Reframing autism & Aspergers
About Holly Bridges
Author, teacher and keynote speaker
Holly is the Australian author of ‘Re-frame Your Thinking Around Autism’,
and the creator of A.R.T. – a new and progressive approach to autism therapy.
Holly Bridges lives in Perth, Western Australia and travels regularly to North America and Europe She has a husband, two kids, three chickens, two dogs and two cats in a small house with a large outside living area and a huge garden.
Holly studied Psychology and Women’s studies at ECU then worked as a youth worker and educator before having children – whom she home-schooled whilst intermittently following her husband, with their children, into the depths of the Australian Pilbara (outback), sleeping in swags under the stars and running soil sampling programs.
Holly grew up in WA, the daughter of an Anglican priest father and a feminist theologian mother. Many of her parent’s friends were Jungian analysts and intellectuals and Holly had a great upbringing looking at the world from multiple perspectives.
Her passion is teaching children and adults how to enhance their capacity to learn. She is an author, teacher and keynote speaker.
Holly has had a lifelong passion for neuroplasticity and working with the body/mind. She thrives on making complex psychology simple and available to lay people. This impulse to simplify and convey has taken her on a three-continent journey where she is now a leading light in progressive autism therapy.
Holly won the Excellence In Innovation Award in 2018 for her neuroplasticity work that helps people with disabilities improve their physical and social presentations.
EXCELLENCE IN INNOVATION AWARD, 2018
AUSTRALIAN GOVT (WA) AND NDIS (NATIONAL DISABILITY INSURANCE SCHEME).
She has also been recognised internationally for her book ‘Reframe Your Thinking Around Autism’ which outlines this work.
Commission Secretary Kane Blackman congratulated Ms Bridges on the award and recognised her contribution to people with disabilities and their families.
The Early Years
After graduating from Australia’s ECU with a degree in psychology Holly was employed in private and government organisations, working creatively with disadvantaged youth.
After taking time out of public life to raise and home school her two children, she began writing her first book, ‘The Theory of Post Natal Depression and Intergalactic Space Travel’.
Upon returning full-time to the workplace, she began her business ‘License to Think’ to work with children and young adults using brain plasticity techniques as a therapeutic approach to scholastic/learning difficulties.
Many of her students were on the autism spectrum, and it was at this time that she began creating and refining what would become A.R.T. (Autism Reframe Technique).
The Autism & Asperger's Puzzle
Autism became more and more fascinating to Holly as she came to recognise the syndrome in herself.
It explained, as for so many adult women on the spectrum, her life to date.
This spurred her to dig a bit deeper into the theory, research and therapy practices. She discovered that:
- Current thinking, attitude and opinions did not make any sense.
- Therapies that were being applied to autistic people were not as useful as they could be.
Working With and Supporting Those on the Spectrum
Since then Holly has worked for a leading autism provider – earning her a nomination for the Australian National Disability Awards in 2014 – as well as a Post School Options Coordinator and a Community Inclusion Project Officer as part of Australia’s NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme).
Holly was involved in planning and implementation for NDIS with individual clients and she worked closely with a number of organizations around Australia in ideation and collaboration of ideas for implementing co-design and community inclusion. She developed programs for PSO, ran workshops on co-design and mentored staff. All of this was satisfying, yet there was a yearning for more.
A.R.T. - A New Direction
Holly gained a strong desire to develop a more conducive autism therapy. The idea that autism as a ‘brain deficit’ meant that therapists came hard up against a ‘glass ceiling’ of what could be achieved for people on the spectrum. She also saw just how many people were disenchanted with the current system and how much they needed a more expansive and positive model.
VIDEO: HOLLY BRIDGES AT ASPERGER EXPERTS.
Holly began working privately with people based upon the principles of her book.
- She found that certain techniques were extremely beneficial in helping people on the spectrum feel better in their body and better about themselves.
- The changes that she witnessed were powerful, empowering and most of all developed autonomy and self-confidence in her students.
What people had to say...
Critically Acclaimed Book
What people had to say...
“Through her critically acclaimed book, Holly Bridges has helped thousands of parents, autists, educators and therapists perceive a more positive and helpful way of perceiving autism and she has affected hundreds of families from the severely challenged and non-verbal, to many adults with Asperger’s, right through to the very young with her simple and effective A.R.T. techniques. Her mission is to bring this to the world.”
“Holly introduces a variety of intervention models that potentially could function to rehabilitate the social engagement system and to optimize autonomic regulation”
~ Stephen W. Porges, PhD
Professor of Psychiatry, University of North Carolina
RECONNECTING BRAIN & BODY
“The book enables people with Autism to feel understood and validated about their experience and feelings, and shows a way to tap into the wealth of resources trapped under the surface”
~ Dana, autism employment consultant
I CANNOT THANK YOU ENOUGH
“My son has discovered his feet and now hands. He wiggled his toes on command and just laughed and laughed. I can now say ‘squeeze mummy’s hand’, there is a 3 second delay and then he squeezes”
~ Kieran’s mum, parent