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15 Successful People with Autism Who Have Inspired Millions of People

15 Successful People with Autism Who Have Inspired Millions of People

There are those who merely roll over and accept whatever hand fate deals them as the perfect excuse to settle for mediocrity.

Then, there are the other type of people:

The inspirational figures.

The highly successful leaders, innovators and creators.

The heroes who take what other people would see as a limitation and turn it into their superpower, using it to change the world, bring joy to the lives of others and inspire millions of people.

Nowhere will you find a more classic example of these superheroes than among those influential people diagnosed with (or at least showing classic symptoms of) autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Affecting an estimated 1.5 million people in the United States and around 700,000 in the UK, ASD is a term which covers a number of unique conditions, ranging from Aspergers Syndrome to Autistic Disorder or ‘classic autism’, the latter being the typical condition that most people think of when they hear the word ‘autism.’

In between, there are those with Pervasive Developmental Disorder – Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS) or ‘atypical autism,’ which is the term typically used to describe individuals who show some signs of being on the autistic spectrum yet don’t meet the full criteria for a diagnosis of Aspergers or Autistic Disorder.

People with autism can face any number of different challenges in life, including, but by no means limited to:

  • Difficulty in communicating with others
  • Troubles maintaining friendships
  • Obsessive interests
  • Repetitive body movements such as hand flapping or rocking back and forth
  • Delayed speech and language skills.

Still, whatever challenges ASD may have presented the individuals we’re going to meet today, these aren’t the kind of people to let those challenges get in the way of achieving their dreams.

Ready to be inspired?

Let’s dive in and meet the business leaders, intellectuals, artists and other highly successful people with autism who have inspired millions of people.

1. Dr. Temple Grandin

    Professor of Animal Science / Influential autism spokesperson

    No list of inspiring people with autism could truly begin without first mentioning Temple Grandin.

    Mute until the age of three-and-a-half, Dr. Grandin was diagnosed with autism as a young child and was eventually able to speak thanks to the help of a speech therapist.

    Finding her voice, she went on to publish Emergence: Labeled Autistic, a ground-breaking book which is widely regarded as the first real insight into the life and thoughts of someone with autism.

    A prolific writer and speaker not only on the subject of autism but also on animal behaviour, Dr. Grandin is a Professor of Animal Science at Colorado University, where she has been called “the most accomplished and well-known adult with autism in the world.”

    In 2010, Time Magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world and she was also the subject of a biographical movie starring Emmy Award-winning actress, Claire Danes.

    2. Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

      Composer

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      Though the first recorded case of autism didn’t occur until two centuries after Mozart’s death, many leading experts have retroactively diagnosed the famous composer as showing signs of Tourettes and Aspergers.

      From his repetitive movements and unusual facial expressions to erratic moods and obsessive thoughts and behaviours, Mozart is likely to have classed as being on the spectrum in his day.

      Still, that did little to hamper his progress or creativity.

      Today, Mozart is regarded as one of the greatest composers the world has ever known, composing over 600 pieces from childhood up to his untimely death at age 35. Many of these works are still regarded as the very epitome of excellence in classical music.

      3. Satoshi Tajiri

        Pokémon inventor

        Satoshi Tajiri may not be the most famous name on our list, but there’s no doubt that you will have heard of his creation.

        Diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, Tajiri grew up with a love of Nintendo’s Game Boy and a passion for insect collecting. He later went on to combine the two into an innovative new Game Boy release called Pokémon, in which gamers would ‘collect’ unique, fictional creatures and use them to battle against their opponents.

        The games would serve as the nucleus of what would eventually become the most successful media franchise of all time, including games, books, movies, merchandise and more.

        Though Tajiri has confirmed that he lives with Aspergers on numerous occasions, he also says that he prefers to let his work speak for itself. Having created a franchise reported to be worth $15 billion, who could blame him?

        4. Emily Dickinson

          Writer and poet

          Reclusive writer Emily Dickisnon is often regarded as one of the great all-time poets.

          While much has been made of her epilepsy, a lesser-known fact is that she was likely to be on the spectrum.

          In Writers on the spectrum: how autism and Asperger syndrome have influenced literary writing, writer Julie Brown accredits many of Dickinson’s famously ‘quirky’ behaviours and characteristics to autism.

          5. Anthony Ianni

            National Championship winning basketball player

            When Anthony Ianni was first diagnosed with PDD-NOS, doctors told his parents that the condition ultimately meant he would never achieve much in his life.

