2021 Let's Talk 2e Adult Conference
Find Joy & Meaning In Your Life
Welcome to the 2021 Adults' Conference
We do not outgrow our giftedness or ‘2e-ness.’ Throughout the lifespan gifted and 2e people find themselves compensating for and masking our challenges. The juxtaposition of strengths and struggles chips away at our self confidence.
The Let’s Talk 2e Adult Conference provides highly relevant and relatable sessions addressing:
- Self Awareness
- Social Fulfillment
- Professional Fulfillment
…to help gifted and 2e adults find joy and meaning in their lives.
Join us for this incredibly enlightening experience where our expert speakers focus on the issues and considerations that are on the top of your gifted mind.
Here's what our experts are talking about...
Matt Zakreski, Psy.D.
Falling in Love is Hard on OEs
For many neurodivergent people, dating is a complex and overwhelming subject. This session will attempt to demystify some of the concepts around dating and reframe interpersonal relationships through a lens of overexcitabilities. Dabrowski’s overexcitabilities (OEs) are areas of enhanced receptive and expressive ability in the gifted/twice-exceptional brain. Dr. Zakreski will explore all five overexcitabilities (Imaginational, sensory, psycho-motor, emotional, and intellectual) and give guidance on how to utilize your own OE profile to enhance your relationship.
Matthew Zakreski, PsyD is a high energy, creative clinical psychologist who utilizes an eclectic approach to meet the needs of his neurodiverse clients. He is proud to serve as a consultant, a professor, and a researcher on Giftedness. Dr. Zakreski is a member of Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted and the National Association for Gifted Children, as well as Pennsylvania Association for Gifted Education and the New Jersey Association for Gifted Children. Dr. Zakreski is the co-founder and lead clinician at The Neurodiversity Collective.
Patricia Susan Jackson, M.A., R.C.C.
The Role of Anxiety in the Lives of Gifted Adults: Origins, Manifestations, and Amelioration
Exceptionally bright human beings are infinitely more than the sum of their complex intellects and remarkable talents. Gifted adults have the inborn capacity for extraordinary cognitive, affective, physical and intuitive functioning. They have a core substrate of advanced and accelerated functions within the brain which is enhanced or inhibited by their interface in the environment. Due to their innate differences from the norm, there may be a gross lack of fit and absent or inadequate opportunities for them to develop holistically, without injury. Yet, it is every gifted person’s birthright to live a fully actuated “switched-on” life. We will examine guiding principles, habits, mindset and skills that contribute to a life well-lived for this extraordinary populace. Central to this discussion will be recognizing the complex role of anxiety in their lived experiences. Whenever we explain, mediate perception, or directly guide the gifted adult, we must be mindful of their uncommon core traits and anxiety’s ubiquitous (and often masked) role in their experiences. We will explore fostering creativity, courage, focus, balance, and resilience to help our gifted adults thrive and not just merely survive. Drawing from research in neuroscience, psychology of the gifted, extensive clinical data, and research and conceptualizations from the social sciences, the material presented here is explicitly fine-tuned for gifted adults.
P. Susan Jackson is a leading expert in the gifted, specializing in the Exceptionally and Profoundly Gifted. She is a researcher, author, filmmaker, psychotherapist, consultant and parent. Her clinical work spans 25 years, comprising over 60,000 hours of psychotherapy wholly with this exceptional population. She is the author of numerous articles and chapters in the gifted education literature and consults and speaks worldwide. Her “Integral Practice for the Gifted™” model addresses multiple aspects of human functioning– including cognitive, emotional, spiritual, physical and talent-based dimensions – and explains how advanced cognition influences all of these elements, the Self, and the expression of talent. In 2021, she received the “Mental Health Practitioner of the Year Award” 2021 (conferred by the Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG) Organization). In addition, in 2020, she was chosen as a “Person to Watch” for her exemplary work supporting the Neurodivergent, presented by the international 2-e-Newsletter organization.
Maggie Brown, Ph.D.
