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Mindfulness and Stammering

Sometimes you receive one single message that makes writing a book worthwhile. This is just such a message:

“Good Morning Dr. Williams and Dr. Penman

I feel like your programme was designed specifically for me. You couldn’t have made a more accurate treatment designed specifically for me and the predicament which I found myself in.

See, I am a stutterer. And thus meaning every speaking situation used to be a feared and dreadful situation, until I finally retreated to within my shell and enclosed myself from the world. I escaped from speaking situations like an ostrich would stick his head into the ground, in this way I retreated into my thoughts whilst I would be talking to someone. The anxiety became unbearable.

It became so bad that it crept into my private life and when I was on my own as well. I was stuck in this closed loop of ever repeating self-criticism and negative thoughts for what seemed like an eternity. I was jealous of people being able to talk fluently which would lead to further self-criticism. There was no escape.

But then I started your MBCT course. During the first week of starting your course one of my friends was sick in hospital and asked me to come and visit him. When I returned to work after seeing him, I had an overwhelming feeling of sympathy. Out of nowhere and for the first time in my life I could feel someone else’s pain. The reason being that I was no longer in my head, I was no longer enmeshed in my own problems. I suddenly started to cry. It was the most wonderful feeling I have ever had.

Since then I have discovered that I am an extremely creative person. I have started to write poems for no apparent reason, just because I want to. I love being creative! And what’s more my stutter is starting to dissolve. I no longer feel anxiety when I speak to people and my stammer is improving each day. I have truly discovered a jounevoire for life.

I cannot thank you enough. If it wasn’t for your amazing scientific discoveries I would still be hiding away in my room stuck in a negative, self-defeating closed loop of thoughts. You have saved my life in more ways than one.

May all the good things that possibly can, come to you

Many, many good wishes

Willem”

What can I say other than we’re truly delighted to have helped?

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