            According to those doctors, Ianni would barely graduate from high school, never go to college, and certainly never become an athlete.

            Fortunately, the basketball fan simply didn’t accept this prediction, instead using it as motivation to push himself onto greater things.

            Eventually, he went on to become the first person with autism to ever play First Division basketball, winning the NCAA National Championship with the Michigan Spartans in 2000.

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            Today, Ianni is a popular motivational speaker who encourages young people with autism to let nothing hold them back when it comes to achieving their dreams.

            6. Sir Anthony Hopkins

              Actor

              The Oscar-winning star of The Silence of the Lambs and many other classic movies, Sir Anthony Hopkins has spoken openly about being diagnosed with high-functioning Asperger’s.

              In one interview, he said that being on the spectrum means that, despite genuinely liking people, he doesn’t have many friends or go to parties.

              Regardless, Sir Anthony has become an actor beloved by millions, and one of the most successful actors of his generation.

              7. Albert Einstein

                Theoretical Physicist

                If there’s anyone on today’s list of hugely successful people with autism who really needs no introduction, Einstein is undoubtedly it.

                We all know that he developed the theory of relativity. We all know that he came up with E = MC2, dubbed “the world’s most famous equation.” Most of us even known that he’s widely regarded as one of -if not the- most influential scientists of his -or any- generation.

                Yet not everyone knows that Einstein also met many of the criteria for autism.

                Like Temple Grandin, he didn’t speak until he was three years old. Then, unlike other children who develop their speech gradually, he immediately began speaking in complete sentences.

                Elsewhere, his inflexible insistence on set routines and ‘sameness’ not to mention his difficulty around other people also lead many behavioural analysts today to believe that Einstein would have been diagnosed as having ASD had he been tested in his lifetime.

                8. Dani Bowman

                  Writer, artist and motivational speaker

                  Unlike others who waited until adulthood to inspire others, Dani Bowman has been motivating fellow young people on the autism spectrum from a young age.

                  A talented illustrator and animator, Bowman launched her own company, DaniMation Entertainment, at just 11 years-old and began working professionally in the animation industry three years later.

                  A passionate autism advocate and public speaker, she is very active in inspiring those with ASD and with disabilities to use their full potential, follow their dreams and achieve their goals.

                  9. Andy Warhol

                    Artist

                    As famous for his eccentricity as he is for painting cans of soup, Andy Warhol was never diagnosed with autism in his lifetime.

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                    However, like Mozart, Einstein and several others, many leading experts agree that the famous pop artist displayed many of the characteristics and behaviours synonymous with an autism diagnosis.

                    Known for being socially inept and often struggling to recognise his friends, Warhol would also use very few words in speech and was also adamant about routine and uniformity in his life.

                    Most experts suggest that Warhol had Asperger’s, though of course, this never stopped him becoming one of the most iconic artists of his age.

                    10. Daryl Hannah

                      Actress

                      Well-known for starring in 1980s blockbuster movies like Blade Runner, Wall Street and Steel Magnolias, actress Daryl Hannah has spoken in interviews about how her diagnosis of Asperger’s syndrome derailed her career.

                      In the past, she has spoken about how she felt “socially awkward and uncomfortable,” at premieres and events, and how the behaviour caused by her Asperger’s left her “practically blacklisted” from the movie industry.

                      Not one to accept defeat, Hannah continued to succeed despite her struggles, appearing in the critically acclaimed Kill Bill movies as well as many other popular films and theatre shows.

                      11. Dan Aykroyd

                        Actor, comedian, musician

                        Canadian performer Dan Aykroyd has been open about being diagnosed with Tourettes and Asperger’s, with the former being treated as a young child.

                        Taking the obsessive traits of autism and using them to his full advantage, Aykroyd says that obsessing over things like ghosts helped him create the Ghostbuster’s movie.

                        12. Susan Boyle

                          Singer

                          When a shy, awkward-looking, middle-aged Scottish woman shuffled onto the stage on UK TV show Britain’s Got Talent, few were ready to give her a chance and many even ridiculed her.

                          Then, she opened her mouth, silencing her naysayers and stunning the audience with her incredible voice.

                          That one TV appearance launched Susan Boyle’s career, a career which saw her sell over 14 million albums, play sold out concerts and amass an army of loyal followers.