2E and Cumulative Relational Trauma
Drop by Drop – Cumulative Relational Trauma and 2E: The often-ignored micro-trauma of multiple relational misperceptions and misattunements can profoundly impact 2E adults. Viewed through a trauma lens, relational ‘misses’ that start in childhood and accumulate over the years, are seen to shape a developing nervous system, and one’s sense of identity. Psychotherapist Dr. Maggie Brown, discusses this often-ignored micro-trauma, the impact on 2E adults, what to look for, and what 2E adults and their allies can do about it. Maggie draws on clinical case examples and research to engage with this important topic. The presentation will be of interest to 2E adults and their allies, including clinicians and families.
Dr. Maggie Brown is an internationally recognized psychotherapist and psychology researcher, working with gifted, multiple-exceptional, creative and ‘otherwise – out- of- the – box” adults, and their allies. With over three decades working with clients from around the globe, Maggie draws from a huge experience-base, offering real-world examples that resonate with audiences. She presents internationally, and is well known for her research and publications. She also identifies as being ‘out – of – the – box’ herself, and (apples not falling far from the tree) has raised a wonderfully unusual son.
Dianne Allen, M.A., CAP, CET
There is More to Loneliness Than You Think
Loneliness is a formidable challenge for gifted and 2e folks. Persistent loneliness can lead to addiction, depression, anxiety and increased fear of living. We will discuss how loneliness creeps into your world and ways to use it in your favor. Loneliness as it pertains to being alone as well as the inner sense of disconnection as a form of loneliness will be discussed. Dianne will also discuss the 3 primary types of connection and how to use them in dealing with loneliness in children, teens and adults. Dianne will present her signature program for relieving loneliness as well as maintaining a solid sense of connection. Case Studies will be presented to illustrate use of the program.
Dianne A. Allen, brings her technically eclectic style in working with gifted and visionary adults, teens, and families. Through her raw experience, education, and decades of serving creative and smart people, Dianne has crafted unique and inspired ways to bring out the best in everyone. Dianne uses her creative genius, intuition in combination with her education to offer unique programs with that special touch. Being an Intuitive Mentor, Dianne uses her gift of intuition as a leading force in her work. She creates custom experiences based on specific requests while being guided by her intuition. Her work is relational and in-depth, seeking to lead with authenticity to create a safe place for each person to attain the transformation goals they most desire. Many of Dianne’s twice exceptional clients are musicians or athletes who have that unique intuitive edge in their craft. Deep listening and hearing what is not being said are a couple of the talents that Dianne brings to each interaction. Many say that Dianne is a great question asker that helps create Aha moments on a regular basis. To learn more, go to www.msdianneallen.com or www.visionsapplied.com
Heather Boorman, MSW, LCSW
Narcissism and the 2e Soul
Intense empathy, imposter syndrome, difficulty finding belonging, and intense self-reflection can all contribute to gifted and 2e souls being more susceptible to narcissistic abuse. This webinar will explore the factors of twice exceptionality that create this vulnerability, how to identify narcissism, and, most importantly, reflect on ways to protect and heal the 2e soul.
Heather Boorman is the founding director of Boorman Counseling in Western Wisconsin. She specializes as a trauma therapist and is an internationally recognized provider, speaker, and advocate for neurodiverse children and adults. Additionally, Heather is the author of The Gifted Kids Workbook and writes & podcasts at The Fringy Bit, to provide REAL support to parents who love a differently wired child.
Linda Roggli, PCC
Free to Be ADHD (and 2e)
Owning an ADHD brain has its challenges — time blindness, trouble with initiation and completion, impatience, impulsivity. And they are magnified with the ‘gift’ of 2e at work and home (“If you’re so smart, why can’t you keep a job?” With strong heritability, it also impacts parenting (“I’m sorry I forgot to pick you up after school! ”) The paradox of high intelligence coupled with high distractibility is difficult to explain, even to ourselves. But many ADHD adults, especially those diagnosed in later life, admit they have managed their lives by out-thinking everyone else in the room. There is a high price for this hyper-vigilance — anxiety, exhaustion and eventual burnout. Understanding the complex interaction between ADHD, executive function and giftedness is the first step toward creating a life that is authentic and richly rewarding. Join us for this fascinating exploration of ADHD 2e.
