Autistic Inertia (Understanding Autism)

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Learn more about inertia here!

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Understanding Autism

Autistic Inertia

Autistic Inertia is when you get “stuck” – either doing something, or doing nothing, and you struggle to move on to the next task


Autistic Inertia can be related to executive functioning, movement initiation, and socio-emotional factors.

It’s difficulty with starting a task from nothing (e.g. getting up from bed to use the toilet), or from a different task (e.g. stopping playing a game to get a drink).


Lazy: feels good!

Unwilling to use energy.

Will use energy if put under enough pressure, e.g. signals from the body to use the toilet are enough to make you go and use the toilet.


Inertia: feels bad!

Unable to use energy.

Unable to start or change task despite high pressure, e.g. pain, hunger, need to use the bathroom, negative consequences of inaction.

Source: Buckle et al, 2021

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