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    #240907 - 01/05/18 06:25 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: RRD]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2085
    I'm just going to go on the record and say that this was a terrific thread to initiate, and it's clearly resonating with the regulars here. Let's definitely keep the conversation flowing and make this a go-to resource for parents. The adult aspect of the discussion on the forum is nascent and would be exciting to explore!
    _________________________
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

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    #240910 - 01/05/18 06:51 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: MsFriz]
    aquinas Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/02/12
    Posts: 2085
    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    1. Do any/many of you have OEs?

    Yes. I am frequently told not to think/care/plan/worry/do/feel/empathize so much, but I don’t want to be less...I want others to be more, or for them to at least meet me half way.


    Exactly. It's a source of constant frustration for me to see others and how far they fall short of their potential, be it emotional/relational/professional/ethical, etc. I just want to shake them and say, "I don't have to dilute myself just because you choose not to reach your potential." Mediocrity and apathy aren't the objective base on which reality rests. *shudders*

    So yes, commiseration.

    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    The lack of positive feedback and accurate social mirroring also makes it that much harder to respect my own thoughts, perceptions or instincts, which I mostly keep to myself.


    The time dimension makes it hard, too. (This is why I initiated the MBTI thread-- "NT" types are long-range thinkers, and I'm curious to see if they're over-represented in our population.) So many people are so myopic and don't see the forest for the trees. It's hard to communicate meaningfully, and feel connected to a common vision, when one side of the debate is looking at a drastically truncated time horizon.

    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    God, no. I’m dying. I have always felt like a caged cheetah at work, despite changing jobs every 2-3 years, always in the pursuit of the ever-elusive challenge/stimulation.


    Most work is totally stifling in its format. The idea of doing the same set of activities or thinking from the same perspective is so tiring. It seems many of us here are attracted to career paths that, ex ante, look like they provide variety (several here on this thread picked law, I opted for management consulting). Maybe that's the biggest lie our children face in choosing a canned career path--it entails a more limited scope of work than many gifted adults truly crave absent becoming entrepreneurs or mavericks in their field.

    I chose management consulting because the larger firms seemingly provided a wide variety of engagements and required a steep learning curve at project outset. To some extent this is true, but systems-based thinkers quickly find the general model in the individual cases, and it's easy to feel like you're part of a white collar sausage factory pumping out the same boilerplate to every client. (Shhh! Trade secret!) Ugh. It's the same faceless corporate monotony in every client, just with different window dressing. I mean, how much am I really capable of caring about a 3 per cent aggregate cost saving in a company that has no appreciable impact on anything real to any person's life?

    My ex was a lawyer, and I have many friends and family in law (mostly corporate), and they almost universally express similar frustrations to yours unless they get to take on cause-related issues close to their hearts or tackle novel legislation.


    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    I am also realizing that I can’t spend my whole career waiting for employers to mentor me (“I pay you, isn’t that enough?”), promote me, wake up to what I could do for them and take appropriate advantage of my potential. I have a long history of resenting my bosses for having such ridiculously low expectations of me and failing to appreciate my abilities, but I'm learning that that's my problem, not theirs, even if they're at fault.


    This!!! I also struggle with the corporate mentality of having to pay one's dues before achieving seniority, and attribute a lot of gifted adults checking out of their careers to management and incentive systems that poorly measure and reward divergent thought. I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that we've all banged our heads against the wall of a less competent boss (or boss's boss, etc.) who we had objectively demonstrated we could out-perform early in our careers, but who we had to continue to answer to. It's maddening! Then we see our poor children in classrooms with mindless drone teachers who enforce equality because of a misplaced belief that "equal = fair", and it's obvious that is the early stage version of what we're experiencing.

    On a second note, I think this aspect of lacking professional mentorship is particularly troubling for young gifted females. When I started my first professional job, I was 10-15 years younger than my peers, and constantly had to battle the image of being a young bimbo because I was attractive and young. There was one particularly egregious example where a senior exec made a comment about my invitation to participate on a news panel being based on my aesthetic, to which I replied that the invitation was extended to me sight-unseen and my physique was of little interest to people interested in X issue, for which I was a published and well-respected researcher. Again, I have a strong suspicion that most of the women here have had similar experiences.

    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    3. Do you ever feel a bit odd?

    Every minute of the work day. My coworkers, who by conventional measures are more successful than me—more happy, cheerful, content, confident and popular—often strike me as so vacuous and superficial that I have to filter and bite my tongue constantly. They seem to accept most things at face value--don’t question things or appreciate irony, and take any sort of critical thought as negativity. On the plus side, they are so far to one extreme that they make me proud to be a nerd. I’d rather be unhappy and unpopular than have a pleasantly shallow existence.


    My ex used to make similar observations all the time; that there's an optimal IQ range for self-delusion that shallow achievement = happiness. Couldn't agree more.

    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    I also have to constantly dial back my standards and expectations. It feels like there’s a standard formula or adjustment I need to apply to my approach to most things to avoid scaring people off or making them uncomfortable. And yet, I still often fail to scale back far enough. On my first day back at work this week, I was called out in a meeting for accurately and appropriately using the word “subsumed” (“Is that really a word, or did you just make that up?”), bringing the entire discussion to an awkward, embarrassing halt. Sigh.


    Ugh, yes! The "what does that word mean" in a professional setting is maddening! I had one partner I worked for previously ask me why I spoke the way I do, to which I answered, "I assume I'm speaking with an intelligent audience." Snarky, maybe, but if I'm extending someone the courtesy of using my brain, it's because I believe theirs can handle it. Maybe they could just try. I also get the "can you talk slower" request frequently, with the desired pace of some audiences being g l a c i a l. It feels like a Chandler Bing moment from Friends when he shouts at Joey, "Get there faster!!"

    Now, I don't mind different abilities and paces. But when people actively complain and expect to be accommodated for laziness, that's on them, not me.

    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    4. Do you share all of your thoughts with anyone?

    I am now!

    I also relate to almost everything posted above, especially the compulsive drive toward self-improvement and learning. Great thread!


    SO glad you've shared! Your ideas were insightful and proved to be great catalysts for my unintended-but-extensive soapbox rant. smile So thank you for that!
    _________________________
    Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.

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    #240914 - 01/05/18 09:17 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: aquinas]
    RRD Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/04/16
    Posts: 247
    Originally Posted By: aquinas
    Exactly. It's a source of constant frustration for me to see others and how far they fall short of their potential, be it emotional/relational/professional/ethical, etc. I just want to shake them and say, "I don't have to dilute myself just because you choose not to reach your potential."

    It's not surprising that a number of people on this forum seem to feel that way. By way of contrast, rather than being disappointed in others, I'm always second-guessing myself instead. My reaction to this might have something to do with my MBTI type. I am actually an ENFP-T, and it's a strong T. I guess the T stands for unsure of yourself, etc. And it fits with my thoughts on this subject: I always think I haven't contributed enough, haven't accomplished enough, am not advocating sufficiently for our DSs, etc.

    As for others, I just constantly walk around wondering how amazing the world could be if we could somehow harness all of that lost potential. G/T or not, I am quite certain that every individual on this earth has untapped abilities. What would it be like if every individual could be assessed and then nurtured?

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    #240915 - 01/05/18 09:41 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: RRD]
    Dude Offline
    Member

    Registered: 10/04/11
    Posts: 2726
    Quote:
    Ugh, yes! The "what does that word mean" in a professional setting is maddening!


    Or its corollary, "that word does not mean what you think it means." My organization is notorious for using vague and unhelpful terminology, then wondering why we're constantly talking past each other. It's almost as if we need an organization-to-English dictionary.

    Example: I worked as a member of a small and highly-specialized team that decided to call itself "Technical Services." This one team was part of a larger IT organization filled with many people performing many roles, any one of which could be described as providing some variety of "technical services." So during a reorg, I became a strong advocate of our team adopting a name that was more specific to us and better encapsulated our actual role, and how that differed from other roles. I was well-satisfied by the results - one of which was that we stopped getting disruptive emails from non-technical folks seeking help with problems that had absolutely nothing to do with us.

    Months later, another team that provides similar services on a very different platform gave themselves a name almost identical to ours. So now we get occasional calls from the folks in the operations center for problems with the other team's platforms at 2am.


    Edited by Dude (01/05/18 09:42 AM)

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    #240916 - 01/05/18 04:06 PM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: aquinas]
    MsFriz Offline
    Member

    Registered: 11/22/08
    Posts: 294
    Originally Posted By: aquinas

    I chose management consulting because the larger firms seemingly provided a wide variety of engagements and required a steep learning curve at project outset. To some extent this is true, but systems-based thinkers quickly find the general model in the individual cases, and it's easy to feel like you're part of a white collar sausage factory pumping out the same boilerplate to every client. (Shhh! Trade secret!)


    I totally get this. I've done project management work in many different sectors and industries, and I'm always excited going in, because of the steep learning curve, but I am ultimately applying the same basic tools and techniques regardless of the project, and I tend to master all the new substantive knowledge I can suck out of a job within 6 months to a year, at which point I become restless again and start thinking about the next thing. It's not even a matter of the grass seeming greener on the other side of the hill...it's that I've eaten all the grass and am starving!

