How to stop stuttering. Mistake #3 - trying to control your speech.

Stuttering is an iceberg with speech impediments on top of it, that’s something we all see. And the body of the iceberg holds our fears, shame and desire to hide the impediment.

The first 2 massive mistakes we're making ("Sitting in the shell" and "Pretending to be normal") - that’s the core of that iceberg.

Now, it’s time to talk about the massive mistake we’re making when addressing the speech impediments, the very top of the iceberg.  

The VIDEO: How to Stop Stuttering. Mistake #3 - trying to control your speech.

How to stop stuttering. Mistake #3 - trying to control your speech.

When we get practical and start talking about the impediments, we wait for a magic trick to be revealed.

Getting free from stuttering is like learning a foreign language - it takes time and consistent effort. We usually don't expect to learn a foreign language by learning some trick, right? Why do we want to get free from stuttering by discovering a magic trick then?

So there’s no trick, but there’s a technique and we’ll talk about it.

To begin with, our speech is highly automated. That’s something we want to realize.

Imagine you’re playing tennis. Your partner serves and you’re rushing to send the ball back. So when you approach that little fuzzy ball how much of your effort is automated and how much of it can you control? Well, you don’t control it much, maybe you control 5%, maybe 10%, but the truth is it’s mostly automated, it’s mostly all that you’ve learned before.We all know that it’s easier to learn from scratch than try to learn when you already got

We all know that it’s easier to learn from scratch than try to learn when you already got a wrong pattern.

Now, we already have our impediments, blocks, prolongations, and repetitions. Here’s some to heredity, some to the background, the environment, I’m leaving the topic of causes of stuttering aside. We’re somehow predisposed for that, that’s part of our nature.

So that’s an automated pattern that we’ve built and that we have now.

How much of it do we control? Maybe 5 or 10%.

When we do speech exercises we mostly affect these 5 or 10%. When we try to control our speech if fact we control only that tiny part that we can control.

But we have the roots of our speech. And it’s highly automated and it highly reflects the environment we’re in. If we go from the comfort of the room where we get the therapy to our high-pressure everyday environment, in other words to the situation where we don’t control it much, where it goes mostly automatically, we reproduce automatically that speech that we had in such environment. We’re reproducing our automated stuttering pattern. We come back to the place where we had been before.

That means that our speaking goes largely irrespective of all our efforts to control it.  

Just let it sink into your mind really. I don’t mean the content, the words, the meaning that we put there, but speaking as a process goes largely, I would say mostly, irrespective of all our efforts to control it.

So the idea is that we want to build a new automated speech pattern free from stuttering, rather than try to control our speech while we’re speaking.

How do we do that?

I’m not going to overwhelm you with science and research, but there’s a certain connection between motor skills and development of speech. Those kids who advance in developing their fine motor skills do much better in developing their speaking skills.

There’s a link between part of the brain that is responsible for our speech and fine motor activities of our hands and fingers.

So in the method I used and in the technique I’m preaching about we synchronize saying sounds and words with movements of fingers. To be more exact we extract sounds with our fingers pressing on a thigh. It can be another part of your body, but a thigh is the most natural one.

The difference with most therapies where we try to control our speech using different tricks and exercises is that by using your hand you make sure that new speaking skills go under your skin and become a new automated pattern and become that 90 % that we don’t control.

So when we try to control our speech in most cases we don’t reach fluency because we don’t develop a new automated pattern.

And that’s the third massive mistake we’re making. We keep staying with the current stuttering pattern. 

But when it comes to fluency we don’t want to rely on controlling something that is supposed to go mostly automatically. What we want to rely on is building a new automated pattern to replace our current stuttering pattern.

If you are a person who stutters, 

and you're not quite satisfied with how you feel at the moment of speaking interaction 

I invite you to my free training where I share my view on getting free from stuttering 

And for more interaction,

join the Free From Stutter Facebook group.

Please, don't stay isolated! It's crucial to feel you’re part of the community!

Read and Watch Next:

How to stop stuttering. Mistake #1 - sitting in the shell.

How to stop stuttering. Mistake #2 - pretending to be normal.

Top 10 speech exercises for stuttering