97 Temple Grandin Quotes on Autism and Animals

Temple Grandin, an autistic American scientist born in 1947, overcame early communication challenges to excel in academia.

With degrees from Franklin Pierce College, Arizona State University and the University of Illinois, she began teaching at Colorado State University in 1990.

Grandin is renowned for associating the anxieties of autism with those of animals. In high school, she designed a “squeeze machine” to alleviate tension, inspired by livestock equipment.

Image Credit: TEDx

Her distinct cerebellar structure, while limiting her short-term memory, boosted her visual memory, which she leveraged to develop compassionate livestock handling systems that minimize animal distress.

Besides her innovations, Grandin authored several books, discussing her autism journey and animal behavior insights.

Let’s check out some of the most inspirational quotes by Temple Grandin.

Temple Grandin Quotes on Autism


Autism is an extremely variable disorder. ~ Temple Grandin.


I like to figure things out and solve problems. ~ Temple Grandin.


You can’t punish a child who is acting out because of sensory overload. ~ Temple Grandin.


Animals make us Human. ~ Temple Grandin.


I am a big believer in early intervention. ~ Temple Grandin.


You simply cannot tell other people they are stupid, even if they really are stupid. ~ Temple Grandin.

My name is Temple Grandin. I’m not like other people. I think in pictures and I connect them. ~ Temple Grandin.


My life is basically my work. ~ Temple Grandin.

From a scientific standpoint, Aspergers and autism are one syndrome. Aspergers is part of the autism spectrum, not a separate disorder. ~ Temple Grandin.

I cannot emphasize enough the importance of a good teacher. ~ Temple Grandin.


You can be honest without sharing your opinions on everything. ~ Temple Grandin.

I’m a visual thinker, not a language-based thinker. My brain is like Google Images. ~ Temple Grandin.

One of my sensory problems was hearing sensitivity, where certain loud noises, such as a school bell, hurt my ears. It sounded like a dentist drill going through my ears. ~ Temple Grandin.

Unfortunately, most people never observe the natural cycle of birth and death. They do not realize that for one living thing to survive, another living thing must die. ~ Temple Grandin.

Best Temple Grandin Quotes

I can remember the frustration of not being able to talk. I knew what I wanted to say, but I could not get the words out, so I would just scream. ~ Temple Grandin.


My Advice is: You always have to keep persevering. ~ Temple Grandin.

I strongly recommend that students with autism get involved in special interest clubs in some of the areas they naturally excel at. Being with people who share your interests makes socializing easier. ~ Temple Grandin.

I don’t want my thoughts to die with me, I want to have done something. I’m not interested in power, or piles of money. I want to leave something behind. I want to make a positive contribution – know that my life has meaning. ~ Temple Grandin.

Research has shown that a barren environment is much more damaging to baby animals than it is to adult animals. It does not hurt the adult animals the same way it damages babies. ~ Temple Grandin.


The Internet may be the best thing yet for improving an autistic person’s social life. ~ Temple Grandin.

What would happen if the autism gene was eliminated from the gene pool? You would have a bunch of people standing around in a cave, chatting and socializing and not getting anything done. ~ Temple Grandin.

Nature is cruel but we don’t have to be. ~ Temple Grandin.

A treatment method or an educational method that will work for one child may not work for another child. The one common denominator for all of the young children is that early intervention does work, and it seems to improve the prognosis. ~ Temple Grandin.

I’m seeing too many smart kind of socially awkward kids, a lot milder than I was, not getting employment because they’re not learning job skills. ~ Temple Grandin.


In a noisy place I can’t understand speech, because I cannot screen out the background noise. ~ Temple Grandin.

The thing about being autistic is that you gradually get less and less autistic, because you keep learning, you keep learning how to behave. It’s like being in a play; I’m always in a play. ~ Temple Grandin.

Famous Temple Grandin Quotes

In fact, there are autism clusters, you know, around some of the big tech centers. You take two socially awkward computer programmers and put them together, that can kind of concentrate the autistic genes. ~ Temple Grandin.

Teachers who work with autistic children need to understand associative thought patterns. ~ Temple Grandin.

