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The Problem

Do you ever wonder why you can see clearly a solution to a situation that no-one else seems to be able to perceive?  Are you bored at college or university, find the lessons dull and uninspiring yet love learning about the things you are interested in on your own time?  Perhaps you are at a loss as to why others don't join the dots in a way that seems obvious to you?  Do you scratch your head at what everyone else thinks you should do when there's little reason to follow that path, as a better one would bring better results?  Do you ever feel vaguely different from those around you and generally misunderstood by others, despite their (and your) best efforts?  Have you ever thought that you might have a higher-than-average level of general intelligence?

Do you see things before others do?  Is your take often unique?

Perhaps you feel that you don’t ‘fit’ as well as you’d like?

Read on for thoughts on living with a higher-than-average level of intelligence

Just over two thirds (68%) of the global population would score between 85 and 115 points on a standardised intelligence IQ test (with a standard deviation of 15).  If someone has an IQ measured at 70 points or less, they might be considered to have an intellectual deficiency, as they would fall within the lowest 2% of test-takers in terms of intelligence.  If a person scores 130 points or above, however, they would have different challenges as they would be within the top 2% of the world's population, intelligence-wise.

If you can relate to some of what is written above, the information on this web page may help you to recognise the difficulty you face, the benefits of addressing it and how you might go about doing that …

Do you struggle sometimes to relate to others?  Would you like to be able to understand yourself more?  Perhaps you’ve tried therapy in the past, but it didn’t work out?  There are benefits to ensuring a good fit between you and your counsellor

The Benefits of Recognising the Problem and of Taking Steps to Address It

It's understandable that people need to 'find their tribe' in life, to know where they 'fit' and to connect with like-minded individuals who they don't have to explain themselves to.  As the slice of the population with a high IQ is so small, knowing that you are not alone in facing the challenges associated with being different in this way can be reassuring, validating and empowering.  Others will share your challenges, passions and perspectives, and will have the ability to challenge, stimulate and engage with you.

Those with a very high intelligence quotient (IQ) belong to a small group, and many high IQ people find that very little in society 'fits' for them.  They are often not the target audience in any given situation, as most things are targeted at most people.  If a product or service is designed for market, then it makes economic sense that it will be targeted and developed for the 'average' consumer, as this will ensure the best fit and broadest appeal.  If we find ourselves, for whatever reason, not in the target range, this can present us with difficulties.  The fact that you are reading this web page indicates that you might have an interest in seeking out assistance to help you with a particular challenge in your life.  You might have found it difficult to find such assistance that is suitable.

Academics and experts broadly agree that there is no way to significantly alter your IQ, no matter how hard you study (or how hard you try to ignore or deny your gifts).  We are born with our intellectual ability, and must endeavour to make the most of what we've been given, wherever we are on the scale.  In my experience working with high IQ clients at Ashwood Therapy, this often means them coming to terms with being different to 98% of the people they grew up with, go to work with and meet on dating websites.  If you're reading this web page because you have the gift of extraordinary intelligence, the chances are that you may at some stage have questioned whether it is a 'gift' at all.  To be set apart from the vast majority of your peers, co-workers or potential life partners can pose unique problems that, quite simply, are not catered for by regular services or regular sources of help.

Coming to understand why you are different from most people in some ways can be freeing, and can bring an end to having to try hard to be someone or something that you're not.  Embracing your skills and rare take on life can be liberating.  Appreciating that in order to get along with the other 98% of the population you might have to make a few wise changes to your approach can lead to increased satisfaction in your personal relationships, less aggravation with work colleagues and greater involvement in what's going on.  Instead of being led by your IQ, you can lead your extraordinary intelligence and harness it for your own benefit and for the benefit of those you care about.

Have You Tried Counselling Before, Only To Be Disappointed?

You might have tried therapy in the past, but have found that your counsellor didn't 'get' where you were coming from or simply didn't understand the predicament in which you find yourself.  You might not have been seeking support with your intellectual difference, but this difference might have stood in the way of your therapist appreciating why you perceive things differently to their regular clients.  Even if the issue you are struggling with is a common one unrelated to your high IQ, the fact that you have higher-than-average intelligence will mean that you will experience that difficulty in a different way to many people.  This is the experience of many of the clients that approach Ashwood Therapy.  Some report that they have “played games” with their therapist due to their differing intellectual ability.  Others have found little understanding and compassion on the part of their counsellor, who couldn't see that there are downsides to being 'gifted' (which is perhaps an unfortunate and sometimes inaccurate word, but nonetheless one which exists to describe those with unusually high intelligence).  Jealousy, envy or defensiveness on the part of the counsellor might get in the way of you frankly explaining what's bothering you.  Still others have found that despite the best efforts of their well-intentioned therapist, because of the differences between them the all-important therapeutic connection was tough if not impossible to establish.

