Hi guys, it’s been another of those crazily busy weeks. I’m running slightly odd hours as I’m tutoring at lot more than I was. Like many people on the spectrum, aspects of self-employments suits me, to an extent. Indeed, I’ve been self-employed in several roles, DJ and promoter, enquiry agent and now tutoring ESL. What I don’t like, is the lack surety; the is no progression, if I want to earn more, I have to make myself available for more hours and hope that there is sufficient students for me to get allocated. It’s not certain, but it is only temporary.
Couple this with a couple of exams I have pending and yes, I’m currently a stressed bunny.
So, how do I deal with this stress. Primarily, I find myself stimming like mad. This can be ‘loud hands’ (flapping, clicking) over gesticulating, tapping things, clicking pens. I also pace… a lot, I rarely sit still for any length of time and pacing is part of my self-soothing behaviour. At times, I will even simply put on music and have a ‘lounge disco’.
So what is ‘stimming’?
In short it is any form of repeatative behaviour which a person does in order to feel more settled during times of stress. Personally, I tap, draw imaginary patterns with hands or feet, rock, pace and when really anxious and on the verge of meltdown, I tend to rub my head repeatedly. I probably have more, these are just the ones that I am aware of.
It’s a comfort thing and for those around us, it can be an indication that something is bothering us. Those who know me, are learning my stims and now ask if I’m OK and that is very much appreciated. Aside from a self-soothing action, it’s part of who I, and the larger community are. We are unique and all individuals, just wired a little different to the NT individuals.