Author Stephen Hill www.internet-webdesign.co.uk www.stutter-stuttering.com www.stammering-stuttering.co.uk www.lasik-laser-surgery.co.uk
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At age of sixteen I was invited out for evening on a Saturday night to celebrate a friend’s birthday. This for most people would be something to look forward to, for me it was something to dread. Socialising and ordering drinks for somebody who has a stutter is bad enough, but I regularly seemed to bare brunt of evening’s jokes about me height, weight and occasionally my bald patch. Even though my friend’s were not doing this to be cruel, I was very paranoid about myself at that age and this banter would hurt.
I had often been out for evenings where I drank alcohol, however up to this point had never been drunk. On this particular night drink flowed and before long I found myself a little worse for ware. The results of which would later change my life.
I found myself talking to lots of different people, some of which I did not know, even girls! My whole character and personality started to change, I was telling jokes and when someone made a comment about my weight for example, I laughed and even came back with a derogatory comment about him, joining in banter and seemingly enjoying it.
My attitude changed, for example instead of thinking that a certain girl might not want me because of my weight, stutter or height, I thought to myself, she will want me, I’m a good person and could make her laugh. My whole outlook was far more positive and my confidence was buzzing. It was a superb and very enjoyable night.
The next morning I awoke not feeling best with a bad hangover. One of highlights of previous night was that I had been given a phone number from one of girls I had met. I told her that I would phone her to arrange a date, however I was now sober, back to my normal self and no did not have confidence to ring. This girl thinks I am fluent, how would she react if I stutter, I wondered.
I went to bed most disappointed with myself but started to analyse differences between when I had been drunk to when I was sober. The conclusion was obvious, when drunk I can talk, I don’t care about my weight, lack of height etc. When sober I have a lack of confidence and am paranoid about certain aspects about my person. I knew that I could not be drunk 24/7 and that what I needed to do was to become a harder person, less paranoid etc. I had to be mentally drunk all of time without being physically drunk. I knew this would be hard to achieve but in future possibly when I was older would be a must.
This attitude is hard to achieve, however using some of following methods became a reality for me a number of years later.
2. YOU HAVE TO START TO LIKE YOURSELF!
At age of twenty-two I decided to as already stated deal with and try to overcome some of issues in my life. I started to read various books, like mind over matter and positive thinking type books.
In one such book it had a line which read:
“You need to start to like yourself”
I put book down and starting to think and realised that I didn’t actually like myself. I hated being overweight, shorter than average, having a bald patch and especially having a speech impediment.
I carried on reading and it went on to say:
“There are various things about one’s self which even though we don’t like we are unable to change, therefore we have to accept them. Other aspects we can change therefore we have to work extremely hard with determination to eradicate them.
Once again I put book down and thought about this. Firstly my height, am I ever going to grow any taller? The answer is no, there is nothing I can do to increase my height at age of twenty-two therefore I have to accept it. From reading more of book later I realised that I was being over-sensitive about this and some of my other issues. There are a lot of people out there a lot worse off than I am. Does my current height hurt me in anyway or affect my life in any major negative way, again answer is no.
Secondly, bald area on my head. As with above hair is not going to start growing in that area of my scalp, I have had bald patch since birth and therefore have to accept fact and even try to like it.
Then there is my weight. This is something that I could change, therefore I have to work hard to lose weight. I have to accept certain sacrifices; such as to eat less fatty foods and be disciplined to reach my target weight, however long it might take.
Finally there is my speech impediment. I had had a stutter since age of four and for me this was most important of all of my issues. I was not sure if I would be able to achieve fluency, however in my mind believed I could. If I can talk when I am drunk I should be able to talk when I am fluent. I was not going to accept having a stutter for rest of my life until I had worked hard to eradicate it. Work hard I did and eventually I overcome this major issue in my life.