In the second article of the series, we explore how the Asperger's Decision Tree Pattern shapes the choices of people with Asperger's, in every decision from what they like and dislike to who they love and don't love.
Asperger's Decision Tree Step #1: The "Freedom Cycle"
Let me give you a heads up here, right at the start. I have Asperger's. Most people do not believe me. Even so, I have it. I certainly do.
Why tell you this? Moreover, what makes me so sure I do have Asperger's? For one thing, because my thinking follows the Decision Tree you see above. In fact, my having Asperger's is what lead me to discover this particular Decision Tree. I was trying to understand my own thinking processes. And the thinking processes of the people who have come to me with Asperger's.
In fact, this Decision Tree is still the way I still process my thoughts about everything from how the heck I'll ever finish writing this article in less than forty pages, all the way to my worried thoughts as to when I will ever get time to finish replacing my patio doors. All the while, I'm struggling to resist urges to somehow become the most knowledgeable writer and patio door replacer on the planet. Two journeys that I am sure will get me lost. And procrastinating like crazy.
My point? When it comes to this particular Decision Tree, I know this process, inside and out. Moreover, I've helped a bunch of people with Asperger's to begin to know it as well. And watched how, by knowing this process, they become empowered. And change their lives. Especially in the way they interact with other people.
I've even begun to develop what we Emergence Practitioners call, a "Paper Therapy." A Paper Therapy is an Emergence intervention which helps people to create visual "bullet holes." What I mean is, Paper Therapies, such as "P" Curves" and "Social Priority Maps," allow people to make visual-to-experiential, mental records of these patterns. These patterns literally emerge in their minds. Beautifully and permanently. More on this later.
So what is it like to process your thoughts with this particular Decision Tree?
Well, for one thing, it's a lot like the process I described in the first article of the series. It's sort of like being on a spiritual journey, a path which unfolds with great joy and positive feelings. At least, until someone asks you to take a break from the process and to pay attention to something else. At which point, the joyous part of the journey breaks down into painful digressions, as thoughts ond feelings spill over the place in great messy gobs.
Here, then, is what makes people with Asperger's obsess about things. They obsess, and focus so narrowly on thier interests, because they feel wonderfully spiritual when they do. Focused, Energised. Passionate. Centered. We Asperger's folks simply love the Precision-to-Correction-to-Precision part of the Decision Tree. And we literally live to be in it.
Obviously, then, this is why we often seem so optimistic. It is also why almost no one with Asperger's struggles with prejudice. At least, not with anyone's nationality or skin color. Why not? Because we see these differences as diversity and not as things to be afraid of. We, in fact, love diversity. More things to learn. More ways to be excited. And more ways to be in the Precision to Correction to Precision part of our Decision Tree.
Asperger's Decision Tree Step #2: The "Feedback Cycle"
Asperger's Decision Tree Step #3: The "Failure Cycle"
Asperger's Decision Tree Step #4: The "Escape Cycle"
So what happens here? Here, we make the "great escape!" The desperate leap away from perfection and toward being human.