Monday, February 05, 2007

Fluent At Odd Times

I have always found it interesting that my fluent moments come at the strangest times. Sometimes they come at times one would normally expect me to be completely dysfluent. For example: Job interviews. I find that I am extremely comfortable and mostly fluent during job interviews. I can't seem to recall a single time I was interviewing for a job where I had trouble hiding my stutter. I've always maintained the ability to be fluent, confident and spontaneous with my speech.

Additionally, I am very fluent and confident when I am giving a public speech. Something just happens when I get the microphone in my hand or step behind the podium. I feel confident, fluent, and able to take on the world. I flourished during my public speeking classes in college...and would even tutor others who were terrified of speaking in front of others. For this reason, I've never joined public speaking groups like Toastmasters. Other stutterers have invited me to, but they join in order to build their confidence. I don't need that particular brand of confidence...so my time would be better spent doing other things.

As a side note here, the confidence completely vanishes if I have to tell jokes. I secretly harbor a dream to be a stand-up comic, but know that it's impossible because of the required "timing" of telling jokes. So, while I am confident speaking publicly, if the speech requires some kind of timing element...like punch-lines...I am in trouble. I can almost never deliver a punchline when it's time to do so.

First dates: Being single, I am still on the lookout for that special "one"...and find that if I go out on that dreaded first date, I am completely comfortable and articulate. It's only after becoming more familiar with someone that I begin to fall into a trend of blocking and stuttering.

To me, these three things are strange because it seems that stressful situations should cause my stutter to become worse...and in some ways, it does (like the telephone). But, with these three things mentioned in this entry, public speaking, first dates, and job interviews, I find that I am almost completely fluent, confident, and do very well.

3 comments:

Jerome said...

"But, with these three things mentioned in this entry, public speaking, first dates, and job interviews, I find that I am almost completely fluent, confident, and do very well."

Could it be that it's because you're kind of playing a role there? And it's only when you have to reveal your 'true' self that you start stuttering?

Law Student said...

Jerome, that's very perceptive. I never thought of that...but it rings true. If I have to be "on"...then I'm almost playing a role. When I apply that "affect" to my voice and speech, my stutter disappears. Like when I speak with an accent. Thanks for the insight. Sometimes we can't see the forest for the trees. *smile*

Jerome said...

You're welcome! ;)