                          All of this happened while living with Asperger’s Syndrome, a diagnosis that the singer says came as a “relief” as it helped her understand and make sense of her uniqueness.

                          13. Clay Marzo

                            Surfer

                            Like Anthony Ianni, Clay Marzo proved that being on the autism spectrum is no barrier to athletic or sporting prowess.

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                            Despite being diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome, Marzo carved out a name for himself as one of the most influential and innovative stars in the world of championship surfing.

                            After winning swimming competitions as a child, he achieved third place in the National Scholastic Surfing Association (NSSA) Nationals at aged 11 which led to him signing a professional contract with he Quicksilver team.

                            Four years later, he became the first surfer to ever achieve two perfect 10s in NSSA history, also taking the national championship in the same year.

                            Never allowing Asperger’s to hold him back, Marzo has starred in the documentary film “Clay Marzo: Just Add Water,” talking about his incredible achievements and his experience with Asperger’s.”

                            Today, he volunteers with Surfers Healing, a charity which teaches young people with autism how to surf.

                            14. Tony DeBlois

                              Musician

                              Despite being blind from birth, jazz musician Tony DeBlois began learning the piano aged just two-years old.

                              Showing a natural propensity for the instrument, DeBlois would soon reveal that his talents didn’t just begin and and end with the piano.

                              Diagnosed with autism, he went on to master more than 20 instruments and can play as many as 8,000 pieces of music from memory alone.

                              DeBlois has released multiple albums, toured the world performing concerts, and was even the subject of a made-for-TV movie about his life.

                              15. Dr. Vernon Smith

                                Nobel Prize-winning Professor of Economics

                                Last but by no means least, we finish with a perfect example of someone who truly does see autism as their superpower.

                                Dr. Vernon Smith is a pioneering economics professor largely credited with the invention of experimental economics.

                                This creation led to him winning the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences in 2002.

                                Open about his Asperger’s Syndrome, Dr. Smith has said that much of his success is due to his autism.

                                “I don’t feel any social pressure to do things the way other people are doing them, professionally,” he once told an interviewer. “So I have been more open to different ways of looking at a lot of the problems in economics.”

                                No Holding Back: The Autistic Superheroes Proving Nothing Is Impossible

                                Whether they’re changing the world as we know it, entertaining us in our favourite movies, books, and poems, or overcoming the odds to become champions in their field, what all of these hugely successful people with autism show is that being on the spectrum needn’t be a barrier to success.

                                Everyone from Albert Einstein to Sir Anthony Hopkins has shown us that no matter what obstacles stand in our way, we can always overcome them to achieve our dreams.

                                If nothing else, that’s something all of us can surely find inspiring, regardless as to whether or not we’re on the spectrum.

                                Featured photo credit: Kyle Glenn via unsplash.com

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                                Chris Skoyles

                                Coach, and trainee counsellor specializing in mental health and addiction.

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                                Last Updated on January 13, 2020

                                How to Use the 5 Minute Journal to Invest in Your Happiness

                                How to Use the 5 Minute Journal to Invest in Your Happiness

                                I was 10 and it was a white Lisa Frank journal with a red bubble gum dispenser on the front. It also came with a heart-shaped lock and key which was a must considering I had an older brother living under the same roof who was always looking for new and inventive ways to humiliate me.

                                That one little journal (okay…I called it a diary back then) unlocked a world of potential to me which quite literally became my saving grace, my happy place, for the rest of my life.

                                Over the years, the aesthetics of my journal evolved, as did my writing subjects and style thankfully. But the one thing that’s been constant is that, no matter how sad I am or how bad things have seemed before I started writing, somehow the world and my place in it always becomes clearer and less noisy after just 5 minutes of “writing it out.”

                                In this article, we will take a look at how investing a few minutes a day in the 5 minute journal can lead you to happiness.

                                The Benefits of the 5 Minute Journal

                                For most of my life, I never really knew or cared why writing for even 5 minutes made me happier, I just knew it worked.

                                If I was feeling lost or unhappy, I’d eventually realize I hadn’t written in a while (duh!). So I’d meet myself back at the blank page and word by word, start feeling more like me again.

                                To be completely honest, I did (and still do) this forgetting-to-journal dance way more often than I’d like to admit. For the life of me, I don’t know why I don’t keep doing the thing I know makes me happy every day instead of waiting until I’m unhappy to do the thing. Can you relate?

