Date of Award

Spring 5-16-2020

Document Type


Degree Name

MA - Master of Arts


Expressive Therapies


Donna Owens


This paper presents an original method for young adults with autism spectrum disorders to discover and validate their own strengths. Using the monomyth, participants break down harmful personal mythologies and place themselves on a defined and empowering path towards their goals. Then, using a meditation and body-mapping, explore and express their strengths. The researcher wanted to explore more empowering ways of serving the population that was not focused on deficits. It was important to the researcher to bring things that the participants do well into the awareness of the participants so that they had a strong, positive base while moving forward on their new monomyth. The students were able to connect the monomyth to the stories they are familiar with, and then connect it to where they felt they were in their own lives. They were also able, through guided meditation, to recognize their strengths and identify where in the body they felt those strengths. Participants reported having more direction in their lives and therapeutic journeys because they had the monomyth to look to, as well as being having more confidence in using their strengths in their daily lives after having them reframed as superpowers. The research for people with autism spectrum disorders, primarily focuses on targeting deficits at a younger age, there is more research needed in how to support young adults with autism spectrum disorders in recognizing their strengths as they move into higher education and the work force.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.




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