What are you after?

I’d venture to say that those of us who stutter listen to not only what people say, but how they say it a lot more than someone who is fluent. The fluent person will hear the message; we will notice speed, accent, pauses, filler words, word choice and facial expressions.

I say this because in a given office, over the course of a given day, there are a lot of conversations. And we tend to fixate on the people who are the most confident, the fastest, and the most coherent. We want to be them! Our televisions — dramas, comedies, sports commentators — are filled with fast-talking, eloquent people. They barely stumble, they always have something to say, and they never stutter.

But isn’t life on a bell curve?

Listen to everybody else. All the presenters during a team meeting aren’t the best speakers. But they are all communicating. Some are speaking slowly, carefully choosing their words. Others are neither fast nor slow. Some people know how to think on their feet, others don’t.

I’ve often looked at my boss (past and present) to hear how they’re speaking and what they’re saying. I use it to sort of gauge whether or not I’d be able to eventually do that. But that’s not a good approach. Because people around the world have the same title as my boss; I don’t know how they talk. I don’t know how they communicate. And the same for his boss or other senior folks at the office — they have counterparts across the globe who have different ways to speak and still get results.

The point is also that the smoothest talking people aren’t always the ones getting the results. You don’t have to be the most polished speaker to move on and move up. If we stutter, we should continue to work on our acceptance and our message.

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: