Today, Nathalie Alsteen shares her vision of giftedness through the Gifted Interview. Thank you, Nathalie! She is a Coach, Therapist, Author, and expert on Giftedness. She currently lives in Belgium.
.IF I COULD CHOOSE, WOULD I STILL BE GIFTED?
Absolutely, I wouldn’t change that for anything in the world
.WHAT (MY OWN) GIFTEDNESS MEANS TO ME
A world of EXTRA ordinary possibilities, an intense and meaningful life.
.IF I HAD TO CHOOSE AN IMAGE OR A KEYWORD THAT SUMS UP WHAT GIFTEDNESS MEANS
E.T. 😉 The little extraterrestrial (not the only one but so meaningful) – I translated it as “Emotionally Talented”.
.HOW LONG HAVE I KNOWN ABOUT IT?
Almost 10 years.
.WHAT PHASES HAVE I GONE THROUGH SINCE MY DISCOVERY?
In the beginning, it was a real firework, a loss of reference points, and at the same time so much meaning. A new look at myself and my talents, I allowed myself many things. Then, a reconnection with my deep nature and the development of my authenticity. Today, Giftedness is no longer important as a label, it is just an aspect of me.
.HOW DO I EXPLAIN IT TO SOMEONE WHO HAS NEVER HEARD OF IT?
It depends on the person, the moment, and the request 😉 But basically, I start by explaining that these are people who are “wired” differently and have a high sensitivity.
.THE REMARK WHICH BLEW ME AWAY MOST WHEN I TALKED ABOUT IT
A colleague and it hurt me deeply “Pff, that’s another trendy subject. You’ll talk to me about it again when you’ve taken the test and show me the paper.
.HOW IT CHANGED MY LIFE (TO KNOW IT)
Both everything and nothing.
It is mainly the way I look at myself and my past that has changed. It has given me authorizations that have given me wings.
But I still have the same friends, and the same job (in general at least).
.WHAT I HAVE ALLOWED MYSELF TO DO EVER SINCE
To tell me that I am ok (even if I feel out of step or that some people don’t understand me).
.WHAT IT CREATES TO OTHERS WHEN I TALK ABOUT IT
Curiosity, the desire to understand. That said, I don’t talk about it unless I’m asked (outside of my profession, of course). Very often people ask me how I came to write a book on the subject or to create a gifted conference.
.WHAT IRRITATES ME WITH GIFTEDNESS
In being gifted? Nothing, it’s just a way of functioning with its advantages and disadvantages.
In the way some people talk about it: the victimization aspect, I really have a problem with that.
.WHAT I WOULD LIKE TO EMPHASIZE ABOUT GIFTEDNESS
All the possibilities it offers! (I think I already do) and the richness that this intense life can give us when we welcome it.
.WHAT I PERSONALLY FIND TO BE THE MOST DIFFICULT
To arrive somewhere or to speak with someone with the impression that I am an alien and that we do not speak the same language or that we have a completely different processing speed. Now I say to myself “Breathe” (thanks to cardiac coherence).
.WHAT I PERSONALLY LOVE
The richness of the exchanges between people concerned by this sensitivity and Giftedness, this desire to remake the world together.
.MY WELLBEING TOOL OR PRACTICE THAT HELPS ME MOST
There are many: cardiac coherence (spontaneously mentioned above). EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) has changed my life and that of my beautiful children by giving me the tools to regulate my emotions when they are very intense 😉
.A MISREPRESENTATION THAT I WANT TO CALL INTO QUESTION
Gifted people have everything to succeed.
.WHAT I WANT TO SAY TO GIFTED PEOPLE
Be yourself, the opposite is exhausting.
.WHAT I WANT TO SAY TO PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT CONCERNED
Be yourself, the opposite is exhausting (the same thing, yes).
.WHAT I WOULD RECOMMEND TO SOMEONE WHO IS WONDERING
To keep asking people who really know about the subject (not always easy to determine when this is the case). In my book “Emotionally Talented: being yourself differently. 6 steps to living fully your high potential” I try to draw a global picture and to dispel some myths.
.THE MISTAKE NOT TO MAKE FOR A GIFTED PERSON
To think that he/she will have to continuously over-adapt in order to be appreciated and to fit in.
.MY PROFESSIONAL ADVICE FOR GIFTED
Just because you know how to do a lot of things efficiently doesn’t mean you have to (even if others insist “but you’re doing it brilliantly”). Be clear about what drives you (including if it’s a variety of tasks) on a professional level and respect yourself in that sense.
.MY PERSONAL ADVICE FOR GIFTED
Do not look for everything that is important to you (we can be very idealistic) in the same person. Personally, I have learned to appreciate each person around me for the aspects I share with them and if I am “missing” something, it is an opportunity to meet new friends.
.A BOOK TO READ ON THE SUBJECT
My book “Emotionally Talented: being yourself differently. 6 steps to living your high potential to the fullest.”
.MY OPINION ABOUT THE IQ WAIS TEST
It doesn’t tell the whole story, which may reassure some people. At this stage, to my knowledge, there is still no test that is adapted to gifted people and that gives them an overview of their way of functioning.
Moreover, beyond the test, I think that it is the way in which it is carried out that is important, including the relationship of trust between the (neuro)psychologist and the person taking the test (because it is about listening that goes beyond a simple test to be taken).
.IS IT A WASTE NOT TO KNOW THAT YOU ARE GIFTED?
There are people who do not know and who live their lives very well!
The waste (although this word does not speak to me) is to miss who you really are.
.WHEN I MEET ANOTHER GIFTED PERSON, DO I RECOGNIZE HIM.HER? BY WHAT?
I think so! As far as I’m concerned, I connect quickly and I don’t need to think about how to communicate, the sauce takes quickly.
.WHAT DO GIFTED PEOPLE HAVE IN COMMON?
Quite a few things, the first word that comes to mind is: curiosity.
.WHAT ARE THE CRUCIAL STEPS NOT TO BE MISSED IN THE “GIFTED JOURNEY” OF A GIFTED PERSON?
As for everyone else, I believe it is fundamental to get to know oneself, including in the way we nourish our needs in a specific way.
.THE LAST THING I LEARNED ON THE SUBJECT (THAT I’D LIKE TO SHARE)
One aspect that caught my attention was the high sensitivity that Gifted people have: hypervigilance seems to be systematic according to Elaine Aron’s studies.
.A GIFTED INSPIRATION FROM ANOTHER COUNTRY
It was in the USA that I discovered the notion of “Twice Exceptionality“, a revelation for me.
.A WISH FOR THE FUTURE
That each gifted person can use his or her talents to make the world a better place.