Linda Roggli is a Professional Certified Coach (PCC), award-winning author and founder of the A-D-Diva Network for ADHD women 40-and-better. She is an internationally-recognized expert in midlife and senior ADHD. She co-founded the annual ADHD Women’s and ADHD Parents’ Palooza, two weeks of online conversation with 30+ ADHD experts. (adhdpalooza.com) She also created the popular ADHD Get Organized program which features live organizing sessions. Linda’s book Confessions of an ADDiva- midlife in the non-linear lane won first prize for women’s issues in the prestigious Next Generation Indy Book Awards competition. She chairs the webinar committee for ADDA. She lives in Durham, NC with her slightly OCD husband, one OCD cat, four adorable ADHD Shelties and 15 cackling hens.
Julie Skolnick, M.A., J.D.
2e Adulting: What Makes You Tick and What Ticks You Off
We do not outgrow our “2e-ness” and often 2e adults spend lifetimes trying to “fit in.” The first step to appreciating and living your authentic life is by recognizing your strengths and your struggles. What makes you tick? What ticks you off? In this session we will consider what’s important to 2e adults; connections, professions, altruistic considerations and what’s challenging; toxic environments, unhealthy relationships, different learning needs. We’ll consider fulfillment through the balanced lenses of how we as 2e adults affect the world around us and how the world around us affects our abilities to be our best selves.
Julie Skolnick, M.A., J.D., Founder of With Understanding Comes Calm, LLC, passionately guides parents of gifted and distractible children, mentors 2e adults, trains educators and advises professionals on how to bring out the best and raise self-confidence in their 2e students and clients. Julie serves as Secretary to the Maryland Superintendent’s Gifted and Talented Advisory Council, is an advisor for the Masters of Education Program for the Bridges Graduate School of Cognitive Diversity, is the Maryland liaison for Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted (SENG), is a Committee member for the National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) and serves as an advisor to “The G Word” feature documentary currently in production. Julie produces Let’s Talk 2e! virtual conferences, hosts the Let’s Talk 2e! Parent Empowerment Series, maintains the free listing service, 2eResources.com, and publishes “Gifted & Distractible,” a free monthly newsletter. A frequent speaker and prolific writer, Julie is also the mother of three twice exceptional children who keep her on her toes and uproariously laughing.
Seth Perler, M.Ed.
Executive Function and Quality of Life
We all want to be happy, healthy and successful, however we define those things. But for 2e adults with Executive Function challenges, it’s important to understand that EF is literally a “quality of life issue”. This session will help you understand the “quality of life” frame in a meaningful way so you can feel empowered when you’re trying to get important things done. It will give you insights and strategies for your strengths and struggles, you can apply right away.
Seth Perler is a well-known Executive Function Coach, educator, vlogger, and guy who cares about seeing outside-the-box kids succeed. This means that he helps struggling, neurodiverse learners turn it around in a baffling system so they can launch a successful future. His weekly blog, SethPerler.com gives parents and teachers game-changing answers in a sea of misguided educational fluff. Seth also runs TEFOS, The Executive Function Online Summit.
Scott Barry Kaufman, Ph.D.
The New Hierarchy of Needs and 2e
Over 70 years ago, Abraham Maslow put forward an integrated theory of human motivation that still captures the public imagination. In this talk, I will present a revised hierarchy of needs that is supported by recent research, and incorporates Maslow’s writings on the importance of self-transcendence, which preoccupied him the last few years of his life. I will tie my revised hierarchy of needs to the basic needs that are important for 2e adults to gain agency and momentum toward living a more self-actualized life.