It is widely agreed that the most important factor in determining the success of counselling is the quality of the therapeutic relationship between client and counsellor.  Therapeutic attunement, the ability of the therapist to accurately perceive and empathise with the client's experiencing and a basic ability to relate to one another in an open manner are all essential if the client is going to be aided by the therapeutic process.  While it is certainly not impossible, perhaps you can see how it might be difficult for those conditions to be met if there is too wide a gulf between client and counsellor when it comes to intellectual ability?  Bertrand Russell, writing in A History of Western Philosophy makes the point that a less intelligent person will not be able to fully appreciate what a more intelligent person explains as the former will “unconsciously translate what he hears into something he can understand” (Russell, 1945, p.83).  The danger for the therapeutic relationship is of course that the therapist may not accurately perceive the client’s experiencing if they unconsciously liken it to their own without factoring in the high IQ element.

Rob has a high IQ himself - he has taken recognised IQ tests and has attained a score within the top 2% of the general population.  He therefore appreciates at first-hand some of the unique benefits and drawbacks of being highly intelligent.  He will endeavour to appreciate your unique experience of the world by carefully listening to what you're going through or have been through, and crucially will have the capacity to understand how being different to others, IQ-wise, can be testing as well as rewarding.

Many of the clients who approach Ashwood Therapy do so having been frustrated with their other forays into the world of therapy.  Rob has had the privilege of being able to utilise his training and over 10 years of clinical experience to enable many high IQ clients to feel 'heard' when in the past there has been a lack of understanding on the part of the therapist.  Rob sees the world as a high IQ individual himself, and so the world you describe in session may not be as alien to him as it can be to someone who isn’t themselves considered gifted and talented.

High IQ Counselling Specifically for Gifted and Talented People

At Ashwood Therapy | Online Counselling, Rob specialises in assisting clients who have unusually high intelligence, who have discovered that they fall into the gifted and talented bracket, or suspect that they might.  He has worked with many clients over the years who have sought assistance either with the very fact that they are high IQ individuals, or with low mood, problem worrying, work-life balance challenges, relationship difficulties or complex bereavement which have all been experienced with the added complication of being extremely intelligent.  Rob practises the person-centred style of therapy, a therapeutic approach which aims to foster an empathetic, non-judgemental and respectful relationship between client and counsellor in order to activate the client’s inner resources and promote personal growth and self-healing.  Over time, he works with clients to explore where they find themselves, where they’d like to be, and how they’re going to get there.

Getting help to understand how to make the best of your gifts can make all the difference

If you are wanting to explore your situation as a high IQ individual and would like to know more about how the online counselling service offered at Ashwood Therapy could assist you in making changes, you could book a free, no obligation initial consultation by video call or instant messaging (text) chat to talk things over with Rob.  It could be the first step towards making sure your gifts and talents work for you!

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You might be disillusioned with the counselling you've received in the past.  The good news is, connecting with a therapist who gets where you're coming from may allow you to find the understanding that has been lacking previously.  Below we look at the value of specialist high IQ counselling …

Living with a high IQ: If you’d like to explore what having high intelligence means for you, where can you go for assistance?  Read on below to discover that support is available, and that it is possible to find counselling that’s a good fit for you

Where do I get the therapeutic support that I need?

Not so many years ago, attending therapy would mean travelling to a therapist’s office, perhaps some distance from home, and physically spending an hour or so in the company of the counsellor.  If you wanted to access support from a specialist in a particular field, this would mean a longer journey (or at the very least a long-distance telephone call).  Nowadays, thanks to the Internet and advances in technology, it’s possible to attend online counselling with the most appropriate person for the situation at hand remotely and without the need to leave your home or other responsibilities.  Encrypted video call therapy, instant messaging (text) chat counselling and secure email therapy are discreet and convenient, and most importantly can bring together geographically dispersed people who might otherwise never have been able to meet.  Rob is U.K.-based and offers a free, no obligation initial consultation so that you can try out what it's like to connect with him as an online therapist.  He currently works with individual clients over the age of 18 years, not couples, families or clients under 18.  Counselling service availability outside of the U.K. will depend upon your specific location and the legal / regulatory frameworks which exist in your country / territory.  Ashwood Therapy does not currently provide counselling services to clients located in the U.S.A. or Canada.