“He has a tendency to stutter while speaking”, she told me skeptically. Since I had coached someone with this before, I was curious to see what a session could do for him.
He did speak with often breaks between words, sometimes repeating sounds or words, not projecting any confidence and lacking energy.
After listening to him talking, I start by sharing: “I’ve noticed that you move of your eyes upward while talking, which make me think that you’re searching often for words or looking for how to put your phrase together. Is this why your phase comes out less fluent, which others might perceive as a tendency to stutter while speaking?”
“You’re right. I’m looking for words because I have a fear of saying something that might disturb the other person, or be perceived as an inappropriate answer in the discussion. That’s why I ponder the each word in my head.”
“Which also leads to speaking more slowly, and someone might perceive it as lack of confidence or being clumsy”, I’ve added. “Let’s see what we can do about this. You seem a smart guy to me, with a lot of potential, but this might block you to get what you want.” Looking for what could help him put that fear aside, I found myself asking something that I don’t usually bring up in a coaching session: “Feel free to not answer this question. Do you believe in God or another form of superior consciousness beyond the human beings?”
“Yes, I believe in God”, he answered.
“Then what do you need to put that fear aside, and trust that God will inspire you to say the right words in that specific situation? Would that lessen your mental pressure?”
“I think it would … I could let it come out naturally, just let it out!”
“Let’s test this. I’ll ask you a question, and you answer this way, naturally. Ok?”
I asked him a question, and to my surprise, he answered it beautifully: the phrase was more fluent, well formulated, it came out so naturally, and he projected more energy and confidence than before. Even his body position changed: the back was straight, looking ahead. “What do you think? Did you notice any difference?”
“Yes, it was like I was opening up more, and I even enjoyed answering this way!”
We tried again, and again, and it worked each time. “Now, you’ll need a reminder, something physical that could remind you to just let it out whenever you need to talk! What could be that reminder?”
“I don’t know.”
“What color do you associate with speaking naturally, letting it out?”
“My favorite color, blue.”
“It’s interesting because the water is perceived as blue as well, and with going with the flow. Like you speaking naturally. Now you’ll need to find something blue to carry with you, as a reminder to speak naturally.”
He smiled, “I know what that is.”
Do you have any fears that might block your success? Please share your comments below.