10 March 2009

Late-blooming genius

This article should give us all hope. Haven't quite fulfilled your potential yet? No worries, you have time. It isn't your usual "Lincoln was nothing before age 40" or "Einstein learned to ride a bike at age 60" (though those are also true and inspiring).

Scott Barry Kaufman examines traditional notions of IQ and explains how more complex abilities (say, creativity or leadership) often take years to mature. How mature brains process and access information differently from younger brains. And he looks at how learning disabilities (like dyslexia) and huge emotional setbacks (losing a parent before age 21) have often turned out to be assets, producing scores of successful entrepreneurs and artists.

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