Why do we need reasons or facts to be more positive about stuttering?
Because stuttering itself is involuntary speech impediments with some negative feeling attached to it.
No matter how you define freedom from stuttering - "how to stop stuttering" or "how to overcome stuttering" or just how to be bold and confident and just free to do whatever you want with your life so that stuttering doesn't define you and doesn't hold you back, in any case, you want to address this huge invisible part of stuttering.
So, I'd love to share with you 10 stuttering facts that will help you rethink your attitude towards stuttering and become more positive about stuttering, speaking interaction and yourself.
Let's dive into it.
Pretty much all great products, inventions, and creative works of art came out of a problem. Either as a solution to the problem or as creative juice produced by dealing with the problem or living with a problem.
And stuttering brings quite a puzzle to solve.
Besides the physical part (speech impediments) which we can choose to work on or not to work on we all can agree that stuttering brings a huge invisible part - the stuttering shame, stuttering fear and anxiety, avoidance, escaping, isolation sometimes, hesitation, and generally holding back.
And we definitely don't want to let stuttering define us, prescribe us what to do and what not to do. We don't want to live in a box. We don't want to bear the burden of those limitations. We want to be free from those limitations.
Let's acknowledge that. It already creates some direction, drive, passion.
We already have a dream in and of itself.
And many "regular" people don't have a dream. Just leaving their days in and out.
So, let's see that drive and passion inside us. That's a gift given to us with a problem. With a problem to solve.
Getting free from limitations that stuttering brings - it's not just a dream, but a dream to change ourselves. That’s huge. Not that many people have a dream to change something in themselves.
The "usual" dreams people have are more about the “outside” world - get and keep something (that girl, that guy, that car, that house, that number of followers, that number in the bank account, etc.)
While we also have the "usual" goals and dreams I want you to see that internal drive in yourself, see and acknowledge it. Don't run away from it.
"But isn't personal development for broken or weak people?"
No! Personal change is not for people who are “inferior” or “limited” or “not good enough.” It’s for people who are strong enough for a change. Who are strong enough to be open for new.
So, tap into that inner drive and passion, visualize what kind of person you want to be. And go for it!
Well, we're in good company as you can see.
Here are just some of the people who stutter that you might have heard of:
Actors: Marilyn Monroe, Julia Roberts, Emily Blunt, Bruce Willis
Politicians and orators: Demosthenes, Thomas Jefferson, Winston Churchill, Joe Biden
Athletes: Ben Johnson, Shaquille O’Neal, Tiger Woods
Writers: Aesop, Miguel de Cervantes, Lewis Carroll
Scientists: Aristotle, Charles Darwin, Isaac Newton
Singers: Elvis Presley, Kylie Minogue, Ed Sheeran
Stuttering didn't stop them not because they were just born great, but because they worked on their dreams.
Sometimes stuttering might seem super huge like it's everywhere. Wherever I go I see that wall in front of me!
And even though I'm preaching about speaking exercises, building the training speech and working on the physical part of stuttering (because we can do a lot about it), the number one remedy to that huge invisible part of stuttering and stuttering in general is finding something that you love doing and doing something that you love.
When you stutter and you meet another person who stutters you feel that instant bond, that secret connection that you rarely instantly feel with other "regular" people.
Don't run away. Cherish that feeling. Cherish that connection.
1) Join stuttering support groups on Facebook. Here are some of them:
2) Participate in National Stuttering Association conferences
3) Join Free From Stutter Speaking Club
Feel that you're not alone. There are many awesome people who stutter. You can make new friends, elevate your energy, and just learn a lot - how other people are living with stuttering, are dealing with stuttering, are overcoming stuttering - whichever you choose.
Stuttering makes us vulnerable. We open up, we kind of get naked at that point, open for judgment, ridicule, and compassion.
And the natural feeling is that we don't want to be vulnerable, we don't want to be naked, we don't want to be open for that judgment and ridicule.
So, our natural urge is to run away and hide in some secure box, shell, space.
Yet, I want you to recognize, to see that being vulnerable and feeling good about your vulnerability, opening up and feeling good about yourself is one of the most valuable skills.
When you're vulnerable, open, and true that's the real ground, the real foundation for true relationships to build. And embracing vulnerability is the key to success in pretty much any area of our life.
Many people who stutter are so-called "highly sensitive people."
And even if you don't define yourself as a highly sensitive person chances are you feel, you sense things a little faster, a little deeper, a little more than "regular" people.
It's like you know when people have one sense impaired other senses develop a little more to compensate that sense which is impaired. The same thing happens with stuttering - maybe we don't speak that much but we compensate that in general with seeing a little further and feeling a little deeper.
And humbleness might seem again like a weakness. We all like strong and confident guys like James Bond.
Yet, when it comes to true relationships, when it comes to building something like a company, product, or business or being a true leader we're looking for people who are strong but humble.
When you reach some level of success it's easy to get cocky or just stop. Being humble is a great quality that helps us stay hungry, keep learning and moving forward.
You might say, "Man, you're mentioning all those great people, those leaders, those scientists, politicians, sportsmen, actors. I'm not like that, I'm just me."
But that's the whole point - we find greatness in small things. Asking a stranger directions, raising hand in class, making a phone call, approaching somebody who you're hesitant to approach, going for the speech therapy - all these might not seem like a big deal for "regular" people but for us, these are acts of greatness.
I can totally say that for myself and I do see that in other people who stutter as well.
And even though I'm shooting all these videos and trying to be more extroverted I'm proud to be an introvert because truth be told a pearl can grow only in a closed shell. It just doesn't grow in the open sea or under the sun on the beach.
The same way I would encourage you to find that inner space and grow something beautiful there.
You see, "regular" people also hold back, they also have fears, they also have anxiety, they also have all the limitations that we have.
Stuttering in this sense is a gift because it makes that holding back visible.
Stuttering makes us, forces us to work on that huge iceberg, on those limitations, invisible limitations, on our fears, on our anxiety, on our self-esteem, on our confidence, on our holding back while "regular" people can live their whole life not bothering, not seeing that they are holding back, they don't see oftentimes those limitations which hold them back the same way as stuttering holds us back.
Yes, it's a puzzle to solve but if you're solving it, if you're becoming more open, active and positive about speaking interaction and yourself, and there are clearly ways how to do that, if you solve this problem you can solve any problem in your life, you gain an invaluable skill of overcoming your limitations.
That's a skill. And like any skill, that's something we can learn step by step.
Thank you so much for staying in touch!
Please let me know what you think! Leave a comment!
If you are a person who stutters and you're not quite satisfied with how you feel at the moment of speaking interaction and if you want to go deeper into what we can do about stuttering I invite you to my free Improve Training - 10 Immediate Steps I challenge you to take right now!
And for more interaction join the Free From Stutter Facebook group. It’s crucial not to stay isolated, it’s vital to feel you’re part of the community!
If you have thoughts or observations, anything that comes to your mind - let me know in the comments!
Thank you so much! See you soon!