                                I’m pretty certain it’s not just a me thing: it’s a human thing. We know we’ll be happier if we eat better, exercise, disconnect from technology, get more sleep, etc. but often times, it takes us feeling unhappy in order to put in the effort to be more happy.

                                A couple of months ago, I found myself in that place:

                                I’d hit a wall of resistance around my business and a downturn in my health that caused me to doubt what I was capable of accomplishing. I was completely confused and indecisive about the direction of my business and where I should be focusing my limited energy, so I hired a coach to help me sort through my noisy brain.

                                As I laid out all of my decisions and endless to-do lists in front of her, she asked me an important question:

                                What’s one thing you can start doing everyday that will have a positive impact on all of these things?

                                In other words: What if instead of having to worry about ALL THE THINGS to be happier, you could just do ONE thing and everything else would get better too?

                                I could start every day with a few minutes in my journal.

                                It’s both hilarious and embarrassing that as a coach and a writer (and a coach who works with writers), that I hadn’t thought of this myself. Alas, as the saying goes, doctors are the worst patients.

                                Of course, the answer was writing in my journal! Isn’t the answer almost always the most obvious thing?

                                But sometimes, the answer is so obvious, so simple, so free and convenient that we convince ourselves that it can’t possibly do that much to improve our situation. Somehow in the busy-ness of life, I’d convinced myself I just couldn’t spare that time to do something so…(cringe) arbitrary.

                                Yet, as I thought about my coach’s question and the ONE THING that could positively affect all the things, I realized that journaling for me has always been so much more than a random outlet for exploring my feelings.

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                                Sure, nothing actually happened but me sitting on my bed in my pajamas writing. Over the years, from breakups to big moves, my most life-changing moments–like my decision to pursue writing as a career, to uproot my entire life and move cross country, and my finally feeling ready to become a mother–happened in the quiet moments between me and the pages of my journals.

                                How to Be Happy with the 5 Minute Journal

                                The other day I was talking to a friend of mine about writing this article. I asked her how often she journals and if she thought it made her happier.

                                In general, she said, yes, journaling does seem to help her get things off her chest but she doesn’t always feel better afterward. And, in fact, sometimes if she’s already in a negative place, she can spiral even worse while journaling and go to an even darker place.

                                She told me that usually with time and perspective, she can see that just the act of writing and getting out of her head is therapeutic but, suggested that for people like her, prompts to help her not spiral into the negative abyss would be super helpful.

                                And so, in order to make sure you get the most out of your 5 minute journal, I’ve broken up each writing prompt based on how you’re feeling so you can let your emotions guide the best prompt for you that day to increase your happiness meter.

                                1. When you’re burnt out, talk to your inner hero (a.k.a the “real” you).

                                What’s the one thing everyone tells you about maintaining happy, healthy relationships?

                                You’ve gotta have great communication!

                                But what about your relationship with yourself? How do you connect with you? How do you continue being the hero in your story?

                                The same way that you have to make the time to connect with the people in your life who mean the most to you, you also have to make the time for you to hear your voice:

                                To remember what YOU sound like amidst all of the noise in the world. To listen to your inner hero.

                                For me, the only way I know how to do this, the only way I’ve ever known how to do this, is through journaling.

                                Our brains can go down negative spirals, especially when we’re tired and stressed.

                                In my last Lifehack article about finding motivation, I walk you through some questions you can ask yourself about whether you’re playing the role of victim or hero of your story. Definitely check it out if you’re really on the brink, or in the midst, of some serious burn out.

                                Essentially, if you’re burnt out, you’ve somehow let your circumstances take control of your life. In other words, you’ve started to act like the victim instead of the hero.

                                Luckily, just 5 minutes in your journal can help you find your inner hero (your true voice) and reclaim your right to live your happiest life.

                                Write down these questions in your journal and answer them one at a time–permission to be 100% honest granted:

                                • What do I believe is the #1 reason I’m feeling burnt out?
                                • Who or what did I blame in my last answer?
                                • Taking 100% responsibility for my own life and decisions, and casting blame on no one (including myself), how can I improve this situation?
                                • What decisions am I currently making to stay in these circumstances (how am I choosing them)?
                                • What new decisions can I start making to get closer to where I want to be?
                                • What do I need to let go of in order to get my energy back? What do I need to say “no” to?

                                When you start to own your role of hero, you start to realize how your current choices and limiting beliefs may be holding you back from living the happiest version of your life.

