You are different, not less

You are different, not less

Leadership, Personal Growth

Written by Tracey

February 12, 2023

You’re too sensitive! Ouch! If I had a dollar for every time someone said that to me, I’d be Lotto 649 rich! But unfortunately, those words left me feeling anything but wealthy. Instead, I felt broken and deeply flawed.

Being “too sensitive” implied an imbalance or difference that shouldn’t be. The criticism was devastating at times, and my self-esteem suffered. I consulted every self-help book on the market to “fix my problem.”

One of the most promising developments since the publication of “The Geek Syndrome” has been the emergence of the concept of neurodiversity: The notion that conditions like Autism, Dyslexia, and Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) should be regarded as naturally occurring cognitive variations with distinctive strengths that have contributed to the evolution of technology and culture rather than mere checklists of deficits and dysfunctions. ~ Steve Silberman

And then came a conversation that was a game-changer for me. During my coach training in 2003, a mentor said, “I can’t help but notice that you relate to your gift as a flaw.” Huh? WHAT GIFT? Hold the phone. Are you kidding me? Could you repeat that? Did you say gift? “Yes,” she said, “your ability to sense things is remarkable. You’re a gifted coach already”. Tears of joy and relief marked the beginning of my healing and the emergence of a loving, accepting relationship with myself.

That year I began to safely explore and unmask the many unusual traits I hid from even my closest friends. Finally, for the first time in my life, I could identify with the unique ways I needed to take care of my well-being, physically, psychologically and spiritually, even when my actions occurred as odd to others. Although I didn’t need the official confirmation, a qualified psychologist diagnosed me as Autistic in May of 2021.

Those old flaws are now the tools of my trade.

I perceive the world differently and uniquely process information.
I am highly intuitive and empathetic, a sensor.
I read energy and see the relationship of events many years into the future.
I am a visual, colourful and highly creative thinker.
I am incredibly passionate about what interests me.
I synthesize multiple streams of data in dialogue.
I hyperfocus and rapidly research my interests until I deeply understand them.
I constantly and continually analyze existence and the meaning of life.


I honour my gifts through acts of self-love.

I balance my need for solitude and silence with my desire to be a great partner.
I avoid scratchy or tight clothing.
I minimize my exposure to loud noises and environments that cause sensory overstimulation.
I find socializing stressful, but love to experience the hubbub from an adjacent room.
Small talk is uncomfortable so I engage in deep and open topics.
I get anxious or upset before and during transitions to unfamiliar situations, and social events. I prepare and self soothe. 

Have you ever been told you are too much of something?

Remember that you are different and not less. You are loved, and you belong. 

If you question anything, let it be how to honour your unique traits and gifts with acts of self love.

Our world is changing, human adaptation is a natural and predictable inevitability. You may be exactly what our planet needs and early to the party.


“Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity”, Steve Silberman

“I am different, not less.” Temple Grandin


Written by Tracey

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