Scott Barry Kaufman is a cognitive scientist and humanistic psychologist. He is the founder and director of the Center for the Science of Human Potential, and the author of several books, including Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization. He is also host of The Psychology Podcast, the most popular psychology podcast in the world.
Femke Hovinga, M.A.
Burn-out or bore-out? Gifted / 2E and finding joy and fulfillment at work
During this session we will dive into gifted at work. What is it that brings joy and fulfillment? Is this different for gifted / 2E individuals than it is in the rest of the working population? Departing from a theoretical framework about person-environment fit, giftedness and burn-out, the knowledge about these topics will be connected. From there you will learn more about you: your strengths and challenges, your path to joy and fulfillment at work.
Femke Hovinga is a gifted expert and social entrepreneur from Zeist, The Netherlands. She is pursuing her PhD in Strategic HRM, with her research focused on giftedness at work. Besides this, Femke is the founder of several organizations with a focus on GT / 2E people. Talentissimo, a platform for 145+ IQ, SCALIQ, developer of psychometrical instruments such as IQ tests and InterIQ, recruitment for gifted/2E individuals.
Sarah Wayland, Ph.D.
Autistic people have ways of thinking and being that can feel unfamiliar to non-autistic people. Indeed, the word “autistic” may lead some people to consider only what is difficult for the person described as such. It’s important to remember that being autistic also confers many strengths. In this presentation, Sarah Wayland will describe eight areas in which autistics can be gifted, including (a) sensation, (b) cognition, (c) intense interests, (d) emotions, (e) consistency, (f) social communication, (g) humor, and (h) grit. Many of these strengths are a direct consequence of the way autistic people are wired.
Sarah Wayland, Ph.D. founded her company, Guiding Exceptional Parents, to help parents learn how to confidently and effectively help their children with ADHD, autism, learning disabilities, and other brain-based differences at home, at school, and in the community. In addition to hosting trainings, lecturing, and working with individual clients, Sarah is co-founder, with Penny Williams, of The Behavior Revolution an online platform for parents to get guidance for supporting their differently wired kids. She learned a lot of what she knows from her best teachers – her two exceptional children.
Colin Seale, J.D.
Gifted at 7, ADHD at 37: My Story and the Adult Costs and Benefits of Twice Exceptionality
No child is defective, but after a lifetime of struggling with fixable challenges, adults with ADHD must own that our successes are “because, not despite” our divergent thinking. Join Colin Seale, education advocate, Founder and CEO of thinkLaw, and author of Thinking Like a Lawyer: A Practical Framework for Teaching Critical Thinking to All Students, for powerful but practical strategies to reframe this narrative.
Colin Seale was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, where his struggles gave birth to his passion for educational equity. Using his experience as a math teacher, later an attorney, and now a keynote speaker, contributor to Forbes and The 74, and author of Thinking Like a Lawyer: A Framework for Teaching Critical Thinking to All Students, Colin founded thinkLaw, an award-winning organization that helps educators close the critical thinking gap through powerful, practical instructional strategies and curricular resources.
Jessica Hasson, Ph.D.
The Benefits of Psychological Testing with 2E Adults
Psychological testing is often used with 2e children and adolescents to identify areas for enrichment and areas for accommodation in school. However, it is an underutilized tool with 2e adults. Psychological testing is not solely for academic purposes; it can provide insight into one’s strengths and differences that can assist with advocacy at work and in one’s personal life as well. This presentation will discuss the psychological testing process for 2e adults, including times where testing could be beneficial and what to expect from testing. A focus will be on how to use the results of testing to advocate in one’s career and in one’s personal life from a neurodiversity-affirming perspective.
Dr. Hasson received her doctoral degree in clinical psychology from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. She is a licensed psychologist in Maryland, Virginia, and Washington DC and has evaluated 2e children, adolescents, and adults across the United States. Prior to joining Quince Orchard Psychotherapy as the Assessment Director, Dr. Hasson was a core faculty member in the doctoral program at the American School of Professional Psychology, where she taught doctoral level courses on psychological assessment. Dr. Hasson is also a published author. She has presented over 50 times at state, national, and international psychology conferences and has published book chapters and peer-reviewed journal articles on assessment. She is the author of the book, Essentials of Rorschach Assessment: Comprehensive System and R-PAS.