I think sometimes parents and teachers fail to stretch kids. My mother had a very good sense of how to stretch me just slightly outside my comfort zone. ~ Temple Grandin.


I obtain great satisfaction out of using my intellect. ~ Temple Grandin.

When you’re a weird geek, the way to sell yourself is to show your skills. ~ Temple Grandin.

The squeeze machine is not going to cure anybody, but it may help them relax; and a relaxed person will usually have better behavior. ~ Temple Grandin.

As you may know, some of the stereotyped behaviors exhibited by autistic children are also found in zoo animals who are raised in a barren environment. ~ Temple Grandin.

Top Temple Grandin Quotes

Who do you think made the first stone spears? The Asperger guy. If you were to get rid of all the autism genetics, there would be no more Silicon Valley. ~ Temple Grandin.

I think that autistic brains tend to be specialized brains. Autistic people tend to be less social. It takes a ton of processor space in the brain to have all the social circuits. ~ Temple Grandin.


The world needs all types of minds. ~ Temple Grandin.

Social thinking skills must be directly taught to children and adults with ASD. Doing so opens doors of social understandings in all areas of life. ~ Temple Grandin.

In the 50s and 60s, kids were taught how to shake hands. They were taught how to have manners. There needs to be a lot more of that kind of stuff because the autistic mind doesn’t pick up social things and subtle cues. ~ Temple Grandin.

One of the things I want to do is be a decent role model. I’ve got a lot of emails and stuff from children. They look up to me. Kids get different labels and things like that and I want those kids to succeed. ~ Temple Grandin.

I know a number of autistic adults that are doing extremely well on Prozac. ~ Temple Grandin.

What I’ve tried to do is combine both my personal experiences with scientific research. I like to cross the divide between the personal world and the scientific world. ~ Temple Grandin.

Popular Temple Grandin Quotes

If by some magic, autism had been eradicated from the face of the Earth, then men would still be socializing in front of a wood fire at the entrance to a cave. ~ Temple Grandin.

In college I did a lot of talking out loud because it helped me organize my thinking. A lot of autistic people talk out loud for the same reason. ~ Temple Grandin.


If I did not have my work, I would not have my life. ~ Temple Grandin.

When you take a drug to treat high blood pressure or diabetes, you have an objective test to measure blood pressure and the amount of sugar in the blood. It is straight-forward. With autism, you are looking for changes in behavior. ~ Temple Grandin.

Engineering is easy – it’s the people problems that are hard. ~ Temple Grandin.

I can remember being bullied and teased. It was absolutely horrible. I got kicked out of ninth grade for throwing a book at a girl who teased me. It was absolutely terrible. ~ Temple Grandin.


I use my mind to solve problems and invent things. ~ Temple Grandin.

What do I do when I go home? Work. That’s basically my social life. I’m married to work. ~ Temple Grandin.

And while we are on the subject of medication you always need to look at risk versus benefit. ~ Temple Grandin.

We have got to work on keeping these children engaged with the world. ~ Temple Grandin.

Powerful Temple Grandin Quotes

I believe there is a reason such as autism, severe manic-depression, and schizophrenia remain in our gene pool even though there is much suffering as a result. ~ Temple Grandin.


Curiosity is the other side of caution. ~ Temple Grandin.

Neuroanatomy isn’t destiny. Neither is genetics. They don’t define who you will be. But they do define who you might be. They define who you can be. ~ Temple Grandin.

I think a brain can be made more thinking or made more emotional. ~ Temple Grandin. At what point does this become abnormal? Autism in its milder variants, I think, is part of normal human variation. ~ Temple Grandin.

In dealing with autism, I’m certainly not saying we should lose sight of the need to work on deficits, But the focus on deficits is so intense and so automatic that people lose sight of the strengths. ~ Temple Grandin.

I’m seeing too many geeky, nerdy kids get addicted to video games and they’re going nowhere. It’s making me crazy. ~ Temple Grandin.

If you start using a medication in a person with autism, you should see an obvious improvement in behavior in a short period of time. If you do not see an obvious improvement, they probably should not be taking the stuff. It is that simple. ~ Temple Grandin.