    Originally Posted By: aquinas

    I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that we've all banged our heads against the wall of a less competent boss (or boss's boss, etc.) who we had objectively demonstrated we could out-perform early in our careers, but who we had to continue to answer to. It's maddening!


    Uh huh. And "out-perform" is exactly it. Some bosses have been threatened by my ideas, but mainly, they seem threatened by my drive and energy. A lot of people really don't want to work very hard or get much done. In fact, the more they can "coast" the happier they are. I've never figured out how to coast or ride the clock (I go batty, really), and if I'm going to do something I want to do it efficiently and well, with high quality results. I'm ALL IN or not in at all. In my experience, most bosses hate that and see aiming for anything more than passable mediocrity as rocking the boat. So I try to do things just "good enough." It's frustrating, to say the least.

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    #240920 - 01/05/18 08:44 PM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: RRD]
    aeh Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/26/14
    Posts: 2882
    So as, apparently, one of the few -NF-s posting (along with RRD), I may have a somewhat different perspective on stimulating and rewarding work. It's not that I haven't experienced similar situations--yes, I do essentially the same tasks over and over again, and yes, I've had supervisors who required, shall we say, management from below, but I find my vocational stimulation in the uniqueness of the people involved. Granted, there are patterns and repeated profiles that I see among the learners with whom I work (not to mention the colleagues with whom I work), but each child is a different and whole individual, in a unique family system, which is endlessly fascinating to me. I also admit to entertaining myself (and responding to my internal motivations for bettering individual and organizational outcomes) by effecting systemic change through other people, with or without their awareness.

    I've spent time in fields that should have, on paper, been intellectually stimulating in a more conventional sense, but found them to be insufficiently engaging on an emotional and relational level. My current profession provides a better balance. Another advantage of my professional role is that I am the only one of my kind in my building, which allows me to avoid a lot of the "outperformance" conflicts mentioned above. Actually, at this point, despite the myriad federal and state regulations entwined in my work, I am pretty free to do my job however I like, at the pace and intensity that is most compatible with my life needs at that particular moment.

    In addition, I've never expected any one aspect (whether a task or a person) of my life to provide everything necessary. No one can be all things to another person; nor do I want my career to be my sole, or even principal, venue for self-development.

    I should also mention (though I'm pretty sure this audience already knows this!) that parenting is quite a challenging task on many levels.

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    #240924 - 01/06/18 06:34 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: aeh]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 3626
    Originally Posted By: aeh
    So... a challenging task on many levels.
    This post really resonated with me. smile

    I read a bit. smile Some of the books get posted on Bostonian's thread books for adults or elsewhere. Some of the research and/or articles show up as links in various posts. A few things get passed along as a single nugget of wisdom in the thread Quotations that resonate with gifted people.

    Volunteerism can be fulfilling. smile It keeps my eyes open to the realities of a broad range of circumstances and perspectives.

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    #240925 - 01/06/18 06:41 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: Dude]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 3626
    Originally Posted By: Dude
    Quote:
    Ugh, yes! The "what does that word mean" in a professional setting is maddening!


    Or its corollary, "that word does not mean what you think it means." My organization is notorious for using vague and unhelpful terminology, then wondering why we're constantly talking past each other. It's almost as if we need an organization-to-English dictionary.
    Agreed.

    One company, known for ruthless negotiation, had a brief TV commercial spot created. While still in final phase editing, they renegotiated a lower price. This was mentioned jubilantly when they gathered employees together for a perfunctory social occasion victory dinner and screened the ad, whose final line was, "We want to be your penultimate consulting firm!"

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    #240926 - 01/06/18 06:45 AM Re: How are the parents doing? [Re: MsFriz]
    indigo Offline
    Member

    Registered: 04/27/13
    Posts: 3626
    Originally Posted By: MsFriz
    Originally Posted By: aquinas

    I'd bet dollars to doughnuts that we've all banged our heads against the wall of a less competent boss (or boss's boss, etc.) who we had objectively demonstrated we could out-perform early in our careers, but who we had to continue to answer to. It's maddening!


    Uh huh. And "out-perform" is exactly it. Some bosses have been threatened by my ideas, but mainly, they seem threatened by my drive and energy. A lot of people really don't want to work very hard or get much done. In fact, the more they can "coast" the happier they are. I've never figured out how to coast or ride the clock (I go batty, really), and if I'm going to do something I want to do it efficiently and well, with high quality results. I'm ALL IN or not in at all. In my experience, most bosses hate that and see aiming for anything more than passable mediocrity as rocking the boat. So I try to do things just "good enough." It's frustrating, to say the least.
    Yep. smile I found the book The Peter Principle to describe this fairly well.

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