Stammer School is the second documentary I've seen about the McGuire Programme (a course to teach people who stammer to find their voice), as Gareth Gates also did a documentary a while back. It's pretty poweful viewing, and my twitter stream last night was full of tears and cheering.
13 lessons we can all learn from Stammer School
1.We all have different goals, and they are equally as valid. One woman wanted to host a party with her friends, one man wanted to start teacher training. We just need to start by working out our own goal.
2.One step at a time. We need to break our goals down and just take one step towards our goal at a time. The stammer school pupils start with breathing, and then one sound at a time. They also use 'training wheels' at the start (they wear a belt as a tool to remind them about their breathing) to help get them on the right path.
3.Recognise small achievements. The pupils celebrate the first hurdle; saying their full names, with gusto.
4. Find inspiration from people who have succeeded just as you hope to. Whether its someone famous, like Gareth Gates, or in real life with a mentor.
5. Build on each success. Once you've reached a milestone, use it to keep stretching and reaching even further. In the stammer school once they'd said their name, they moved that skill to the phone, to make it challenging once again.
6. Force yourself to confront the fear, and overcome it. Once the pupils had tackled the phonecall, they head out to the street, to talk to strangers. The fears were faced over and over again.
7. Who you are today, isn't who you have to be tomorrow.
8. We do not have to be defined by our challenges, fears or failures.
9. We have to be willing to work hard, and take the leap. No can make the change for us.
10. Success isn't a finished package complete with a silk bow. Don't wait until the finish line to start feeling and enjoying your success. One woman on the show wanted to be be able to give a speech, and she did. Did she have an absolute perfect speech (with no stutter); no. But did she give her speech and feel bloomin' fabulous - yes!
11. We often feel alone in our challenges, but that is never the case. None of us are that unique. We just need to go and find others like us.
12. Do not measure your success against someone else's success. Our journeys may look different, and may even be headed in different directions.
13. Sometimes we need help, and cannot succeed alone. We may even need to pay a professional (as the pupils at the stammer school did), but that is fine! All part of the journey.