Rachel N. Wants You to Be a ‘Just Right’ Type of Person

Meet the perpetually-perfecting, full-spectrum-love-freeing, Betty-White-admiring, psychology-mastering Rachel N.

Updated:

This interview with Rachel is part of The Unfollowables Series.

The goal of this series is to help you find actionable ideas and inspiration from others’ most extraordinary experiences.

Three of my favorite takeaways from Rachel are:

  1. How to turn your “disabilities” into strengths and a source of purpose.
  2. Refocus from your goals to being the type of person who achieves them.
  3. Ask yourself, “What is my ‘just right’ level of effort?”

1. 👣 Life Story

Q: What’s your life story so far, told as briefly as you can?

I was born in 1995 in Los Angeles, California to a lawyer and graphic designer. I was very close to my maternal grandfather when I was younger, but also had a babysitter who was abusive to me, starting when I was three years old, and continuing until I was 11. I was diagnosed with autism at age 4, and started attending a public elementary school shortly afterwards. This was where I met my one-on-one assistant, who I was also very close to, and worked with me until I graduated from elementary school in 2006. I started going to a special needs school in 2007, and am currently writing a fictionalized story about it. My experience there was mixed; a lot of the male students there were attracted to me, but I was also slut-shamed by some of my fellow students and even some of my teachers there! Nonetheless, I won prom queen and graduated in 2013, when I started going to community college, then I transferred to university in 2017, where I got my bachelor’s degree in 2020, and I’m currently working towards a master’s degree in psychology!

2. ❄️ Quirks

Q: What fun facts and/or quirky things make you you?

I’m autistic (as mentioned earlier) and also a recovering serial dater (most people don’t associate these two things with each other!). As a result, I feel like part of my calling is to help other people on the autism spectrum be more comfortable and empowered sexually—in other words, to be the sexual mentor that I wish I had growing up as a teenager.

Other fun facts about me:

  • I’m part Costa Rican, and a distant relative of former Costa Rican Vice President Luis Liberman!
  • I practice divination, with my favorite form being charm reading! (Look up Charmed Intuition Tarot on YouTube—that’s where I first learned how to charm read and create my own charm box!)

3. ✊ Mission

Q: How are you trying to make the world a slightly better place?

As mentioned earlier, I’m trying to make the world a better place for people on the autism spectrum, especially when it comes to their love and sex lives, since I felt like I didn’t get much support in that area when I was a teenager myself.

In addition, I automatically donate $30 a month to the national alliance to end homelessness to level out the economic playing field in the United States, where I currently live.

4. 🦸‍♂️ Role Model

Q: Whose life do you look up to?

Betty White, because she was lovable and virtuous.

YouTube video

5. ⚡️ Huge Zag

Q: What’s one of the most impactful zags (proactive changes to your life’s path) you’ve made?

Starting my personal development journey at age 14, after I had gone through a major mental breakdown and extremely rough year for me prior to that.

My breakdown started with the death of my maternal grandfather, who I was very close to, as mentioned. Shortly after his death, I was diagnosed with ADHD and was experimenting with a cocktail of medications for it and my other mental health conditions/symptoms (autism, depression, anxiety) until I found a combination that worked for me in late 2012. I also started high school during that time, and had some very rough teachers compared to most of the ones I had previously in my schooling. In addition, I had a major crush on this guy who wasn’t good for me, and he ended up sleeping with my then-best friend at the end of the school year—with my best friend having lied to me about being a lesbian previously! (Yes, I’m writing another fictionalized account of this as well!)

I was so distraught by all of these events that I nearly committed suicide… until I realized that I had my whole life ahead of me, and therefore, much more that I wanted to accomplish in life that I hadn’t yet. I decided to figure out how I was not only going to achieve these goals, but to become the type of person who would achieve them—a very different person from who I was at the time.

I wouldn’t say I’m super close to being that type of person yet, but I’d definitely say I’m much closer than I was when I was 14.

6. 👀 Life-Changing Learning

Q: Can you share a source of information (book, podcast, video, etc.) that pushed you to take action that improved your life?

Thinkertoys by Michael Michalko, because it taught me that creativity is a skill that anyone can learn!

7. 🔬 Curiosity

Q: What are you currently excited to learn more about?

How to balance focus and flexibility mentally in my day-to-day life, since I feel like there should be more books on the topic, if any already exist.

8. 😰 Struggle

Q: What are you currently struggling with? How might the person reading this help you?

I’m currently struggling with trying to stay focused on what matters most to me. I consume a lot of self-help content, yet with my ADHD, I often have a hard time filtering through it and taking action on it consistently, since there is a lot of information on the topic out there, and some of it can be contradictory!

9. 🥊 Disagreement

Q: What might you and the person reading this disagree about?

Prostitution should be legalized, as long as it’s regulated (all prostitutes must be of legal age in the country they work in, and must be tested for STIs before working).

10. 🙃 Unusual Practice

Q: Do you have any unusual practices that you think more people would benefit from trying?

Living your own perpetually perfect day!

(Yes, I admit, I did the exercise from The Zag, and it’s truly been a game-changer for me. Thank you, Chris!)

My perpetually perfect day looks something like this:

  • Write down a decision I need to make or a problem I need to solve in my notebook, then take a walk around my house for 20 minutes to mull it over. (And hopefully, come up with an answer or solution.)
  • Read a book in an area I’ve been struggling in yesterday by an author who I can relate to in some way for 30 minutes.
  • Do my homework for grad school for 3 hours, with a 15-minute break in between. (So I can eventually become a mental health professional.)
  • Text someone I know who is successful in an area I’ve been struggling in lately, and is also someone whose company I enjoy.
  • Ask myself a question starting with the words, “I wonder…?”, then follow that curiosity by taking action on it.
  • Write in my journal for 10 minutes using a prompt from the Brainsparker app for ideas.

11. 👍 Wonderful Thing

Q: What’s something you own that, if you lost it, you would rebuy the exact same model without looking at alternatives?

My black Rebecca Minkoff ballet flats (I actually own two pairs, I believe!)

12. 👊 Challenge to Readers

Q: What one thing do you challenge the person reading this to try this week?

To experiment with living their perpetually perfect day!

13. 🎤 Question for Readers

Q: What would you most like to get an honest, unbiased answer to from the person reading this?

Are you trying too hard, too soft, or just right in life right now? And how can you get closer to trying “just right”, starting right now?


Before You Go

  1. Keep following Rachel’s “unfollowable” journey on her blog, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and YouTube. And learn more about her from this video.
  2. Subscribe the get future Unfollowables interviews in your inbox.
  3. Get featured. Send me an email at c at thezag.com saying “I’m interested in being featured in The Unfollowables.”

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👋 I'm Chris. Everything you read on TheZag.com is my fault. This site is like a gym for your comfort zone, full of challenges to make your status quo sexier. Join my 'Consider This' newsletter for a fun new challenge every 10 days. Try it!

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