Autistic magic ~ a self care kit…

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This is the ✨‘autistic magic ~ a self care kit’ ✨ from the wonderfully talented Jas from  @batmoons

The pack contains: burnt out zine (how to cope with autistic burnout) 🧠, doing stuff outside zine (how to cope outside/on public transport, a guide for anxious autistics) 🌳, an actually autistic print💡, a please do not touch me badge 🚫 and…stickers!

Swipe through to check out some photos of what’s in the pack and head over to my IGTV section to check out and unpacking video and flick through the zines!

Check out Jas’s Etsy shop to buy the kit, zines and lots more lovely things!

Daily sensory things that are hard to handle…🌍

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Oh heyyyy everyone! Coming back at you with another doodle today…’Daily sensory things that are hard to handle’ 👀 so these are a few of the daily things that overwhelm meee! Literally had a fire alarm test at my workplace today. Did I jump out of my skin?

YUP.

Do you struggle with any of these things? Or have daily sensory stuff that drives you nuts too? 🥜 Comment down below! Feel free to share my drawings but as always please credit me: @21andsensory

I was interviewed on the ‘Thoughty Auti’ podcast! 🧠

Hey everyone! Last week I was interviewed by the lovely Thomas from @aspergersgrowth on his podcast ‘Thoughty Auti’.

It went live last Saturday so go check it out! It’s everywhere you’d normally listen to podcasts and also on his YouTube channel too! Was such a nice chat and we talked all things sensory and autism related. Let me know what you think 💭

Links to the podcast:

Or search ‘Thoughty Auti’ wherever you usually listen to podcasts!

Aspergers Growth / Thomas’s links:

21andsensory Christmas Gift Guide!🎄

A 3-part Christmas Gift Guide courtesy of me @21andsensory!

  • Memory / Photobook: Try websites such as Vista Print, Cheerz, Free Prints, SnapFish, Photobox, Papier,
  • Tangle: Just such a great fidget, it’s so easy and simple!
  • Chewigem Hexichew: Great idea for more moderate-heavier chewers
  • Fluffy Socks: Who doesn’t love a pair of super cosy socks?!
  • Ear Defenders: Worth looking at the Kidz online store and their store on Amazon (they do adult ear defenders too – don’t let the name put you off!)
  • Stationary: Try pound/dollar stores, WHSmith, Target, Kikki K, Ryman, PaperChase, The Works, Flying Tiger, etc
  • Fidget cube: This is the official fidget cube from Antsy labs but there’s lots of versions all over Amazon and in toy stores
  • Plushies: Worth shopping around on Amazon or looking in toy stores like The Entertainer
  • Bubble pop keyring: Again available in toy stores too
  • Activity books: HobbyCraft and The Works are great for activity books in the UK. Also again worth shopping around online and looking on Amazon

  • Scented candles: Yankee Candles can be quite overpowering sometimes so I recommend trying out candles before buying them or gifting a voucher for a candle store! Also supermarkets and places like TK/TJ Maxx do great more affordable scented candles that usually aren’t as strong.
  • Reuseable ear plugs: Worth shopping around for online or even getting fitted for you own pair
  • Marble Fidget: Can also be found in pound/dollar stores too
  • Weighted jacket: Honestly cannot recommend the Sensory Direct weighted jacket highly enough – I bought my own (not sponsored) and honestly love it. Even the hood is weighted!
  • Weighted lap pad: Also worth looking at all the weighted products on the Sensory Direct store.
  • Books on Autism: so SO many great books available online on Amazon and in book stores such as Waterstones.
  • Books by Autistic people: I only had room to mention 3 above but please Google books by Autistic people further – there are such a wide range of fab books out there to read I couldn’t possibly name them all. Also look back through my blog posts to see which books I’ve read and my reviews on them!
  • Retro games / game consoles: Have a look online at CEX, Amazon, Game, HMV, etc
  • Music subscription: Worth looking into a Spotify or Apple Music subscription as a gift/voucher
  • Vinyl / CD’s: Your best bet is to look online, in local vintage vinyl stores or on sites like Ebay for some good finds
  • Lava lamp: Double check you buy one that comes with the bulb as they can be quite specific and hard to find!
  • Liquid timer: Also available online in sensory stores!
  • Chewigem Eternity necklace: A stylish yet chewable necklace
  • Soft toys: again worth looking on Amazon and shopping around different toy stores
  • Happiness book and so many happiness journal books are available these days. I would recommend looking online at Amazon reviews and in larger book stores too
  • Mindfulness book and again mindfulness journals can be found everywhere these days. I’ve found lots of stationary stores have ranges of them too
  • Sunglasses: Vouchers for/towards sunglasses or tinted glasses can be super helpful!
  • Sweets / Candy: There are cute subscription boxes that will deliver sweets/candy to your door monthly, or just buy some old fashioned sweets from a local store or pick ‘n’ mix!
  • Noise Cancelling headphones: Worth researching into both Sony and Bose noise cancelling headphones. They both seem to be leading the way in terms of NC / ambient sound reduction. Also some great (much more affordable) NC headphones are available on Amazon at different price points – great whatever your budget! Might be worth getting a voucher towards headphones as that allows the person to go into a store and try before they buy.
  • Chewigem Chubes: Great for tying to the ends of hoodie drawstrings if you are a nervous biter like I am and end up ruining the strings on all your jumpers
  • Peapod keyring: The cutest and most satisfying fidget!
  • Chewigem Twister Bangles: So funky and subtle at the same time.
  • Arts and Crafts supplies: Again pound/dollar stores are great for Arts and Crafts bits and pieces. Also have a look at stores such as HobbyCraft,
  • Puzzles: SO many great puzzles online at Amazon, The Works, Argos, The Entertainer, the list goes on…
  • Fairy lights: Battery and mains fairy lights can be bought cheaply from pound/dollar stores, Primark, larger chain supermarkets, etc

PHEW. Hope you found this gift guide helpful, I tried to link as many gifts as physically possible!

I was a guest on another Podcast…🎤

This is just a lil’ post to say that the lovely Nikki from @teachingautism interviewed me on her podcast recently and here is the link to the episode:

Teaching Autism: 21andsensory Podcast Episode

Do have a listen either on her website, Apple podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you listen to podcasts usually 🎧

The episode is all about ‘masking’ as an autistic / sensory person. Thanks again to the lovely Nikki for having me on, and do check out her website here 🙂

Here’s what Nikki wrote in the podcast description:

Today on the podcast I’m talking all about autism masking and sensory processing disorder. I receive a lot of messages and emails from you all about masking or camouflaging. And I thought the best way to help answer your questions – was to do a podcast episode on the subject!

I love being able to share my knowledge with you all, this time I wanted personal experience. I came across Emily on Instagram when she shared a great visual image about masking. And that’s when I knew, Emily would be perfect to come on my podcast.

Emily is diagnosed with sensory processing disorder, and she is currently going through the diagnosis process of autism. She is the creator of 21 and Sensory. And on here, she shares her daily life and experiences to spread awareness and acceptance within the community.

WHAT ARE WE TALKING ABOUT?

Today on the podcast, we are talking all about;

  • Who is Emily?
  • What is masking?
  • Why might someone mask?
  • What affect can masking have on an individual?
  • How do people mask?
  • What way can others in the community support you?
  • Emily’s personal experience

This is such an open and honest interview from Emily. I hope that you’re able to take away some ideas and knowledge from this epsiode today.

HELPFUL LINKS AND RESOURCES

I would love for you to share this episode with your friends and colleagues for them to find out more too! And if you love listening to podcasts, you can find more on iTunes or my website here.

World Mental Health Day 🧠

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A few days ago it was World Mental Health Day and I saw lots of Instagram posts that were so genuine and honest about the struggles of living with mental health issues. l wanted to share a little doodle I did explaining how mental health affects sensory people (and how the two can become quite intertwined to the extent that it’s hard to tell what’s responsible for what feeling, thought, etc).

I’ve explained before that my mental health is confusing to me because my issues  can randomly intensify and l also struggle with episodes of depression which can be really debilitating. Obviously everyone’s mental health is very different but I do think it’s important to be supportive to each other both online and in the real world. I do think it’s great that self care is becoming more a ‘thing’ now and it really is important in order to keep functioning in life.

I find that my mental health mixed with my sensory issues is always tough to deal with but having a community of neurodiverse and like minded people here on Instagram has really helped me to understand not only myself but to understand how others cope in the big wide world.

(Doodle is my own view of mental health and sensory issues and I totally understand that not everyone may agree / relate to what I’ve said and drawn as we all experience things very differently.)

The world is too loud today 🌍

IMG_0203Hi everyone ☺️ Here’s a quick little doodle I did (which describes a couple of days I’ve had this week!) you know sometimes when the world around you just feels a bit louder then usual? 🔈 It can affect your mood and for us sensory-beings can lead to overwhelm 🌍

I work in an open plan office which can get loud as people pop by each other’s desks to chat 💬 instead of booking meeting rooms. I can deal with this to some degree but sometimes it gets too much and then I know it’s time for a lil’ walk out of the office for a bit or to the toilets just for 5 to get a bit of quiet 🤫

How do you cope when things get too loud for you? 📢

Happiness = a swing in the garden 🌱

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Happiness = having a swing in the garden 🌱 this is a hanging swing I bought from amazon a while back. I am able to hang it from a secure fixture in my bedroom ceiling or outdoor from this very handy (and sturdy) tree we have at the bottom of our garden! 🌿 Swinging is said to be great for regulating sensory people’s vestibular system and the motion of the swinging back and forth can be calming 🎡

It’s going to be a hot bank holiday weekend here in the U.K 🇬🇧 and I know how lots of people can struggle with the heat both sensory and mental health wise. It’s important that you do you, and by that I mean you do what’s comfortable and what makes you happy. For example, if that’s sitting inside in the cool and enjoying the view of the outside that’s okay.

What’s not okay is peer pressure or questioning from others as to why you aren’t wearing ‘summer clothes’ or ‘getting out in the sunshine’. Not everyone enjoys the heat (and some of us have the added fun of being  very pale and burning easy 🙋🏻‍♀️) so it’s important to be firm but polite in these situations with something like ‘I’m enjoying the weather in my own way, but thanks for checking in on me.’ 🏖 Any other ways you recommend saying this? Comment down below and let’s share ☺️