135: Using Your Intensity to Create Your Best Life with Christine Fonseca

Being gifted or intense means different things to different people. Today’s show focuses on many things we can do to make the world a better place for everyone. We’re talking about living our best lives in authentic ways, the natural state of flexible emotions, recognizing the strengths in others, and appreciating the neurological diversity in people.

Christine Fonseca is a licensed educational psychologist, critically-acclaimed author, and nationally-recognized speaker on topics related to educational psychology, mental health, giftedness, and using storytelling to heal past wounds. Using her experience consulting and coaching educators and parents, Christine brings her expertise to Psychology Today, authoring the parenting blog, Parenting for a New Generation. She has written self-help articles for Parents.com, Johnson & Johnson, and Justine magazine. Her appearance on the popular gifted education podcast, Mind Matters, was one of the most downloaded episodes. Christine uses her fictional stories to explore the more complex aspects of humanity through sweeping romances, Gothic thrillers, and psychological horror stories. As a trauma-impacted survivor, Christine believes in the power of storytelling as a key to healing past wounds. She delivers soul-centered writing workshops to help writers get in touch with their authentic voice and bring that to both fiction and nonfiction writing. Christine’s critically-acclaimed titles include Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students, Raising the Shy Child, Letting Go, The Girls’ Guide to Breaking Free of Stress and Anxiety, and an action-packed young adult series, The Solomon Experiments. Christine lives in southern CA with her husband and children.

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Show Highlights:

  • Why Christine calls herself a “super-intense human,” and how she displays her passion for helping people figure out who they are so they can live authentically and unapologetically

  • Why Christine loves to help gifted people because they are often misunderstood

  • How Christine feels things and thinks about things deeply, and why she analyzes everything

  • How she was misunderstood as she grew up, not socializing well with peers

  • How she reacted viscerally as a child to the sheer audacity of slavery and why she felt the need to apologize for the atrocities of the entire race of white people

  • How she had to tone herself down in high school, being intensely shy and “extra” at the same time

  • How she had to come clean with herself about her past trauma and who she really was

  • Why she chose to focus on and nurture her children’s EQ--not their IQ

  • Why her intensity gets out of control with weight and body image issues

  • Why she gives herself permission to be who she needs to be with her emotions in the moment, no matter what that looks like

  • How Christine is dedicated to intense people and helping them feel “normal”

  • How she learned her daily non-negotiables: contemplative practice, journaling, healthy food, movement, time with family, and creativity

  • Why we should appreciate how neurologically diverse all people are

  • Why Christine has started strengths-spotting

  • The best advice from Christine’s mother: “The only definition anything has is the definition you’ve given it.”

  • Books Christine loves: The Chronicles of Narnia, Watership Down, Shakespeare, and other nonfiction books on religion

  • How Christine differs from a lot of researchers on the topic of giftedness

  • The difference in experiencing anxious feelings and “having an anxiety attack”

  • The natural state of being flexible in and out of the range of human emotions

  • Why we need to change our tolerance levels

  • The danger of “toxic positivity”

  • How Christine helps others through her coaching, online courses, live events, speaking engagements, and books

  • “A gifted or intense person paints the world in bold colors while everyone else paints in pastels.”

  • Christine’s new book, why she wrote it, and how she researched the content


Christine Fonseca

Find Christine’s articles on Psychology Today

Find Christine’s Facebook group: IntenseLife Community

Mindfulness and Character Strengths by Ryan Niemiec

Christine’s Nonfiction Books:

The Caring Child: Raising Empathetic and Emotionally Intelligent Children

Emotional Intensity in Gifted Students

Quiet Kids

101 Success Secrets for Gifted Kids

I’m Not Just Gifted

Shy Child

Letting Go: A Girl’s Guide to Breaking FREE of Stress and Anxiety

Healing the Heart

Survey Link

I love watching the gifts and unique abilities that artists bring to the world. ~ Christine Fonseca
Using Your Intensity to Create Your Best Life with Christine Fonseca
It’s not my job to make other people comfortable, but to be a fully self-actualized human being and become comfortable with myself. ~ Christine Fonseca