Gifted women sometimes suffer more in society, despite being gifted. It’s like the best thing about them becomes their biggest and worst enemy. Now the question is, does it have to be?
Do you suffer from the Imposter Syndrome?
Do you unconsciously push away success?
Are you being held back by conventional values, gender stereotypes, toxic envy and attacks?
The Gifted Woman (9 Signs)
The gifted woman…
- – has complex and deep thoughts, and feels intense emotions.
- – has a desire to learn and grow, a passion for knowledge and a love for complex ideas.
- – zealously search for patterns, logic and meaning in all things.
- – is an independent thinker from a young age. She develops her own set of values rather than relying on an external structure.
- – has high standards, and hold herself and others up to high moral values.
- – questions authority, and sometimes feels sad and frustrated about the state of the world.
- – uses her deep feelings and her intellectual capabilities to create art and to make meaning in the world.
- – is both the yin and the yang. She is both purposeful and patient, both independent and cooperative, both adventurous and dependable, both courageous and tender.
- – holds the paradox between change and acceptance, she takes affirmative actions but with a forgiving heart.
Gifted people have traits that set them apart, and these traits may not be connected to intellectual intelligence, IQ, or the conventional idea of creativity and success. Having these traits mean they feel a deep sense of being different and isolated from a young age, and many have been misunderstood and pathologized. This is particularly true for gifted women, as many of them do not fit into society’s stereotypes and expectations.
(If you still cringe at the notion of the word ‘gifted’, it may be worth revisiting what I mean by that, and the ways your gifts may be manifesting themselves)
What Happened To The Gifted Girls?
Insecurities in talented females can be found at all age level (Reis 1998). Numerous studies have found that as girls get older, their self-esteem drops:
- Girls who are as young as 6-8 lack confidence and expect to fail when compared to boys of the same age (Bardwick, 1972).
- Most girls remain enthusiastic and assertive at ages 8 and 9, but lose confidence in their abilities at ages 13 and 14 and emerge from high school with measurably lowered goals.
- The decrease in girls’ self-esteem is three times greater than boys (AAUW, 1991).
- The same happens in college years:
- Female graduates who attended a school for gifted students did not believe in their superior intelligence (Walker, Reis, & Leonard, 1992).
- A study found as female valedictorians got older, they show more doubts about their own abilities, despite receiving higher grades throughout college (Arnold, 1995).
And in the workplace:
• As compared to their male counterpart, gifted women express more doubt about their abilities, compare and criticise themselves more.
External Barriers For The Gifted Women
Barriers to the gifted women achieving their full potential are both external and internal— societal and psychological. Societal factors include conscious and unconscious discrimination, sexism, lack of structural support and resources. Though the picture has changed tremendously in the last two decades, many of these factors still linger.
According to the World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Report in 2016, the global gender gap across health, education, economic opportunity and politics has closed only by 4 percent in the past ten years. Women around the world on average are earning just over half of what men earn despite working longer hours. Only four countries in the world having equal numbers of male and female legislators, senior officials and managers, despite the fact that 95 countries now have as many – if not more – women educated at university level.