This post resonates with me SO. MUCH.
I’ve often labelled myself as “stupid” because there have been times when there was a mismatch between my academic and intellectual ability, and my ability to “apply myself”.
Situations which puzzled me – why couldn’t I “just bloody well get on with it”?
And other situations where I was required to document “progress” towards something, which seemed pointless to me, as I’d got to the end point without having to practise or plan beforehand (I put together my entire GCSE Art portfolio, making “connections” between all the individual pieces, AFTER I’d actually produced all the artwork – listen, the art just came to me, alright?).
And situations when I come across as horribly bad-tempered and rude because I find interruptions and task-switching so damned difficult.
This post explains things so well.
“You’re so smart; why can’t you do this or that?”
“You could have gotten an A, if only you’d done your daily work/homework.”
“I know you’re capable.”
“You can do better.”
“You’re better than that.”
Uh, thanks? But when people said these things, I still felt greasy and heavy inside.
Because those statements aren’t actually compliments at all. The source-person of the comments might intend them to be, but they’re not.
That’s why I felt a little “off” about saying Thank You. In fact, I just stared, making agonizingly uncomfortable eye contact, trying not to look “guilty” but failing, because I know that somewhere, somehow, despite my most concentrated efforts, I had screwed up. So as the seconds slowed to a syrupy crawl, I would pull all of my internal willpower together to maintain my composure, the best I could muster being that uncontrollable sheepish guilty look, the only expression…
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