Author: Jessie Mannisto

A divergent thinker who can't abide an echo chamber, Jessie has served as assistant to the Consul General of Japan, Google Policy Fellow, and CIA leadership analyst. She is now an independent writer and analyst.

Reflecting on Ourselves

Dear Readers, Welcome to our September/October 2019 issue!  We’re delighted to feature two returning contributors as well as a new contributor and a new interviewee in this issue. The thread that ties all their stories together is that of reflecting: that essential process through which we come to understand ourselves better, thereby experiencing growth. In Can […]

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A Winding Path to Artisanship

“Starting your own business is a lot of work. It should come as no surprise that ‘entrepreneurship’ is such a long word.” So says Pierre Miller, founder of the Desiderata Pen Company. In this interview, he shares the winding path that led him from his STEM degree to becoming an artisan and a small business owner, and how it required continual work at reintegration.

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Third Factor’s First Anniversary Update

Greetings, loyal readers and new visitors!  The fireworks are not only to celebrate the Fourth of July here in the United States, but also to celebrate the fact that we finally got this issue out.  After all, as some of you may have noticed, the May/June issue has become the July/August issue. Since the editorial […]

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Self-Creation After Chaos

Chaos around her and intensity within her led the teenage Lotte van Lith to an eating disorder. Now, having recovered and reintegrated, she helps gifted people express their intensity with self-compassion—and let loose their incredible creativity in the process.

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From Buds to Blossoms

It’s almost cherry blossom season! In the meantime, our authors offer their own ideas on how to reach one’s own personal peak bloom.

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The Creative Intelligence Agency

The Central Intelligence Agency isn’t the sort of place that draws a lot of self-described “creative spirits.” But according to the 9/11 Commission, their presence is sorely needed. How can the CIA—and other highly convergent, formal bureaucracies—best make use of those employees who feel like square pegs in round holes?

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Connecting to Dabrowski’s Theory

Dear Readers, Happy New Year, and welcome to Issue Five of Third Factor! I’m very sorry for the delay, but I hope it will be worth the wait. Each of the four articles in this issue is about some other topic, but each shows how Kazimierz Dabrowski’s theory of positive disintegration can enrich our understanding of […]

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How to Thrive in Our Dopaminergic Society—and Maybe How to Rescue It

Dopamine is about making the future better than the present. That makes contentment hard for dopaminergic people—which includes those people we call gifted and creative—to find contentment. Is there anything we can do about it? Jessie sat down with the authors of The Molecule of More to get their take.

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Where Intensity and Gender Dysphoria Meet

Why has gender dysphoria become so common among the gifted and intense? In this article, four detransitioned women and two transgender men share their experiences of overexcitability and the roles their intensities played in their individual experiences of gender non-conformity and dysphoria.

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Facing the Question of Non/Conformity

Many pay lip service to nonconformity, but if you’re really unusual, you’ve probably struggled with the implications of deviating from the norm. How should we balance the costs and benefits of our divergence? In this issue’s introductory letter, Third Factor editor in chief Jessie Mannisto links our authors’ takes on this challenge to Eleanor Roosevelt’s writings on how to be an individual.

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