Five tips on how to become the best version of yourself in 2021By Ryan Lee | January 6, 2021
Having autism is a daily challenge – a lifelong process of learning about myself and how to find my place in this world. My experience has inspired me to advocate for the community, doing whatever it takes to raise awareness for people like myself and the many unique talents and diverse perspectives we have to offer.
I was diagnosed when I was 3 years old, but I wasn’t told of my diagnosis until I was a teenager. Even before I knew I was autistic, I always knew I was different - feeling like an oddball among my peers and wondering why I wasn’t accepted and couldn’t fit in. Throughout school, I mostly felt left out. I saw my peers at school or other school-related functions like football games and dances but was never invited to parties or other gatherings outside of school. Feeling left out is hard for people on the spectrum because we want so badly to feel part of something.
I love to meet new people even if I do come off too strong sometimes. Because I tend to ask the same questions or talk about the same topics with a bit too much gusto, I noticed that people seem to get frustrated with me and avoid making conversation. I later learned that having great curiosity about certain things is part of my autism – it’s simply who I am. I think if we all could be more direct and open with our feelings like many autistic people are, then the world would be a much better place. I know the world isn’t going to change, so I had to learn to adapt and plan for what lies ahead.
Here’s to hoping that we can all find the best versions of ourselves in 2021 because the world can certainly use a little more positivity and light.
Five tips on how to become the best version of yourself in 2021
Planning ahead always helps me feel less overwhelmed. I don’t know what the future is going to bring, but I know I will take it on without any fear. Even if 2021 is bound to bring some new challenges, especially for the autism community, I encourage everyone to continue to live your best life – even if it looks a little different than we thought it would. If we plan ahead, we can roll with the punches and make the best of every day. Planning and positivity is the recipe for success!
Embrace who you are
Be the person you see in the mirror. Flaws and all, there’s no denying who you are. We must learn to embrace all of the qualities that make us unique. It’s who we are and what makes us special. If some people don't appreciate it, then it’s their loss. Don’t waste your energy on trying to change for somebody who isn’t willing to see you for who you truly are. If somebody isn’t willing to dig deeper to get to know you, then they aren’t worth stressing over. If you want to learn more about me and see how I’ve learned to embrace who I AM, you can visit my website!
Lean on friends and family
Cherish the real friendships you have in your life because you never know how valuable they are until you lose them. Your true friends and those who care about you will always be there to raise you up. Use their support to help you strive toward your goals in the new year. With a little help from our friends and family, we can all become better versions of ourselves.
We ALL can make a difference
Every individual on the spectrum has something they can contribute for the betterment of society. It doesn’t matter if you’re nonverbal, socially awkward, or struggling in other areas, we all have special gifts inside of us that we can share. I’m still on a journey to figuring out my gifts, but I can still lift other people up in the process.
Pay it forward
I am all about positivity and helping others find their paths in life. Of course, I will continue to learn about myself and improve in my own ways, but if I can help just one person improve their life in the new year, then I’ll be satisfied. I encourage all of you not only to focus on yourself but try to help someone else along the way. The more we come together and help one another, the better the world will be for future generations.