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This person identifies as neurodiverse. This means their communication style may differ from yours. 

What is neurodiverse? 

Neurodiverse (sometimes called neurodivergent) is a term that describes a wide range of individuals, including people with ADHD, autism, PTSD, developmental or intellectual disabilities, dyslexia, traumatic brain injury, Tourette syndrom, anxiety, depression, sensory processing disorders, bipolar disorder, OCD, Down Syndrome, and others.

 

In general, neurodiverse individuals' brains may function differently than the expected or established societal norms of brain function and communication (often referred to as neurotypical).

How does this affect communication? 

People who are neurodiverse can be perceived as being too direct, blunt, or even rude. They may struggle with communication that expects them to infer (mind-read), interpret nonverbal cues, make assumptions, maintain eye contact, make small talk, pick up on sarcasm, euphemisms, or subtext, perform expected social acts, such as a handshake or hug, or adhere to other established societal norms of behavior (neurotypical behavior). 

Neurodiverse people may do things like talk over someone, overemphasize a point, find something humorous that a neurotypical person would not find humorous, become overwhelmed or unable to communicate in a large group of people, have strong reactions to lights, sounds, textures, smells, or tastes, or fidget (sometimes referred to as stimming). 

Although society generally sees these things as a deficit, neurodiverse people bring many benefits to the table when they are part of a group or team. Their different way of thinking can provide valuable insight, challenge outdated models, and prompt reflection about the "why" of processes and procedures.

Can I use this page in my email signature? 

Yes! Please feel free to link or copy/paste this information. You may wish to add the symbol for neurodiversity ∞ after your name, with the text "What is this?" hyperlinked to this website. 

 

 If you do find this information helpful, we ask that you consider a small donation to support the work we do at Culture Connection AZ. We are a 501(c)(3) organization and your donation is tax deductible.

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