This piece was meant to answer that question, albeit in a meandering way. Basically: I let a lot of non-work things slide, and I’m naturally very good at sequencing tasks, dividing them up into sub-parts, and motivating myself to complete them. I come across as really productive and efficient because my brain is naturally really good at hyper-focusing on a task and executing it; when it comes to taking care of myself, knowing my emotions, traveling to visit friends or for work activities, etc, I’m a lot less effective.
I really appreciate the compliment about my writing, though I have to admit I feel conflicted about the idea of being an inspiration to other autistic people. On one hand, yes, I hope my life is an illustration of what can happen when we are accommodated and given autonomy. When autistic people have told me that my story gives them hope for their futures, I feel really good about that. At the same time…I don’t think it’s fair that in order to be a successful autistic adult, it requires a really specialized, financially rewarding skill, an advanced degree, and a ton of good luck. I think all autistic people are wonderful and perfect just as they are, and they all deserve to have wonderful lives no matter how productive they are or aren’t.