A key to dealing with chronic stuttering is to understand that it is part of a Syndrome (viz Stuttered Speech Syndrome) and that the mechanics of speech production are linked to emotions and attitudes. This is not to say stuttering is necessarily caused by faulty emotions and attitudes but that if you are to change speaking behaviour (overcome stutering), then emotions and attitudes also have to change.
To decrease stuttering behaviour it is necessary to reassess emotions and attitudes. The important point is that the Social Anxiety Disorder component of Stuttered Speech Syndrome can be successfully treated with cognitive-behavioural therapy (see below). When this occurs a significant burden is removed from the life of a person who stutters. In addition the removal of the extensive yet irrational fear around stuttering helps the speaker concentrate on developing new speaking habits. For those who fear stuttering, anxiety reduction in social situations is a vital first step.
How to Reduce Anxiety in Social Situations and Change Self-Image as a Speaker. (How to deal with Social Anxiety Disorder)
- meditation and self hypnosis
- monitor resting anxiety level
- keep a speaking journal and record successes
- practice in a “winning environment”
- join a support group
- develop a sense of humour about stuttering
- concentrate on what you can do well in the communication process.
- positive replay (after any negative experiences)
- become more assertive
- don’t be afraid to voluntarily stutter (face the fear)
More details at http://stutteredspeechsyndrome.com/about/personal-story/
How to improve speech fluency
- slow down rate
- link words
- ensure adequate breath support for every phrase (assisted by speaking in 5 to 6 word phrases.)
- introduce rhythm to speech by increasing intonation (ie. add music to voice)