Your Rainforest Mind

Support For The Excessively Curious, Creative, Smart & Sensitive


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.YRM Front Cover

(from my book Your Rainforest Mind: A Guide to the Well-Being of Gifted Adults and Youth)


33 thoughts on “THE QUIZ

  1. I thought I was alone

    Liked by 1 person

  2. At almost 60, I am still trying to find out how to function in this world.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Literally, tears in my eyes as I read this. Here I was always thinking something was wrong with me.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I alphabetize my spices, my music. I arrange my clothes by sleeve length. Now I now why. Rainforest mind. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I was sitting here just before this thinking I MUST HAVE. A mental illness because I cannot find connection with anyone in my job, I am often left alone or ignored or told to calm down… but when they do talk to me it’s 20 steps ago for me!! Is this for real???

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Paula, I honestly thought I was just weird and alone. Thank you so much for this. ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  7. It’s pretty moving to discover a new perspective on oneself that helps to reframe our self-understanding, therefore operating a relieving shift from “weirdo” to somewhere closer from “just delightfully different”. Thank you for this sweet epiphany 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m 21. Finished my third year of college. I’ve been to 4 different colleges. I’ve changed my major 6 times. I have a 3.9 gpa but feel like I’m cheating somehow. I have enough credits to be a senior but not enough in any specific field to graduate within the next two years. This is exhausting. It’s impossible to chose and every time I choose I change my mind in a year.

    I just want to say thank you for this. I was identified as gifted as a child but never heard the term multipotentiality until tonight and I’m thrilled that I’m not alone. Don’t know if I’ll ever pick a major before I run out of loans, but at least I’m not the only one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m so happy you found us, Mikayla. So happy! If you type multipotentiality or multipotentialite into the search engine, you’ll see the other posts on the topic. But keep reading. There might be other posts that fit for you, too. You’re not the only one!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Thank you so much!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I feel like you know me. I just finished my first year of college and I get very stressed about trying to figure out “what to become”. Reading through your blog is helping me a lot. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Oh. My. Goodness! I just read about myself while taking this quiz. All my life I have felt these things, alone, feeling as if I were going crazy. Thank you! Even before reading your book & blog, I have found answers I’ve been searching for. And, as a coincidence, I love your hair! I, too, have hair-with-a-mind-of-its-own that I am learning to love. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Hello Paula, today, a friend referred me to the work of Dabrowski and now, because of my intense curiosity, I have discovered this sensational place Most of my life (I’m 71) I’ve felt un-understood by most people, so a few years ago I just thought “fuck it, I don’t care anymore, I’m 50 and if people can’t handle me they can go jump” I think it was the jokes reference that confirmed it: Noone thinks my jokes are funny, and my colleagues think I’m a conspiracy theorist because I talk about Fukushima. I teach singing and was a professional singer for many years and Opera kept me occupied and sane as music still does.The music in my head never stops and when a tune drives me crazy, I just change it ! I’ve only recently started to understand that my love problems have always been due to mismanagement of personality differences and realising I’m an Artisan and what I’m not good at in relationships is helping tremendously. I think lots of people will love your site. Thanks Paula.Bill.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Is it possible for an adult to score get an average score on IQ test, 106, and still identify as a gifted adult? Or am I just deluding myself?

    Liked by 1 person

    • An IQ test is just one measure. There can be many reasons you didn’t test gifted. Some people just don’t test well. Some overthink tests or don’t have a cultural background that matches the test designers. Or are sick when taking the test. Or…. So, if you fit many of the traits I describe here, I’d suspect that you’re on the spectrum!


  14. I think another challenge is assuming that everyone thinks this way or feels this way – not realizing that we are unique. We often surround ourselves with similar people and our children/parents are often the same so it feels familiar but dont realize that outside of that circle it’s different.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I felt like shouting “YES” at ALL of these and by the end found myself actually nodding my head and thinking “100%!?!” I haven’t seen it put into words in this way and I’ve seen a fair amount in my gifted learning journey so far. I’m definitely curious to hear more!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Loved your totally unscientific quiz! You had me at “ 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?” 😂 I was so happy, as I kept saying “yes” after reading each question, feeling finally, someone gets me! Thank you. I appreciate your sharing! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

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