                                The great news is once you realize your past choices have brought you to your current circumstances, you also realize that you can make different choices to bring you to a happier place.

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                                2. When you’re doubting yourself, write off the gremlins.

                                Whenever I’m feeling down on myself, it usually has less to do with what’s happening on the outside, and more to do of what’s happening between my ears. In other words, how “I’m” talking to myself.

                                We all have little shame gremlins (I call mine “Mean Girls”) who live inside of our heads and tell us we’re dumb and ugly and worthless. The only way to combat those noisy buggers is to expose them for the liars they are.

                                Writing down these lies makes them powerless. Once they’re out of your head and on paper, you realize how ridiculous they truly are (even though they were completely owning you just moments before).

                                I like to write out all the nasties and put them in their place (which is on the page and out of my head, pronto). Then I can go back to living my happy truth.

                                Here are some powerful questions to ask your inner gremlins (perhaps better known as you being a real jerk to yourself). Write down each question and answer them in your journal.

                                Ask your gremlins:

                                • What are you saying about me? (Don’t hold back. Really write down all of the terrible thoughts you’re having about yourself)

                                Then ask:

                                • Is anything true about each of the things I just wrote?
                                • Repeat this same exercise for each of the nasty things your gremlins are saying about you and expose them in their lies once and for all.

                                When you’re done, answer these powerful questions:

                                • Knowing what I know now, what’s one thing I can do to improve each of these areas of my life?
                                • Knowing that the voices of the gremlins are strong, what are 3 new beliefs or positive affirmations I can say daily about myself to drown out their negativity?

                                For example, let’s use a fictional character of a guy named Sam. Sam’s gremlins are telling him “you’re a lousy parent, a terrible spouse, and mediocre at work.”

                                If Sam asks himself, “Am I really a lousy parent?” Maybe his answer is “No, I love my kids and I’m doing the best I can. I just wish I could be more attentive when I’m with them instead of so distracted by work.”

                                So maybe Sam decides to not bring his work computer home with him anymore and really unplug once he leaves the office so he can give his kids his full attention.

                                Sam decides that his new daily affirmation is: “I’m a loving father and am fully present for my kids. I save the best of me for my family.”

                                Imagine how much better you’ll feel when you start to take back control over your self talk and program in the messages that empower you and get you closer to the person you strive to be.

                                3. When you’re indecisive or afraid, talk to your fear.

                                Those same shame gremlins or mean girls inside of our heads feed off of fear. It’s like a good piece of gossip they can’t help but spread and exaggerate.

                                Luckily, when we write out how we’re feeling and what negative thoughts are spiraling, we can generally recognize when it’s actually just our fears talking.

                                You’re probably wondering how to tell if it’s fear talking or your intuition, right? This is where exploring your feelings comes into play.

                                Are you feeling powerless? Are you feeling anxious or sad? Everyone’s response to fear is different but it’s never a positive feeling.

                                If you’re at peace and calm but feel nudged that something isn’t right, that’s most-likely your intuition talking. But if you’re in a glass cage of negative emotions, you can bet fear is the culprit.

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                                Don’t hate on fear too much though. Our fears are just trying to protect us from something–the rub is they also usually keep us from something even better in the process.

                                I like to use journaling as a way to have a little talk with my fear, understand where it’s coming from and then decide if it’s worth listening to.

                                Here’s your journaling prompt for hashing it out with your fear:

                                Again, write down these questions in your journal one at a time and answer each one:

                                Ask your fear:

                                • What are you trying to protect me from?

                                Once you answer that, ask:

                                • What are you preventing me from having if I listen to you?

                                If the thing you really want is on the other side of your fear, then you know what you have to do next (luckily journals are a great place to make to-do lists as well)!

                                My last and favorite questions to ask fear is:

                                • What’s the absolute worst-case scenario?

                                For example, let’s say you’re terrified of breaking ties with a client who is making your professional life miserable. You may answer this question with something like “My client blacklists me and smears ugly rumors about me all around town and not only do I lose one client but my entire business goes down.”

                                Eeesh. That does sound scary. Now ask yourself:

                                • What are some steps I can take to ensure the worst case scenario doesn’t happen?

                                And then:

                                • How likely is it that the worst-case scenario will actually happen (especially if I use the plan above)?

                                Maybe, when you think about it, the client is actually preventing you from bringing in new business because they’re taking up so much of your time.

                                And maybe that client doesn’t even have the best reputation so the chances of them being able to bring you down are pretty small.

