Productive Flourishing
Productive Flourishing
Episode 45 - Different is Awesome with Ryan Haack

Episode 45 - Different is Awesome with Ryan Haack

Ryan Haack is an author, blogger, and speaker who was born without a left hand. In 2011, he launched his website,, in an effort to help people embrace the things that make them different and realize that they are still valuable and important. He writes about his experiences as someone who was born with a physical difference and tries to give hope to others who may be dealing with the same kind of thing. He also speaks at schools on this subject and recently released his first children’s book titled Different is Awesome. Ryan joins Charlie on the show today to discuss his work and his perspective on what it means to be different as well as much more.

Key Takeaways:

01:31 – Why and how Ryan started his website back in 2011.

04:06 – Ryan going most of his life not even thinking about the fact that he only had one hand and then suddenly being more aware of it after starting his website.

08:43 – What Ryan’s arm looks like and why he is so comfortable talking about it.

13:18 – Always thinking people want to help you because they pity you and not viewing it as them just being nice and accept it.

18:32 – The dual nature of saying you’re not any different than anybody else when you have a disability but also bringing awareness to the fact that you are different.

21:49 – Ryan’s Kickstarter for his book.

28:20 – The message of Ryan’s book.

31:45 – Seeing the value in yourself will make you see the value in other people.

33:56 – Ryan hopes that people will feel encouraged and valuable because of the work he is doing.

Mentioned in This Episode:

Different Is Awesome


W.E.B. Du Bois

Brené Brown

Glenda Watson Hyatt

The Art of Asking, Amanda Palmer


Kyle Maynard

Judith Caseley, Harry and Willy and Carrothead

Wes Molebash

Kyle Scheele


Sleeping at Last, Ryan O’Neal

Productive Flourishing
Productive Flourishing
Productive Flourishing (formerly the Creative Giant Show) explores how to do the work that matters to become your best self in the world. Host Charlie Gilkey and occasional co-host Angela Wheeler take listeners on a deep dive into the lives of leaders, changemakers, creatives, and entrepreneurs who are thriving in life and business by doing work that matters. Listen in to see how they cultivate meaning, success, and happiness as well as their approach to productivity, business, health, and the challenges (yes, even the deep, dark ones) that show up in their lives.