Do you have a rainforest mind?
Take the following totally, completely and utterly unscientific quiz to find out.
• Like the rain forest, are you intense, multilayered, colorful, creative, overwhelming, highly sensitive, complex, idealistic, and influential?
• Are you misunderstood, misdiagnosed, and mysterious?
• Like the rain forest, have you met too many chainsaws?
• Do people tell you to lighten up when you are just trying to enlighten them?
• Are you overwhelmed by breathtaking sunsets, itchy clothes, strong perfumes, clashing colors, bad architecture, buzzing that no one else hears, angry strangers, needy friends, or global hunger?
• Do you see ecru, beige, and sand where others see only white?
• Do you spend hours looking for the exact word, precise flavor, smoothest texture, right note, perfect gift, finest color, most meaningful discussion, fairest solution, or deepest connection?
• Have you ever called yourself ADHD because you are easily distracted by new ideas or intricate cobwebs, or OCD because you alphabetize your home library or color-code your sweaters, or bipolar because you go from ecstasy to despair in 10 minutes?
• Are you passionate about learning, reading, and research, yet perplexed, perturbed, and perspiring about schooling?
• Do your intuition and empathy tell you what family members, neighbors, and stray dogs think, feel, or need even before they know what they think, feel, or need?
• Do you find decision-making about your future career and deciding what color to paint the bedroom equally daunting due to the deluge of possibilities assaulting your frontal lobes?
• Are your favorite spiritual conversations the ones you have with trees, rocks, and babbling brooks?
• Does your worth depend on your achievements, so that if you make a mistake or do not perform up to your standards, you feel like an utter failure as a human being now and forever more?
• Do you crave intellectual stimulation and are you desperate to find even one person who is fascinated by fractals or thrilled by theology?
• Are you embarrassed to tell your family and friends that you find it easier to fall in love with ideas than with people?
• Have you ruminated about the purpose of life and your contribution to the betterment of humanity since you were young?
• Do you get blank, confused stares from people when you think you have just said something really funny?
• Are people awestruck at what you can accomplish in a day, but if they knew the real you, they would see that you are actually a lazy, procrastinating, slacking impostor?
• Are you afraid of: failure/success, losing/winning, criticism/praise, mediocrity/excellence, stagnation/change, not fitting in/fitting in, low expectations/high expectations, boredom/intellectual challenge, not being normal/being normal?
• Do you long to drive a Ferrari at top speed on the open road, but find yourself always stuck on the freeway in L.A. during rush hour?
• Do you love skipping down new sensual paths and exploring imaginary worlds to discover beautiful connections between fascinating objects, words, ideas, or images?
• Do you wonder how you can feel like “not enough” and “too much” at the same time?
• Are you uncomfortable with the label “gifted,” and sure that if you were to use the word as a descriptor of people with some sort of advanced intelligence—which you would not because it is so offensive—that it certainly would not apply to you.
If you answered “yes” to at least 12 of the above questions, you likely have a rainforest mind. If you ruminated about the answers to many of these questions and often thought “it depends,” you, too, fit the profile.