Normal Sucks: How to Live, Learn, and Thrive Outside the Lines with Jonathan Mooney

Normal Sucks: How to Live, Learn, and Thrive Outside the Lines with Jonathan Mooney


Episode 74  Jonathan Mooney

Dr. Dan welcomes back author, speaker, advocate, and entrepreneur Jonathan Mooney to the podcast. His new book Normal Sucks will inspire listeners of all ages. A highly sought after public speaker, Jonahtan Mooney has been inspiring audiences with his story and message for two decades. Jonathan has been featured in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, USA Today, HBO, NPR, ABC News, New York Magazine, The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and other media and he speaks across the nation about neurological and physical diversity.  

Jonathan Mooney inspires those who live with differences and reassures us all that Normal Sucks (his book title is inspired by his incredible mom). Jonathan says we need to stop thinking about deficits and instead support the fact that there are advantages and upshots to every type of brain and body. As a neuro-diverse kid diagnosed with dyslexia and ADHD who didn’t learn to read until he was twelve, the realization that that he wasn’t the problem―the system and the concept of normal were―saved Mooney’s life. In today’s show Dr. Dan and Jonathan explore  normal vs. the toll that being “not normal” takes, learning disabilities, challenges, biology, behavior, and how IF we can reorient the ways in which all we think about diversity, abilities, and disabilities, we CAN start a revolution.

Dr. Dan and Jonathan discuss some of Jonathan’s challenges (including anxiety, dyslexia and suicidal thoughts) and have a moving discussion about how to support neurodiverse individuals, including–

  • Active Learning
  • Different Ways to Share Information 
  • Inclusive Environments
  • Why Every Individual needs to hear “You are not the problem!” 

Jonathan tells Dr. Dan one thing parents can do today to help their neurodiverse son or daughter and then shares a very personal Parent Footprint moment.

Jonathan Mooney’s books are considered foundational texts in the disability rights movement, the inclusive education movement, and the learning revolution and are used in undergraduate and graduate programs at universities and colleges across the country including Harvard’s Graduate School of Education and Teachers College, Columbia University. For more information about Jonathan’s revolutionary work and advocacy please visit:  https://www.jonathanmooney.com/ .

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