Six Positive Characteristics of Dyslexia

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Six Positive Characteristics of Dyslexia

 

People with dyslexia struggle with reading, writing, and mental math because of the way their brains are wired. But that same wiring gives them benefits.

Research has shown that dyslexics shine in many ways. They tend to be exceptional at seeing the big picture, creative problem-solving, and managing people and resources.

Businesses can benefit from boosting their neuro-diversity by including dyslexics in their workforce. 

As mega-successful dyslexic entrepreneur Richard Branson put it in a tweet: 

"Dyslexic people hold a unique set of skills that will be really important to the future of business
– the ability to think flexibly, creatively, and solve really complex problems."

6 Dyslexia Strengths or "Supperpowers"

While I was working on the graphics for this post, I spelt "superpower" wrong. When I finally noticed it was wrong, I decided it was very appropriate to leave it that way since we're talking about people and brains that find spelling difficult. 

The dyslexics' 6 supperpowers:

  1. Imagining
  2. Visualizing
  3. Communicating
  4. Reasoning
  5. Connecting
  6. Exploring

Dyslexia Supperpower #1: Imagining

Dyslexics see things differently. They tend to be creatives. They don't have to be pushed to think outside the box. Thinking outside the box is their automatic setting. 

“I performed poorly at school – when I attended, that is – and was perceived as stupid because of my dyslexia. I still have trouble reading.”
Tommy Hilfiger, Men's Clothing Designer 

 

"If a child is dyslexic, can he be a good writer?
That’s a good question, because many people confuse difficulties in reading and the ability to write.
In fact, some of the most accomplished writers that we know happen to be dyslexic.
For example, John Irving, he won an Academy Award for the Cider House Rules, is dyslexic.
Stephen J. Cannell, who wrote the television series the A-Team and the Rockford Files, is also dyslexic.
He always likes to make people understand that dyslexia affects your ability to read and to spell, but not to have an imagination and be creative."
- Donna Ricks interview of Sally Shawitz for First Voice.
September 1, 2004

 The benefits of being dyslexic, Dyslexic Superpower #1

 

This supperpower put into action: 

 

The benefits of being dyslexic, Dyslexic Superpower #1

 

 

Dyslexia Supperpower #2: Visualizing

Dyslexics' tendency toward visualization strength is another of their superpowers that makes them creative not only in the arts and sports but in all endeavors that benefit from flexible thinking. 

The dyslexic brain tends to see the whole picture. 

“It’s as if people with dyslexia tend to use a wide-angle lens to take in the world,
while others tend to use a telephoto,
each is best at revealing different kinds of detail.”
--Matthew H. Schneps, Harvard University

Their power to visualize also makes dyslexic people exceptional at spatial reasoning, detecting patterns, and noticing when things are out of place. British mathematician Alan Turing, who broke Nazi Germany's secret code, was dyslexic.  

“I recognized that I had dyslexia and then I realized I had this gift for imaging. I live in a world of patterns and images, and I see things that no one else sees. Because of dyslexia, I can see these patterns.”

“You can’t overcome it (dyslexia); you can work around it and make it work for you, but it never goes away. That’s probably a good thing, because if dyslexia went away, then the other gifts would go away too.”

--Beryl Benacerraf, M.D.
World-renowned radiologist and expert in ultrasound

 
neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

This supperpower put into action:

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

 

Dyslexia Supperpower #3: Communicating

While spelling and reading aren't in the dyslexics wheelhouse, they tend to excel at verbal communication and breaking ideas down to help others understand complex concepts. 

One of our greatest storytellers, Steven Spielberg, is dyslexic:

“I was unable to read for at least two years — I was two years behind the rest of my class. And, of course, I went through what everybody goes through — teasing… The teasing led to a lot of other problems I was having in school, but it all stemmed from the fact that I was embarrassed to stand up in front of the class and read.”

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

 This supperpower put into action:

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

 Dyslexia Supperpower #4: Reasoning

While dyslexics usually struggle to write an essay or pass a written test, they tend to be great at learning in non-written ways, understanding concepts, and solving problems.

Among famous dyslexic scientists are Stephen Hawking, Alexander Graham Bell, Thomas Edison, and Carol W. Greider (an American molecular biologist who received the Noble Prize in 2009 for discoveries about chromosomes.)

