“Take this obstacle and make it the reason to have a big life.”
Orlando Bloom is well known for his acting roles in box office hits such as Pirates of the Caribbean and The Lord of the Rings. With all of his success, it may be hard to comprehend that he has struggled with dyslexia throughout his life. However, Orlando’s success was more likely due to dyslexia rather than in spite of it.
He struggled at school because of his dyslexia. “It was a struggle. It was a lot of work,” Bloom told the audience at Rockefeller University. “I had to work three times as hard to get two-thirds of the way. I was frustrated with that learning disability. It makes you feel stupid.”
It was a blessing when at the age of seven, Orlando was diagnosed with dyslexia. He was also told he had a high IQ score, which made him realise he wasn’t ‘dumb’.
One talent associated with dyslexia is the ability to perceive the world from different perspectives and in creative ways. This manifests itself in many ways – in Bloom’s case it was acting, and it was apparent from an early age. He has used his tremendous talent to become a highly successful actor and producer, starring in the Pirates of The Caribbean films; The Lord of the Rings Trilogy; Troy; and The Three Musketeers, just to name a few.
On dyslexia, Bloom explains that, “it is not something that ever goes away. But you learn how to manage it. He doesn’t see dyslexia as a problem, but instead a gift — a special club. “It’s not a disability; it’s a challenge,” he said. “Even an opportunity.”
Hear Orlando talk about his dyslexia – and advice for others that have are dyslexic here.