Your Rainforest Mind

Support For The Excessively Curious, Creative, Smart & Sensitive

The Gifted Adult’s Guide to Finding Friends

10 Comments

photo courtesy of Brooke Cagle, Unsplash, CC

photo courtesy of Brooke Cagle, Unsplash, CC

You’re sensitive. Empathetic. Funny. Generous. Smart. Adorable. And yet, you have trouble finding friends.

I’m here to help.

I’ve gathered my five favorite posts on relationships here so that you don’t need to go searching for them. I’d suggest that you read them all to get my comprehensive take on this topic. You’ll be able to pick and choose from the many suggestions and you’ll see that the reason you’re lonely is not because you’re a hopeless weirdo slacker ne’er-do-well. But because you’re gifted.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started:

If I’m So Smart, Why Am I So Lonely  (This one has a link at the end to more posts on relationships written by parents of gifted children.)

Gifted? Lonely? Learn The Argentine Tango  (You won’t want to miss the quote from Maria Popova.)

Lonely? Find Your Pips  (This one has a link at the end by a different group of parents of gifted kids, also on this topic.)

Lonely? Find Your Pips–Part Two  (This is where I get all spiritual on you.)

Single? Lonely? Gifted? Listen Up  (I’m not saying here that you shouldn’t be happy if you’re single!! Nooooo. I’m just saying that if you’re single and want a partner, here are some ideas. And this post also includes ideas for finding friends, too, so don’t skip over it.)

One more thing: When you’re clearer about who you are, you’ll be better able to spot other rainforest minds. If you’re doing something you love, at work or at play, and you spot one who has potential, be brave and initiate a conversation. Ask them questions about themselves. They will thank you! If they lead a busy life, don’t let that stop you. You may have to do the work to build the relationship at first. But if your intuition says they’re a good one, keep at it. Eventually the person will reciprocate and the relationship will be more balanced. I know that this works because it’s how I created my lovely circle of dear rainforest-y friends. But you have to be patient and persistent. OK?

One last thing: Don’t forget the online groups. Also, my book has a chapter on loneliness with even more suggestions. And, if you want to hang out with rainforest minds on a daily basis, well, become a counselor/consultant for the gifted. Start a blog. Write a book.

You’ll be so glad you did.

__________________________

To my bloggEEs: How have you found other rainforest minds? How do you deal with loneliness? Thank you for being here and for opening your hearts.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Author: Paula Prober

I'm a psychotherapist in private practice in Eugene, Oregon. I specialize in counseling gifted adults and consulting with parents of gifted children. The label "gifted" is often controversial and confusing. I use the metaphor of the rain forest to describe this population. Like the rain forest, these individuals are quite complex, highly sensitive, intense, multi-layered, and misunderstood. They're also curious, idealistic, highly intelligent, creative, perfectionistic, and they love learning. I've been an adjunct instructor at the University of Oregon and a guest presenter at Oregon State University and Pacific University. I've written articles on giftedness for the Eugene Register-Guard, the Psychotherapy Networker, and Advanced Development Journal. My book, Your Rainforest Mind: A Guide to the Well-Being of Gifted Adults and Youth, was released in June 2016 by GHF Press and is available on Amazon or at your independent bookstore.

10 thoughts on “The Gifted Adult’s Guide to Finding Friends

  1. Thank you for linking all your inspiring posts on this important topic together, Paula. Your book helped enormously in clarifying my thinking about myself and how I relate to others, and since then I’ve been experiencing other people differently.

    Especially helpful to me are your reminders about making an effort with other people. As a sensitive introvert it’s easy to feel rebuffed and then not bother pursuing a relationship, but when I look back, all my most meaningful friendships started because the other person took a risk and reached out to me (who probably wasn’t giving out many positive signals and was very busy!).

    I had a wonderful experience recently on a 3 day course with my cognitive hypnotherapy organisation (the Quest Institute). I didn’t know anyone else on the course beforehand except the teacher and his wife. But I felt known, loved and accepted by everyone there from the moment I walked in. I think it was because the values of Trevor and Rebecca (whom I’ve known for many years) cascade down through everyone they’ve ever trained and their entire organisation. It was an utterly transformational 3 days and I know I’ve made at least one friend for life. Now I just need to make the time to stay connected. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Paula, hey there. I’m having trouble playing your webinar… as in, I can’t see it anywhere!!! Funny, I watched some of it this morning, but now at home after work, I am unable to. Any suggestions? I was so looking forward to watching the rest of it!

    Like

  3. I’ve written about this before, but I grew up and live in a conservative, working class part of the country. This is a place where being different could get you a free ticket to the hospital courtesy of the local rednecks who drove around town hunting “freaks” for sport. It has gotten a bit more multi-cultural, cosmopolitan and tolerant than it was in my youth and early adulthood, but it still has a long way to go towards being a place that attracts more gifted and talented people than it repels. So… yeah, finding friends here is tough, especially ones that have not let this place completely crush their personal weirdness and wild, pretentious dreams.

    But anyway, my own experiences coping with being different among what seems like a majority who dislike the different is simply a lead-in to share my recent accidental discovery of a great little book called “Pretentiousness: Why It Matters” by Dan Fox.

    I assume pretentiousness is a crime that many gifted have been accused of, but the author makes a great case for pretentiousness. It has reminded me that my many lofty, crazy, artsy-fartsy dreams scare me mostly because I have let others convince me that they are scary, so I highly recommend it.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Pingback: Linkables  – The Questing Child

  5. Pingback: How Can I Be Authentic When I Overwhelm Everyone? | Your Rainforest Mind

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