2e and me: A journey of self-discovery
Why is it important for gifted and 2e adults to discover that they are neurodivergent? How does an assessment and potential diagnosis change someone’s life for the better? I will share my own personal journey on the topics of giftedness, twice-exceptionalities, ADHD and overexcitabilities and how it helped me to understand myself better and how it improved my relationships with my surroundings.
I am a Multipotentialite with a great passion for Science and the Marie Kondo Method. Learning new things and talking to people is what I love. Recently, I stumbled across the topic of unidentified gifted and 2e adults and it changed everything! I strongly believe it is time we talk about this topic in order to raise awareness. This is why I created a podcast called Unleash Monday where I talk with my guests about what it means to be a neurodivergent adult.
PJ Sedillo, Ph.D.
Thrice Exceptional (3E): Individuals who are Gifted, 2E, and GLBTQ
The term twice exceptional, often abbreviated as 2e, entered educators’ lexicons in mid-1990s and refers to gifted individuals who have some form of disability. These students are considered exceptional both because of their giftedness and because of their special needs. The term “thrice exceptional” (3e) is terminology created for this presentation which refers to someone who is gifted, disabled, and is either GLBTQ+ (Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, plus). The objective of this presentation is for counselors/therapists, educators, adults who are 3e, or those who might know someone who is Thrice Exceptional have the opportunity to understand the who, what, and how. The intent and final goal is to be able to identify, understand, and provide support for this unique segment of our population.
Dr. PJ “Paul James” Sedillo an Associate Professor for the Special/Gifted Education Department at New Mexico Highlands University is published in Gifted Child Today, Journal of Education & Social Policy, Prufrock Press, Parents of High Potential, and ABQ Press where his book Solidarity through Pride won best book in Arizona/New Mexico for 2018. PJ has a new chapter coming out in Prufrock Press titled Identifying and Serving Diverse Gifted Learners: Meeting the Needs of Special Populations in Gifted Education which introduces Stages of Identity for GLBT-Gifted persons. He served as President for the NM Association for the Gifted, Communication Member & Chair-Elect for the NAGC-GLBTQ Network, NAGC State Affiliate Leadership and Advocacy member, Co-Chair for the 2019 NAGC Conference in Albuquerque, and currently is an At-Large Board Member for NAGC.
Michele Kane, Ed.D.
The Lifelong Journey of 2E Adults: Joys and Challenges of the Aging Process
You don’t outgrow your giftedness! Across the lifespan, the same intensities, sensitivities, and complexities continue to surface in various ways depending on the developmental stages as they emerge. This presentation will review some of the common experiences for 2E adults as they progress through the years and highlight many of the challenges that are likely to occur when life changes. We know that maintaining a strengths-based attitude is critical to weathering the vicissitudes of life. Well-being is a skill that can be learned. This session will share with participants some specific coping practices combined with practical suggestions to develop inner awareness and to meet the affective needs regardless of the adult stage of development. Additionally, resources for maintaining equanimity during times of crisis and overwhelm will be provided.
Michele Kane, Ed.D., is Professor Emerita in Special Education from Northeastern Illinois University, where she coordinated the Master of Arts in Gifted Education program for over a decade. Beginning her career as a parent, Michele has additionally served the gifted community as an educator, leader, author, and counselor. A frequent presenter at state, national, and international conferences, Michele has numerous articles in print and chapters in Living with Intensity, Off the Charts, and Accelerating and Extending Literacy for Diverse Students. Additionally, she co-authored, with Dorothy Sisk, Planting Seeds of Mindfulness. She has been a passionate advocate for enhancing well-being for gifted people across the lifespan for more than forty years.