Comac King receiving his CII Certificate on the October 2018 course in Newry

Overcoming Stuttering Along The Banks Of The Newry Canal

2018 is closing its doors and what a way to sign off the final Irish McGuire Programme course of the year! The ripple effect from the ‘School for Stammerers’ documentary is still inspiring people to seek the path to articulate eloquence.

Seventeen people courageously stepped forward to take control of their stutter in Newry. The course was held in the Canal Court Hotel. The course commenced at 7pm on Wednesday 24th October and finished up around 7.30pm on Saturday 27th October. Kara McMahon – from the Newry area – instructed the course. Kara steered a tight ship and her disciplined yet warm humourous approach kept everyone smiling and in good spirits.

It was clear from Kara that support was a crucial factor to start this new journey against stuttering. The McMahon family were involved throughout the 3-days, reinforcing that “we’re all in this together” mentality and breaking down that sense of isolation.

Up to sixty graduates, coaches and course instructors came back to work on their own speech but also to teach and support the new students’ to ensure they get the best possible start to their new journey. The McGuire Programme blossoms when we all help each other grow.

The different ages and backgrounds of those in attendance gave a vibrant atmosphere to the room.

It was great to see the transformations in seventeen very determined people in just 3 days. On Wednesday night they were ruled by their stutter, fuelled by fear. By Saturday they could see and feel the freedom of speaking with control. They now have the techniques and support to combat their stutter and to live the lives they have only dreamed of.

Another year of journeys started and people empowered.

Cormac King

Group photo from our Public Speaking Event in Düsseldorf, Germany

Fear Is Fine – Embrace It, Don’t Dodge It.

As Susan Jeffers says ‘Feel the fear, and do it anyway’. Don’t wait for the fear to dissipate, it won’t. The longer you wait for the fear to go away, the more intense the feeling grows. Susan Jeffers states that becoming aware of your fears and your limitations can change your life as long as you learn how to deal with them. All through life we will come across situations that make us fearful but we need to learn how to approach these fears and move on with our life. People miss so many opportunities in life simply due to fear and anxiety; we need to approach these fears with simple steps each day that will allow us to take those chances and open doors that were previously closed. Fear can make your world smaller so don’t allow the fear to overtake you.

“Fear is fine – embrace it, don’t dodge it. Then, walk through the fire anyway.”

On the McGuire Programme we have the same approach to facing our fears and how to deal with them. We have techniques and strategies in place to deal with situations that make you feel less fearful. We learn more about ourselves when we take action, we don’t learn by sitting back and feeding the fear. By taking action and facing our fears we become less anxious and less fearful. On the program we take every opportunity that comes our way to talk and speak using technique. We take every opportunity to ‘expose’ ourselves for who we truly are. We are not our stutter. We are people who are working hard on controlling our stutters. We no longer hide our true selves. And it feels amazing. Once you break down that barrier, your outlook on life and your behaviour changes for the better. We can finally live without holding ourselves back from doing the things we’ve always wanted to do. This even includes the simple things in life, like ordering the food you desire, to giving your name when asked for it. These are major steps for a person who stutters.

I experienced a new student facing their fears head-on during our last course in Düsseldorf, Germany. I brought her out for the contact session on the Saturday of the 3-Day Intensive course. Once the new student started using the techniques and ‘exposed’ herself as a person who stutters, it removed the feeling of shame and guilt, it allowed her to free her mind from the stresses that a stutter can hold over us. It was also very inspirational for me to see the changes happening in front of me, and to keep doing what we do on the McGuire Programme. Helping people, like ourselves, to break free from the freezing, struggle and distortion, and from the many tricks and avoidances we all created to be seen as a ‘normal’, ‘fluent’ speaker.

No more ‘hiding’ for the 5 new students who joined us in Düsseldorf, who learned concrete techniques to turn passivity into assertiveness. And learned how to stop negative thinking patterns and reeducate their minds to think more positively. And how to turn every decision into a “No-Lose” situation.

“The more we do things that we’re afraid of, we are proving to ourselves that we CAN handle danger, uncertainty etc., the more we can feel confident that we will be able to handle similar experiences in the future. In other words, facing our fears is something we can practice and get better at, even if we can never completely obliterate fear from our lives.”

Did you find this article useful? Do you know someone who stutters, who would benefit from trying out the McGuire Programme and giving themselves the best possible start to controlling their stutter? Do you, yourself stutter? If so, get in touch with one of our representatives today. No need to be afraid to contact us, we all people who stutter, who have found a new lease on life via the McGuire Programme and it’s extensive backup support.

“An important truth: YOU can’t wait for the fear to go away before you do something!”

Our next 3-Day Intensive Course in Germany will be held in Frankfurt am Main in October 2017
Date: 18.-21.10.2017 – Don’t be the one who holds you back. Reserve your place today!

