My name is Lee Lovett. I am not a doctor, but I consider myself an expert of sorts on stuttering, because I battled it for some 25 years, during my teens, 20s and 30s. I have read countless books on the subject and I wrote a book about the methods that I use to control it. In short, stuttering forced me to become a better person.
I am a long-retired attorney who co-founded dozens of still operating businesses, and I recently wrote four books. I also did a website for my family and for those interested, you can find it at leeglovett.com.
For reason still unknown to me, I began stuttering badly in early puberty and the problem grew progressively worse. By my mid-20s I had a wife, two sons, and I was flat broke. I just graduated from law school. When trying my first case in court I was unable to say my own name or my clients name and many other words. The judge intervened and finished my words and sentences. It was ghastly. I wanted to die right on the spot, literally!
I knew that, absent immediate improvement of my stuttering, my nascent legal career was all but over. In the 1950s and 60s there were few books, clinics, therapists, associations and certainly no internet to help stutters. So, I scraped together enough money to pay for six sessions with a psychiatrist, Dr. Frank S. Caprio, a well-known author. I wanted Dr. Caprio to hypnotize me and tell me I did not stutter. I thought that would cure me. He said that it might cure me for a month, or a week, or a day, or an hour, but that it would not cure me permanently. In fact, he was not sure that there was a cure, a permanent one for stuttering, but he felt that I could improve my stuttering dramatically, and he recommended that I try self-hypnosis.
He explained that it was nothing more than a deepened state of relaxation and had no risks. He gave me a short paperback book on the subject captioned, “A practical guide to self-hypnosis” by Melvin Powers. Its techniques were not hard to learn, and I began giving myself daily self-hypnosis treatments. One before going to sleep, one before rising and one during the day.
I found that I really did not need to be hypnotized as such – simply being deeply relaxed seemed to do the job. When relaxed I would visualize and hear myself speaking fluently, and the more that I maintained those images in my mind, the less that I stuttered. Self-hypnosis gave me fluency visualization on steroids.
Self-hypnosis also led me to Auto Suggestion – a much easier discipline for mind control that could be done in smaller bites, such as five minutes here and there.
Auto suggestion was popularized by Émile Coué, a late 1800s pharmacist turned psychologist, who wrote a series of books on the subject. Coué preached three things relaxation, visualization, and repetition of the thoughts that you wish to have.
I would say things when deeply relaxed such as… I love to speak, when I begin speaking calm sweeps throughout my body… I focus on my message and the way I deliver my message – not of the words. I can see and hear myself speaking fluently. I repeated such statements up to 20 times per mind treatment and over time, my mind became full of positive memories of fluency, and my stuttering gradually declined.
By trial and error, I also discovered crutches, or tricks if you will, that enabled me to leapfrog over most feared words. These crutches helped me avoid creating new memories of stuttering. Those crutches are detailed in my book and the video course I did on same. My crutches combined with my multiple daily mind training treatments enabled me to stutter less and less until my stuttering became undetectable as it now is.
Yes, for some years, I had stuttering fears but not every hour or minute as I once did. And for decades now, only my wife has been able to catch me in a rare stutter. Stuttering first threatened my life and then it saved my life and made me a better person.
Fighting stuttering forced me to learn mind-training methods that helped me control my mind, my attitudes, my thoughts, my words, my actions, my Karma, and my level of peace and joy. To this day and every day of my life, I still give myself what I call mind treatments, and I use a crutch now then to avoid a stutter. But my life is a hundred times better now than it was before I began stuttering.
I can honestly say that I’m grateful that I had to battle stuttering. I wrote all of this in detail in my my book “Stuttering and Anxiety Self-Cures” which can be found on WSSA’s website, along with the 20 video course I did to complement the book.
I’m long retired now and I also Skype with as many readers as my time allows, doing over 5,000 coaching sessions in the last five years. In closing I can assure you of one thing.
Life is good or bad because that’s the way we choose to see it. Stuttering is a beast to be sure, but you and I can manage it, and we can use it to become better people and to live happier lives, and that’s what I want for you
I leave you with the words of Dr. Frank S Caprio:
“We have free choice to accept or reject our thoughts.
Use your mental switch to dictate your thoughts.
Believe that you can improve, and you will.”