People need to learn how to work, learn how to support themselves. I think it’s just fine to be eccentric. ~ Temple Grandin.

People are always looking for the single magic bullet that will totally change everything. There is no single magic bullet. ~ Temple Grandin.

Profound Temple Grandin Quotes

When I was younger, I didn’t even realize the way I think visually is different. ~ Temple Grandin.


Half of Silicon Valley’s got a little bit of autism. ~ Temple Grandin.

The people that were socially awkward from my generation, they all had paper routes and that taught them the discipline of work. ~ Temple Grandin.

Sometimes you have to go outside your field of study to find the right people. ~ Temple Grandin.

Sometimes we forget about common sense. Autism is used too much as an excuse for bad behavior. ~ Temple Grandin.

I think that the definition of autism is too broad. You got to remember, autism definition is a behavioral profiling. ~ Temple Grandin.

If I could snap my fingers and be non-autistic, I would not. Autism is part of what I am. ~ Temple Grandin.

The most important thing people did for me was to expose me to new things. ~ Temple Grandin.

Autism’s an important part of who I am, but I’m a college professor and an animal scientist first. And I wouldn’t want to change ’cause I like the logical way I think. ~ Temple Grandin.

Seeking is a combination of emotions people usually think of as being different: wanting something really good, looking forward to getting something really good and curiosity. Seeking gives you the energy to go after your goals. ~ Temple Grandin.


I am different, not less. ~ Temple Grandin.

People are getting too far away from the real-world. Politics is just ridiculous, it’s totally dysfunctional. ~ Temple Grandin.

Thought-Provoking Temple Grandin Quotes

All animals and people have the same core emotion systems in the brain. ~ Temple Grandin.


If you have autism in the family history, you still vaccinate. Delay it a bit, space them out. ~ Temple Grandin.

Language for me narrates the pictures in my mind. When I work on designing livestock equipment I can test run that equipment in my head like 3-D virtual reality. In fact, when I was in college I used to think that everybody was able to do that. ~ Temple Grandin.

It is never too late to expand the mind of a person on the autism spectrum. ~ Temple Grandin.

For me and other people on the autism spectrum, sensory experiences that have little or no effect on neurotypical people can be severe life stressors for us. Loud noises hurt my ears like a dentist’s drill hitting a nerve. For. ~ Temple Grandin.

Some teachers just have a knack for working with autistic children. Other teachers do not have it. ~ Temple Grandin.

My mind works like Google for images. You put in a key word; it brings up pictures. ~ Temple Grandin.


Pressure is calming to the nervous system. ~ Temple Grandin.

When kids are really little, they all look the same. No speech, no social relatedness, cannot emphasize enough the importance of early educational intervention. ~ Temple Grandin.

When I was younger I was looking for this magic meaning of life. It’s very simple now. Making the lives of others better, doing something of lasting value. That’s the meaning of life, it’s that simple. ~ Temple Grandin.

I get satisfaction out of seeing stuff that makes real change in the real world. We need a lot more of that and a lot less abstract stuff. ~ Temple Grandin.

Some children may need a behavioral approach, whereas other children may need a sensory approach. ~ Temple Grandin.

People talk about curing autism. But if you got rid of all those traits, who’s going to make the next computer? ~ Temple Grandin.

Animals do have emotions. But fear tends to be one of the most primal emotions. ~ Temple Grandin.

Eye contact is still difficult for me in noisy rooms because it interferes with hearing. It’s like my brain’s wiring lets only one sense function or the other, but sometimes not both at the same time. In noisy rooms, I have to concentrate on hearing. ~ Temple Grandin.


The world needs different kinds of minds to work together. ~ Temple Grandin.

There needs to be a lot more emphasis on what a child CAN do, instead of what he cannot do. ~ Temple Grandin.

So these were the 97 top quotes about Temple Grandin.

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on John Gotti quotes and Carl Rogers quotes.

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Chandan Negi
Chandan Negi

I’m the Founder of Internet Pillar - I love sharing quotes and motivational content to inspire and motivate people - #quotes #motivation #internetpillar