The Many Strengths of Dyslexics

What if we told you that being dyslexic can foster strengths that can help you excel? Here are several advantages reported by successful dyslexics that may help you along the way.

Nothing affects your chances at succeeding in school like not having the skills to read, spell, and write. This is, unfortunately, what dyslexia is all about. It can be the one impediment to achieving one's goals in work and life. But, what if we told you that being dyslexic can foster strengths that can help you excel? With the right approaches and support, you can turn this challenge around.

Some of the world’s great thinkers, entrepreneurs, celebrities, authors, and billionaires happen to be dyslexic (see the Success Stories). But, as we all know, success requires perseverence. A study by Eberli, Peng, and Rice (2021) found that adolescents with dyslexia did not evidence any more creativity than their peers without dyslexia. That said, the authors reported that adults with dyslexia did have an edge over their non-dyslexic counterparts in creativity. This would suggest that, over time, individuals with dyslexia learn how to use their personal strengths to excel. Further research is needed in this area, but for now, read the above stories of successful adults with dyslexia for insight as to how they managed to go the distance. Hopefully, their stories will inspire you. Here are some of the advantages that are reported by successful dyslexics that may help you along the way. Keep in mind that these are based on these people's perceptions.

  1. Strong memory for stories: Some individuals with dyslexia recall facts as if reading a good storybook rather than just as a list of random data. Having narrative reasoning on your side may help improve your memory and help integrate contextual information better. Perhaps acting or writing is in your future!
  2. Excellent puzzle solving skills: Dyslexics might struggle in the reading department, but when it comes to solving puzzles, many are pros. They accurately identify the right shape and figure out complex problems like no one else can ever do. Rather than being a sequential thinker going from one idea to the next, many dyslexics thrive in environment that allow and foster simultaneous thinking in which ideas are connected via different routes than a straight line. This is why we see so many entrepreneurs with dyslexia.
  3. Brilliant spatial reasoning: The scientists at the University of East London found that young dyslexics are excellent at remembering a virtual environment when compared to non-dyslexics. In this regard, many dyslexics succeed in fields like engineering, industrial and graphic design, architecture, as well as construction.
  4. Great conversationalists: Reading words might not be their strength, but many dyslexics are quite profound in reading people when interacting with them. They will tell you exactly what the problem is and how you can go about solving it. They are also quite considerate of other people’s thoughts.
  5. Tremendous empathizers:  Many dyslexics are also quite sincere when it comes to their personality. The experiences as a result of the reading and writing challenges can cause them to feel more empathic toward others who may struggle.
  6. Wonderfully imaginative: Dyslexics can really envision a fantastic view of the world. They make great use of their imaginations, hence all the artists, actors, and authors with dyslexia. They have a keen sense of curiosity and interest.
  7. Abstract thinkers: Just when you thought all hope might have been lost, it turns out that dyslexic people can comprehend abstract ideas. They are good philosophers. They understand things that are not tangible, many of which are innate human qualities, such as bravery, love, and deception.
  8. Think outside of the box: It’s nice to stick to standards, but if you really wish to go far, you have to think originally, as evidenced by today’s entrepreneurs. One of the more advantageous qualities in many dyslexic people is their ability to think outside of the box. They come up with excellent, unorthodox ideas that are not only fresh, but lucrative as well.
  9. Critical thinkers: Another trait that some dyslexics possess is their ability to use logical reasoning. They know exactly what the difference in two topics really is and will use critical thinking to solve a problem.
  10. Astutely analyze stories told or read to them: Instead of reading, dyslexics can still get ahead by analyzing the stories that are being told or read to them out loud. Although they may have their friends, family, or text-to-speech technology doing the reading for them, because of their strong spoken language comprehension abilities, they understand the plot and the story. Many can keep track of all the characters and plot twists and turns better than some non-dyslexics.

These are only 10 of the traits that can come with being dyslexic. We are sure you have other ideas of what has worked for you. Send your tips to our Facebook page. You never know—your tip may be just the ticket to help someone at a time of need. Success Starts Here!

Jillian Petrova is an experienced educator working with an online academic consultancy. Edited by Joanne M. Pierson, Ph.D, CCC-SLP.