Perfection, Prestige, and Performance are the drivers of the world. I believe it’s wrong. All I see is people come out feeling depressed and having low self-esteem. Every day we try to live up to the standards we put on our selves and the expectations of others. It’s killing us. We also stress around to take a break. Isn’t that paradoxical? Stressing to take a 15-minute break while stressing because we don’t get work done.
If I should wait for Perfect speech then I would still wait.
On top comes that we are all believed to be able to have a normal conversation. The Homo Sapiens (that’s you and me) are the intelligent ones. We are the ones who were able to communicate on a higher level and collaborate effectively when we killed the stupid Neanderthals (those without intelligent language) some 40 000 years ago.
But being individuals who stutter, we are doomed to failure. At least in the light of Perfection, Prestige, and Performance. We lack the perfection of our speech even though we are the clever ones.
And so what!
Maybe people expect us to stutter, but I expect them to be goats, while I am the shepherd. I decide to stay outside the herd.
Be you, be strong
I was never happier than when I decided to step outside the circle of Perfection, Prestige, and Performance. I think that we as humans have stopped just Being. Today it’s more about Having. And when you don’t have perfect fluent speech all day, every day and in your sleep, you get sad and lonely. I understand. I’ve been there. But I also moved on. I believe:
- Done is better than Perfection.
- Being is better than Prestige.
- Relationship is better than Performance.
Relationships are slow moving. It’s different from the fast paced Performance society where we constantly check Facebook or Twitter to evaluate and compare our level of Perfection and Happiness against our friends. It’s about having the most friends. And having the better life. Who decides which life is the better one?
What are your values? What do you believe in? How will you lead your life regardless of stuttering?
I’m done with Perfection, Prestige, and Performance and comparing myself to others. I will never return to that state of being. Perfection, Prestige, and Performance never gave me fluency and normal conversation. It only gave me a feeling of failure and depression. Because why couldn’t I just be normal?
If I should wait for Perfect speech then I would still wait. I believe that Done is better than Perfection and that has led me to fluent speech. Another variation of Done is Doing. As in doing speech. You won’t achieve fluency without talking. In other words; you have to walk the talk.
How much do you talk each day? How many times a day do you hit yourself in the head for lack of Perfection? How many times a day do you clap yourself on the shoulder and say, “Well done. I said something. I was brave.”?
The end goal is not the end
A lot of people who stutter believe that the end goal is to be fluent. It’s only part of the equation. The real goal that none of us will achieve (and that’s good) is to form better relationship with our friends and family. And we do that with our speech and the way we treat people. And we should focus on forming better relationships instead of comparing our speech performance and -perfection to others. When you form better relationships you instantly feel better.
Comparing yourself to others will do you no good.
What will you do when you achieve fluency? Then what? Is it something that you can do now even when you’re semi-fluent? Something like small talk? (because I know you are fluent sometimes).
Failure, failure, and failure
This leads me to Success. Another world driver. Success means that you achieve something of value and that other people acknowledge your achievement. But the thing is that being fluent is a longterm goal. What if other people don’t acknowledge your achievment. Aren’t you successful then? Success as a measure is wrong and a problem. It’s a problem because Facebook and Twitter might not be around when you achieve fluency. OK, other social media might be around. What I mean is that Unicorn goals like, Only when I become absolutely 1150 % fluent THEN I will do X, Y and Z, will not help.
Is stuttering your master or are you the master of stuttering?
Goals are meant to be milestones on the way to something larger. But if the goals for some reason become too big and unreachable, then they work the opposite way. They become oppressive and non-motivating. The result is that we feel like failure because we don’t have anything to post on Facebook and Twitter.
And when the goal is unreachable, you won’t do X, Y, and Z and that is sad because it would make you happy and give you confidence if you did it.
What would you like to do, but think you can’t because of stuttering? How is stuttering designing or controlling your life?
If you really want to change
If you really want to stop stuttering, then do it because you have something you want work on that you absolutely cannot do when you stutter. And believe me, there are many things you can do even if you stutter. You just have to change your attitude.
I am sure you have an internal checklist for things that are out of reach? Am I right?
Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate that list and do the things first and then cross them off if you can’t do it after you tried. Maybe you learn that you are not as helpless as you think? But you have to try and do the things. Otherwise you cheat.
Remember, other people’s dreams are not yours. You should kill “your” dreams.
Just be who you are. And do what you like to do. Then you can be a role model for those who don’t dare yet. But they will join us. Wait and see.