Today, Matthieu Play shares his vision of giftedness through the Gifted Interview. Thank you, Matthieu! He is a Therapist, Artist and Author. He currently lives in Morbihan, France.
.IF I COULD CHOOSE, WOULD I STILL BE GIFTED?
If I could choose today, I would live exactly the same life but with several bodies! I have so many beautiful experiences that I can’t be present enough for each one. But it’s a frustration that’s only matched by the joy I’ve felt over the past few years.
.WHAT BEING GIFTED MEANS TO ME
For me, being gifted means being in need of moving from “solitary survival” to “life”. Either in great suffering when this is impossible, or in immense joy when it becomes accessible. This is my experience, in any case.
Giftedness is the ontic incompatibility with group survival. It is the impossibility of feeling fulfilled by the ready-to-be, to do and to think that seem sufficient when one has a feeling of belonging to a group or groups.
This does not mean to me that solitary survival makes more sense than group survival. I just found that I couldn’t feel included. I suffered a lot from this, as much as I could claim it as a pride or a value.
In this, giftedness is a very powerful internal duality. The desire to be like others is as strong as the pride of not being.
In my case, ignorance of my giftedness made me hate humanity, as much as I would have liked to have loved it. Today I love humanity, and I feel singularly included in it, to my great happiness.
.IF I HAD TO CHOOSE AN IMAGE OR A KEYWORD THAT SUMS UP WHAT GIFTEDNESS MEANS
For me, being gifted is not about being right or having the truth, it is about being a “dissonance detector”.
It is to feel deeply when “it sounds false”.
.HOW LONG HAVE I KNOWN ABOUT IT?
I learned by a curious coincidence that I was gifted in 2015.
.WHAT PHASES HAVE I GONE THROUGH SINCE MY DISCOVERY?
I have authorized myself, I have “authored myself” (becoming the author of my life). More and more.
At first, I had to digest the information, then I realised that the story you tell yourself about yourself is really decisive. My point of view on the world and on myself changed completely. I revealed myself.
I went from being formally forbidden to act in the matter, to enjoying being who I am and doing what it takes to make life fun where it is Matthieu.
.HOW DO I EXPLAIN IT TO SOMEONE WHO HAS NEVER HEARD OF IT?
First, I don’t explain it as an injunction to live the same thing as me. Everyone will experience it in their own way, at their own speed, with their own means, limits and sensitivity. That must be respected, I think it’s essential.
I don’t necessarily talk about it around me, but sometimes the subject comes up in conversation. I don’t like to describe giftedness, I like to celebrate life in this form in “fireworks” mode, even if I feel it is more like a “fire of freedom”.
I take more pleasure in exploring what is there for me and the other person than in talking about giftedness specifically.
.THE REMARK WHICH BLEW ME AWAY MOST WHEN I TALKED ABOUT IT
I was surprised that no one attacked me head-on about this discovery by disqualifying me. The reactions of the people I spoke to were positive and supportive, or neutral and indifferent, but never accusatory. I would like to take the opportunity of this interview to thank each person for letting me live this quietly.
And then what struck me was the “I am gifted too!”. I didn’t expect to hear so many, because a few days before I knew it, it wasn’t a topic at all in my reality.
.HOW IT CHANGED MY LIFE (TO KNOW IT)
It has allowed me to move decisively from refusing to be embodied to celebrating being alive. I went from being incapable to capable.
.WHAT I HAVE ALLOWED MYSELF TO DO EVER SINCE
I allow myself my multipotentiality, and that is really wonderful! I now have the freedom to follow my impulses as legitimate and essential to me, and to accept that they are anecdotal from the point of view of others.
.WHAT IT CREATES TO OTHERS WHEN I TALK ABOUT IT
It depends on whom the other person is. I no longer need my reality to be endorsed by others. It will create what the other feels is a legitimate reaction for them. And it’s really perfect like that!
.WHAT IRRITATES ME WITH GIFTEDNESS
Nothing about giftedness annoys me. It’s a shifting concept that can’t be pinned down, like the gifted themselves. I don’t need the term to be a tangible reality for others anymore. I experienced what I had to experience when I discovered my own. Today it is no longer a subject. I am a subject! And it’s much more fun that way.
.WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO EMPHASIZE ABOUT GIFTEDNESS
The freedom of each person to give credit or not, for him or herself and for others. The freedom of everyone to take the test or not.
It’s a box for those who didn’t have one. Personally, I see the labels (of which giftedness is one) as an airlock, allowing one to open up to one’s membership of humanity in the final analysis.
Whether it’s giftedness, ASD, high sensitivity, multipotentiality … The principle is always the same: labels can be shackles, but I prefer when they become locks that lead to our common humanity.
.WHAT I PERSONALLY FIND TO BE THE MOST DIFFICULT
Not going off in all directions, not tiring people with my intensity.
Not having several bodies to live everything I am passionate about to the fullest!
.WHAT I PERSONALLY LOVE
Going off in all directions. Being intense. To have only one body to visit everything I am passionate about and to embody the joy of being a synthesis of it all, imperfect and joyful, included in a greater perfection whose unfathomable mystery has the merit of giving horizons towards which to cheerfully walk to experience. To live!
.MY WELLBEING TOOL OR PRACTICE THAT HELPS ME MOST
Be gentle with me. To start from the principle that everything is relevant, sometimes made up of several pertinences that have not yet met.
.A MISREPRESENTATION THAT I WANT TO CALL INTO QUESTION
To need more complexity to be satisfied is not always a sign of superior intelligence, but perhaps simply the expression of a greater demand on others and on oneself.
.WHAT I WANT TO SAY TO GIFTED PEOPLE
I love you. And I wish you to find your way from solitary survival to life.
.WHAT I WANT TO SAY TO PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT CONCERNED
I love you. And I wish you the best in whatever form it takes for you.
.WHAT I WOULD RECOMMEND TO SOMEONE WHO IS WONDERING
- If they are wondering whether they pass the test:
“Be gentle with yourself. It’s normal to have doubts. It’s normal to have something at stake. It’s okay to want to be after the test before you’ve started. It’s just a strange time to pass.”
- And if you prefer, you can meet professionals specialised in supporting gifted people without taking the test. You don’t have to be a certified black belt in judo to be legitimately passionate about this subject and learn things about yourself through this keen interest.
.THE MISTAKE NOT TO MAKE FOR A GIFTED PERSON
Wanting to play the role of the whole of Life instead of living one’s own. You can try to do this for a long time, but you will never win in this game.
It is not a mistake strictly speaking, but you can lose a lot of feathers.
.MY PROFESSIONAL ADVICE FOR GIFTED
If you are unhappy with what is on offer, invent your own job.
.MY PERSONAL ADVICE FOR GIFTED
Be gentle with yourself. Don’t try to be perfect, dance with it.
.IS IT A WASTE NOT TO KNOW THAT YOU ARE GIFTED?
In my situation, it was retroactively. And it was a relevant waste, which is fully part of me and my joy now. But each situation is unique, so I can’t say anything in absolute terms.
.WHEN I MEET ANOTHER GIFTED PERSON, DO I RECOGNIZE HIM.HER? BY WHAT?
I think so, by the fluidity of the exchanges, or by the fluidity that I guess is possible without being able to experience it at the time. It’s a matter of intensity, of radiance, too. But once again, this is very subjective.
.WHAT DO GIFTED PEOPLE HAVE IN COMMON?
Their awareness of existential loneliness. And the abysmal vertigo that this represents for each of them. Their awareness of absurdity, which I believe is a consequence of this solitude in living together.
.AN INSPIRATION FROM ANOTHER COUNTRY ON GIFTEDNESS
Musician Jacob Collier, who has not, to my knowledge, spoken of giftedness in relation to himself, but I have no doubt that he is. The videos of him making the audience sing are overwhelmingly beautiful. It is magical.
.A WISH FOR THE FUTURE
That we become aware, as far as possible, that when you embody your difference without challenging others, without wanting to prove anything to them, you just have to live it and offer it to yourself and to others.
.A HUNCH ON THE SUBJECT
This is an intuition that I imagine is controversial for many people. So I won’t share it until I have explored it a little.
.THE MISSING QUESTION, WHICH I WOULD HAVE LIKED TO ANSWER ON THE SUBJECT?
Does giftedness define you more than your humanity?
My answer is no.