further thoughts about working with dyslexia

After publishing my previous post, I thought a bit more on dyslexia and how it affects me day to day. I would say that there is a stark difference between how I function in a loud, busy environment, and a quiet, calm setting.

When I am relaxed, listening to calming ambient music, or simply basking in complete silence, I don’t find the task of reading or writing to be quite that arduous. Sure, my reading speed is still pretty slow, and I sometimes have to go back and reread sections because my comprehension levels run slightly askew, but by and large I do not struggle to comprehend what I’m reading. It’s in this sort of environment and headspace that I’m able to read effectively, and I simply have to be in this zone in order to edit my own work.

On the other hand, if I am seated in a loud environment with ample distractions, I find the act of reading to be near impossible.

Prior to being diagnosed with dyslexia, I used to be handed briefs in university, in a classroom setting, and struggle to understand even a few sentences of what I was reading. When I was presented with a document in the office at work, I would stare at it and stare at it, reading the same words over and over until I finally gave up.

Following the confirmation that I did in fact have dyslexia, I would simply take the documents and leave the room, and seat myself elsewhere in order to read over it in silence. It’s not always the case that it is somebody talking in the background that causes me to become distracted, it can even be something as simple as somebody moving in their chair or breathing heavily.

It’s strange how my mind can work so fluently and speedily when I am isolated from all distractions. Realising this, and taking action to ensure I am not distracted, is vital in order for me to be productive.

No matter what anyone says, if you are trying to work with dyslexia, always do what’s right for you. If you’d work much better if you were sat on your own, don’t be afraid to politely explain this to your colleagues or fellow students and take yourself into a different, quieter space. Of course, this isn’t always possible, in which case don’t be afraid to speak with your manager or a teacher and explain the situation.

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