                                What if you spent one hour a week for the next 3 weeks working on bringing in new business to replace the the income you make from that client, and figure out a way to end the contract in a very respectful, classy way to hopefully make the odds of them making a stink minimal?

                                Now you have a plan! But there’s one more question to ask yourself:

                                • If the worst case scenario happened, what would you do?

                                Maybe you realize that if you really needed to, you could always go back to your previous job; they loved you and beg you to all the time. Or you could get by for a couple of months until you were able to bring in some more clients, especially if you cut back on expenses.

                                Once you stare your fear in the face, it magically loses its power. Left inside of your head, it can destroy you; but taking a few minutes to look at it and use it as a friend who’s showing you where you may need to implement a plan in order to protect yourself, you can take back the reins of your happiness and realize that fear really isn’t all that scary at all.

                                At this point, it needs to be said that journaling isn’t only good for getting out the nasty feelings, it’s also super useful for recording the good stuff of life which leads me to the fourth writing prompt.

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                                4. When you’re in a funk, focus on gratitude.

                                Just about any happiness book or article you read will tell you that being in a state of gratitude dramatically increases your happiness. For me, having a place to get down to the truth of my life and what’s actually going really well and what I’m grateful for helps put everything into perspective, especially when I’ve got a case of the blues.

                                Here are some of my favorite gratitude prompts to help get me out of a funk and focusing on the sunnier side of life.

                                Write down these questions in your journal one at a time and answer each one:

                                • What is something good that happened today?
                                • What made me laugh or smile today?
                                • Who am I grateful for today?
                                • What am I grateful for today?
                                • With my “gratitude glasses” on, how do my problems or the funk I’m in look in relation to all of the good things I have in my life?

                                Take a look at this article too to learn more about keeping a gratitude journal: How a Gratitude Journal and Positive Affirmations Can Change Your Life

                                Shifting out of a funk and into gratitude shifts your energy out of “woe is me” and into “yay for me” which means, based on the Law of Attraction, you’ll begin to attract more of the things you want and less of what you don’t. Seriously, yay for you!

                                5. When you’re uninspired or bored with the status quo, let it flow.

                                One of the best and easiest ways to tap into your inspiration and feel a little bit of creative magic in your life is through stream of consciousness writing.

                                I dare you to put your pen on a blank page for 5 minutes and do nothing but make sure the pen doesn’t stop moving.

                                No thinking. No judgements. The only thing you’re not allowed to do is overthink or judge your writing. It’s all good. Everything that comes out is good (even if it’s total crap).

                                When I was in grad school, I took this awesome class on creativity and in it read a book called From Where you Dream by Robert Olen Butler. The book is mostly about fiction writing but essentially, he says that the best time to tap into your subconscious (where your “flow” lives) is when you first wake up in the morning. Since you’re fresh from dreaming, your brain is still tuned to that frequency, so to speak, and not clouded by “reality” from your day-to-day life.

                                So my last and final 5-minute journal prompt for you, uninspired one, is to wake up and let yourself keep dreaming on paper.

                                Here are your instructions:

                                1. Set the timer for 5 minutes.
                                2. Open your journal.
                                3. Pick up your pen.
                                4. Keep your pen moving until your timer stops.

                                What I love about this is it requires releasing all expectations and giving yourself creative freedom to let whatever needs to come out come out.

                                Become Happier in 5 Minutes (or Even Less)

                                Giving yourself a safe space to not expect anything other than to just show up and be honest is incredibly liberating.

                                In a world where there are endless things we are supposed to be doing, and ways in which we’re supposed to be doing them, I love showing up to a blank page with no requirements other than to just let my hand move.

                                It’s free and requires nothing from me other than just showing up wherever I am–talk about an endless source of grace!

                                Plus it gets my myriad thoughts out of my head and allows me to release them from my body, which research at top universities has shown can dramatically reduce stress.[1]

                                You don’t need to change EVERYTHING in your life all at once (it doesn’t work anyway, trust me, I’ve tried).

                                Start with giving yourself the gift of reflection in your journal every day and see how your life starts to change. I guarantee you’ll feel more connected with yourself in the process and over time everything in your life will start to be a better reflection of you and what you value.

                                And that, my friends, is the key to lasting happiness.

                                More Journaling Ideas

                                Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

                                Reference

                                [1] Harvard Health Publishing: Writing about emotions may ease stress and trauma

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