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

 This supperpower put into action:

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

 

Dyslexia Supperpower #5: Connecting

Dyslexics tend to have great people skills. This may in part be a result of the difficulties they endured trying to survive their school years when they lived in constant fear of being asked to read out loud and where self-worth is heavily tied to how well you can pass a written test. 

American presidents John Kennedy and George Washington were dyslexic, as is TV host Jay Leno. 

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia 

 

  This supperpower put into action:

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

Dyslexia Supperpower #6: Exploring

Dyslexic people tend to be curious passionate seekers of information and understanding of how things work. 

In many ways this supperpower drives the others and gives them a megaboost. 

 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

  This supperpower put into action: 

neurodiversity, dyslexic, dyslexia benefits strengths, characteristics of dyslexia

 

Many people with dyslexia deal with stress and anxiety because of the challenges of struggling with school. 

Check out my products for helping with anxiety and emotional detox:

 

A quick look at Anxiety: Simple Powerful Anti-Anxiety Tips for Stress, Anxiety, and Panic Attack Relief

 

Release and Refresh Emotional Detox Hypnosis  

 

 

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  • Ann Silvers
Comments 4
  • Ann M Silvers
    Ann M Silvers

    Hi Christopher. Thanks for sharing your story. I’m sure that it will resonate with others who have been traumatized by hits to their self-esteem and self-confidence because of their dyslexia.

  • Christopher Sims
    Christopher Sims

    WOW. As a dyslexic adult, I actually never knew what dyslexia was. I was just informed my reading and writing were terrible, and I was dyslexic… That was the end of the topic, and I was just thrown into remedial classes at school. I left school, struggled a lot, but soon made a very successful life in the creative arts sector. However all my life I have struggled with emotion issues, anxiety, depression and crisis mode. So much so I had a nervous break down 5 years ago, and I had to take therapy, and rebuild my life. This was an extremely positive if not very difficult period. But I rebuilt my life, retained the successes I had achieved, and built further on what has positive in my life, and let go of the negatives. However in recent months I have struggled with confusion, anxiety, self esteem, and could not understand why? I constantly kept saying to my self, “why am I still felling the things that I actually addressed and sorted out. My life is good?” My child hood and adolescence were fraught with emotion and mental health issues caused by a difficult child hood, abandonment issues, an alcoholic mother, and a total lack of security which carried on from birth untill my mid 40s and entering therapy. And yet these issues creeped up again in the last 4 months during a major and positive change of life. It was only at this point that it dawned on me that dyslexia possible was not just about reading and writing bad, but it could be more of an emotional issues. And after a 24 hour journey where I was in complete confusion, I googled dyslexia, and this statement below opened up a whole new world to me, and why I have suffered for all my life with emotional issues. I ask the question: why my therapist did not even mention my dyslexia is part of emotional issues, or why there was not one person in my life who opened up the potential to dyslexia and any reasoning to my emotional and mental health problems? Fortunately I have today arrived, at a new door that has opened, allowing me to accept and understand so many problems I just could not “get my head around” and was in complete confusion with where my life was???
    The statement that unlocked the barrier thats been a struggle all my life:

    “How can dyslexia affect emotions?
    Dyslexic children (and adults) respond to confusion by becoming disoriented. The feelings of uncertainty and the mistakes they make while disoriented cause emotional reactions such as anxiety, embarrassment, or frustration. These emotions in turn provoke continued or increasing levels of disorientation”

    I can now actual begin to build on a new and positive life I feel, with the understanding that dyslexia is not just about reading and writing, but it is about emotions you have had to deal with all your life. Blessed to be dyslexic – its a gift I wish I had been aware of a lot earlier in life.
    Chris

  • Ann Silvers
    Ann Silvers

    Hi Dawnelle. Yes. I do mean superpower. As I said in the blog post: "While I was working on the graphics for this post, I spelt “superpower” wrong. When I finally noticed it was wrong, I decided it was very appropriate to leave it that way since we’re talking about people and brains that find spelling difficult."

  • Dawnelle Wynia
    Dawnelle Wynia

    Do you mean SUPERpower or SUPPERpower (supper is a synonym for dinner)?

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