When talking, is your mind bombarded, confused and stressed?
Find out why that is true and how you can change that!
Imagine that you are ready to speak and you know exactly what you want to say. But you aren’t sure that what you want to say will come out fluently. You scan your thoughts — are there any words that are difficult for you to say? Better switch those words to other words that you know you can say smoothly. Hopefully, this will still sound intelligent.
How is your anxiety level? Should you think about being more calm and relaxed? That will help you speak more easily.
You have a preplanned technique ready just in case you block and can’t say a word. You don’t know if this is going to happen or not, but you need to be ready just in case.
PWS often say that they don’t know when they will stutter. However, if they are cautious and over-prepared, it somehow seems safer. This preparation and cautiousness in getting ready to speak can be mentally overwhelming, encumbering and exhausting. This makes speaking very taxing. Limiting what you say or not speaking at all is easier for the short term. Not a long-term option, though.
Is Expressing Your Thoughts, for Women Who Stutter, Filled With Obstacles?
Here are some ways that Your Habit of Stuttering is Eroding Your Confidence
The Habit of Stuttering prevents:
- The natural rhythm and flow of spoken conversation where ideas are exchanged spontaneously, thoughts are insightful, concepts emerge and speaking is easy.
- Prevents you from building and growing your self-confidence; using and sharing your knowledge, skills and personality in all aspects of life.
- You from fueling your self-worth and determination, moving out of your comfort zone, and discovering that your fears, hesitations and anxieties are insignificant when you are in your power.
- Sharp focus and clear expression of your thoughts, ideas and questions, thus avoiding the bombardment of confusion in your mind.
- You from being authentically you, finding your unique path, uncovering what is beneath your quiet and unobtrusive mask and opening you up to share your experiences, opinions and personality.
Inside Your Fluent Mind, For Women Who Stutter
Would You Like to Experiment With Your Fluency?
To begin, know that speaking is designed to be very simple. You have a thought and then you speak that thought. There is really nothing else in between – no fear about what to say or how it will come out, no scanning for hard words or sounds, no anxiety about what anyone else will think if you do stutter.
Ready For The Experiment?
First, think of the hardest thing for you to say, the words that cause you the most angst. Maybe it is your address.
Second, hear yourself say your address in your mind. Don’t use voice, just hear the words for your complete address in your head. Slowly and clearly, hear each word, street, city, province, postal code. If your sense of sight is stronger, you can imagine your address printed on paper, on a wall or even on the other person’s face ?. Repeat twice.
Third, say your full address, without any voice. Move your articulators (mouth, jaw, tongue, lips) to say your address. Repeat twice.
Fourth, using a soft whisper, say your full address. Repeat twice.
Notice the relaxation in your mouth, jaw, neck and shoulders.
Notice the calmness in your mind.
Take note of how the thought of your address smoothly moves to whispered speech.
Go For It — There is Nothing To Lose
Try this experiment with other difficult words and phrases e.g. your name, the make and model of your car etc.
This experiment gives you a chance to experience what it feels like to say these words, words that are often required in demanding situations.
You build your confidence with every step, every time you achieve fluency and success.
Linda Hurkot is a communication enhancement ambassador for People Who Stutter, specializing in women who stutter. Linda helps professional women who stutter integrate speech into a natural way of communicating with a proprietary program called, The Easy Speaking for Stutterers’ program. You can take a sneak peek