By Mallory Hubl, MS, MA
Health & Wellness Coordinator, CIP Berkeley
When we don’t feel well, it seeps into every aspect of our lives. Lethargy, a poor attitude, inertia, and even maladaptive coping mechanisms can be common signs that we aren’t operating optimally. Although social skills and career skills hog much of the limelight as important areas of function for people on the autism spectrum, I like to understand wellness as the glue that holds our lives together.
As I work with young adults with autism and other learning differences, I have the opportunity to support their health and wellness goals as part of a holistic transition to independence. Some of the students I work with are working through sensory issues with things like the texture of food, the feeling of sweat on their body, even the great outdoors. Others have trouble with coordination, and others yet are genuinely disinterested in cooking or physical activity.
Whatever the reason may be, we can find comfort in knowing that the path to health and healing has always been individualized - and finding what works for people with autism is no different. Below you will find some tricks I use to help students realize success.