (and are capable of doing) that it can be overwhelming to figure out what to focus on first…
And there’s also the trouble of dealing with people who are jealous and don’t really understand you, which can lead to even more challenges in relationships or at the workplace. If this is you and you’ve been going through a season of struggle, support is on the way. There are healers who have trained their entire careers to be there for you when times get tough. Our guest today is one of them. Lynne Azpeitia joins us to talk about how to create a focused, balanced, and goal-oriented daily routine that puts Self-Appreciation at the forefront, and is created with your unique needs in mind. Join us for some love, laughs, and “ah-ha” moments as we explore how you can "Manage the Blessing and Burden of Being a Gifted, Talented, and/or Creative Adult". More…

Characteristics of Extreme Intelligence
In Growing Up Gifted, Dr. Barbara Clark reviewed the research of Dahlberg, Gross, Koppel, Lovecky and Silverman, and listed the following as characteristics commonly found among highly gifted individuals.....More

High Achiever, Gifted Learner, Creative Thinker
Bertie Kingore, Ph.D.
 Identification of gifted students is clouded when concerned adults misinterpret high achievement as giftedness. High-achieving students are noticed for their on-time, neat, well-developed, and correct learning products. Some adults assume these students are gifted because their school-appropriate behaviors and products surface above the typical responses of grade-level students.
Educators with expertise in gifted education are frustrated trying to help other educators and parents understand that while high achievers are valuable participants whose high-level modeling is welcomed in classes, they learn differently from gifted learners. In situations in which they are respected and encouraged, gifted students' thinking is more complex with abstract inferences and more diverse perceptions than is typical of high achievers.....More…

What Psychotherapists Need to Know About Gifted Clients
Paula Prober

If you are a counselor or other mental health practitioner or if you’re gifted and want to see a psychotherapist, there are some things that you need to know.
The rainforest mind is complicated. Like the jungle, it’s breathtaking in its capacity to create: Thoughts, emotions, questions, sensitivities, worries, beauty, and iPhones. It’s intense and overwhelming.
The rainforest mind, in counseling, needs deep, empathetic, authentic understanding of its fascinating and convoluted intricacies.
Your counselor will need to recognize how you are different. Here are some clues a practitioner can use. A gifted adult may have any or all of the following..More...

Highly Gifted Children At Home
Karen Morse
Individuals who score above IQ 145 are considered highly gifted. The range of 90 or more IQ points beyond includes the exceptionally gifted IQ 160+, and the profoundly gifted 180+. Silverman (1994) found that the highly gifted are as different from their moderately gifted peers as the gifted are from average learners and encompass a range larger than their mentally handicapped counterparts. They have value structures so different from their chronological peers that they are able to make greater sense of the world and the disparity between their perception of it and that of the average learner. They seldom seek popularity or acclaim and often prefer isolation as a catalyst for much needed quiet reflection. In fact because of their modesty, researchers think that there are more than 25% of the highly gifted population who remain unidentified. More...

Traits of the Greats 
 Bob Kodzus
So you want to be a creative genius - this articles distills the basic traits of many of the creative geniuses throughout history and in modern times.  This may be my most critically acclaimed Quest so far! .....More

The Multinodality of Gifted Thinkers  
Brock & Fernette Eide
Functional brain magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) brings exciting new insights into our understanding of how gifted thinkers think. The first thing you notice when you look at the fMRIs of gifted groups is that it looks like a 'brain on fire.' Bright red blazes of high metabolic activity burst out all over the scan. Each red patch represents millions of microcombustion events in which glucose is metabolized to provide fuel for the working brain. Gifted brains are remarkably intense and diffuse metabolizers. But the amazing insights do not stop there. The orchestration of activity is planned and complex, and it seems to require the coordination of diverse visual, spatial, verbal, and sensory areas of brain. Gifted thinkers are rarely one-mode thinkers. Rather, they are great organizers of diverse and multi-modal information. For teachers and parents of young gifted thinkers, we begin to understand why certain young gifted thinkers go awry, and why organization should be an essential aspect of gifted education...More

The Talent of Being Inconvenient: On the Societal Functions of Giftedness 
Roland S. Persson, Ph.D. 

Why are gifted children and adolescents often “inconvenient” in the schools? 
You can be “inconvenient” in any number of ways, of course, but in relation to being academically gifted, it is not always appreciated amongst teachers or other students to be a “know-it-all”: one who usually has all the correct answers. Even though I think this is a universal problem, to some degree it is also one differentiated by culture. In school systems where children are expected to be more passive receivers of knowledge, it is not likely that any child being too independent of mind or action is much appreciated if diverting from expected behavior. In school systems where children are more active and learning is more of a cooperation between teachers and students, tolerance is likely to be greater. But being too extreme would be a problem there as well. More…

Counseling, Multiple Exceptionality, and Psychological Issues
Edward R. Amend
As a licensed clinical psychologist specializing in giftedness… I, too, am concerned about the too frequent mis-diagnosis and over-diagnosis of gifted and talented youth….Asperger’s Disorder is another that is becoming commonly mis-diagnosed in gifted youth. Although there can be similarities between a gifted child and a child with Asperger’s Disorder, there are very clear differences. Thorough evaluation is necessary to distinguish gifted children’s sometimes unusual and sometimes unique social interactions from Asperger’s Disorder….
A “qualitative impairment” in social interaction is one of the two main characteristics of Asperger’s Disorder. Although the DSM-IV gives fairly explicit criteria for this type of social impairment, which does sometimes appear in gifted kids, the highly gifted child’s atypical social interactions or unusual modes of commenting and joking may often be misinterpreted as being characteristics of Asperger’s Disorder. However, a closer look at the criteria shows differences between Asperger’s Disorder and behaviors associated with gifted children. For example, a lack of social or emotional reciprocity is characteristic of Asperger’s Disorder while gifted children most often show a tremendous concern for others. They may not always know how to express it appropriately, but the concern is there. More…