Attendees at a Refresher Day in Newry, Northern Ireland on 29th July 2017

Refresher Day In Newry, County Down, Northern Ireland

The day incorporated lots of drilling and presentations.  With courage we headed out on Street Contacts, to face the many fears associated with #stuttering, and this proved to be very beneficial with the support of coaches and grads.

It was a good disciplined day, working on our #stutter and putting time and effort into refocusing on technique.

Mary Moorehead, Coach on The McGuire Programme

Eddie Spiers & Sam Anderson receiving the Coaching Certificates from Rory West on the June 2017 course in Galway

Overcoming Stuttering In Galway, Ireland

The course was led by Rory West, whose disciplined, motivated and great sense of humour – captivated everyone in the room – from new students to returning refreshers / graduates / coaches.

One of the graduates who attended the June course said “This course has really helped me because I had a big presentation to do at work on the Tuesday after the course and from all practicing of the techniques on the course, my speech was very strong throughout my presentation.”

The 8 new students showed great courage, determination, perservance and gave a lot of trust to the coaches to teach this new technique.  The transformation from Wednesday evening to Saturday evening was phenomenal.

During this course Eddie Spiers and Sam Anderson were presented with their Coaching Certificates. Both Eddie and Sam have proven themselves to be dedicated coaches and committed to giving the best possible coaching, not only to the 8 new students, but also to members of the McGuire Programme in Ireland and abroad. They are a great asset to our support network which is the foundation of the Programme.

And….. the next course is in the City of Belfast from 25th-28th October 2017.  If stuttering is controlling your life – APPLY for that course!!

Contact Joe O’Donnell, McGP Regional Director, Ireland

A Titanic City Experience

To finish off our courses for 2015, we returned to Belfast, Titanic City, where 13 students embarked on their journey to overcome their stutter.

The course venue was the Holiday Inn Express in the Queens area of the city.

Over 40 existing members attended this course to help the students learn the technique and to improve their own speech.

12 of the students were from Ireland and 1 travelled from Nepal.

On The McGuire Programme courses we deal with the whole person, not just on the mechanics of speaking. The process is to clean up the physical aspect, as any good sports coach would, then deal with the psychological aspect.

By the end of the 3-4 day course, students have drilled and practiced disciplined technique, pushed out their comfort zones and are armed with the best after course support network on the market.

It’s hard to imagine in the space of a few days of hard work that people can be transformed from having no control over their stutter to having full control.

Thanks to Michael Donnelly for instructing this course and the fantastic team of members for giving us a wonderful experience in Titanic City.

If you are thinking of doing something about your stammer, look no further! Go for it.

48 Hours Later . . .

Another McGuire Programme intensive 3 day course finished but it is only the beginning of the life changing journey for 16 brave people who stutter – and who now have control over their stutters. The McGuire Programme has been changing the lives of people who stutter all over the world for over 20 years. I feel really proud to play an active part in changing the lives of people of all ages who stutter and I was given the pleasure of instructing my 5th McGuire Intensive Course over a beautiful June weekend in Salthill, Galway, Ireland.

Sixteen people who stutter joined us on the Wednesday night for the introduction session. They were a mixed bunch of people from all walks of life, aged between 13 and 74 years of age. Six of the new students were under the age of 18 and 4 were female – 25% female to 75% male. The majority (75%) were overt stutterers and the rest (25%) were covert.

I have to say that this was an exceptional and very emotional course to instruct. The new students with the help of the returning coaches and graduate members displayed great discipline inside and outside the main conference room. Some emotions got the better of people but that was not out of frustration but out of seer determination and seeing themselves change right before their own eyes.  Something they didn’t thing was possible until now.

Some of the new students told me after the closing speeches that they are so happy that they made the decision to attend and to join – some of these new students were apprehensive on the Wednesday night before the sessions began and even thought about turning full circle and going home before arriving at the hotel. I’m so happy they pushed themselves forward.

For those of you reading this that don’t know much about the programme, I will give you a bit of an insight. The McGuire Programme gives people who stutter the skills, techniques, ability and confidence to go from stuttering out of control to being able to do the things in life that people take for granted – speakingbut not only that, it transfer them into articulate eloquent speakers in full control of their stutters.

And another important thing to mention is that everyone involved in the programme is a person who stutters, who have themselves gone through the programme and have gained control of their own stutters and continual return to attend intensive refreshers courses in order to give something back and help the new students while still helping themselves on their own journeys.

The aim of the programme, as the book title states is to go ‘Beyond Stuttering’ and to deal with all the freezing, all the struggle, the distortions, and the many tricks and avoidances of a person who stutters and replace these behaviours with powerful, eloquent and articulate speech.

So, if you are considering joining this wonderful programme, the next McGuire Programme Ireland Three Day Intensive Course will be held in Belfast this coming October 2015. And if you are seriously thinking about attending and doing something proactive about your stutter and your stuttering behaviour, then please contact the Regional Director, Joe O’Donnell.

You won’t be disappointed.

Emmet O’Connell, Course Instructor & Regional Director McGuire Programme Deutschland