Growth Through Speaking – Vikesh Anand

About the Author: V-v-vikesh is just the way my name usually comes out. I don’t have fear or anxiety; stuttering is just the way I’m wired. I manage technology at a primary school in Brisbane, Australia where I have resided for almost seven years before moving across the pond from Toronto, Canada and prior to that New Jersey in the U.S.  I’m also the National President of the Australian Speak Easy Association, Australia’s peak body supporting people who stutter.  My global experience has allowed me to explore stuttering through different cultures and continents.

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Comments

Growth Through Speaking – Vikesh Anand — 18 Comments

  1. I think your messages are beginning to gel into an excellent coherency for people who stutter. I’m looking forward to see where they ultimately end up 🙂

  2. I really enjoyed this, Vikesh! As I get older, I find it so much easier to watch and listen to a video rather than reading long articles. Here, you talk about all of the potential there really is to grow from speaking. I especially like the bit about you can grow by getting out of your comfort zone and seize speaking opportunities. You also said that we who stutter should try and speak even (especially) in those situations where we uncomfortable.

    You said that one of the last groups you finally opened up to was work colleagues. Why do you think opening up about stuttering was uncomfortable? And are you fairly open and transparent now in the workplace?

    Pam

    • Thanks Pam for your thoughts.

      Opening up about stuttering is very personal and I tend to keep business separate from personal. I was also afraid of negative judgment about something personal when I was a good employee from a business perspective. When I first disclosed, everyone knew I stuttered including my boss and his boss. I was the one who thought my covert ways were hiding it all this time. It was such a weight off my shoulders.

      Fast forward to now where I am completely open and transparent and my employer knows all about my advocacy efforts related to stuttering, as of all my of colleagues.

      Being open about it in all environments allows me to feel free to say what I want to say however the words come out.

  3. Hello Vikesh,

    Thank you for sharing. I liked your point about getting out of your comfort zone to speak about stuttering and to educate others about stuttering. Education is so important when considering that so many people have very limited knowledge or they are misinformed about stuttering. As a Speech Language Pathology graduate student, your post sparked several questions regarding treatment for fluency disorders. What advice do you have for Speech Language Pathologists to help their clients move out of their comfort zone to begin talking more openly about their stutter? What is something you wish a speech therapist and/or parent would have told you about stuttering when you were a child?

    Thank you!

    Annika

    • Thanks Annika for your comments and questions.

      Children should know that they are not the only ones who stutter. I didn’t meet and speak about my stuttering until I was 28 years old, and that was a very isolating feeling. They should also know that fluency is not the holy grail needed to be an effective communicator in life. Society needs to adjust their way of thinking and realise that we all speak differently, sometimes with foreign accents and something with other issues such as stuttering. It shouldn’t be classified as “wrong” vs “right” but just different. If we were all the same, this world would be a boring place.

  4. Hello Vikesh! I am currently a speech-language pathology in my first fluency course. I think your take-home messages in your video are very important for both individuals who stutter and those that do not. I was able to connect the concepts I am learning in class to your experiences as well. One thing you mentioned that I believe is very crucial is the importance of non-stutterers understanding that stuttering is not a form of unintelligence, nervousness, or any other sort of disability. I believe a lot of times the ability to able to appreciate a difference that someone has begins with the foundational knowledge of stuttering. This also brings me to one of your last points highlighting the obligation that individuals who stutter have to educate others. I believe as a future speech-language pathologist I am also obligated to educate as well! Thank you for your time and wonderful video!

  5. Cool video. (BTW, did you meet anyone interesting at that FL meeting?) I’m not sure we give people enough credit for coming to self-help meetings. As you know, many call for meeting info, fewer plan to come, and fewer still actually make it. (One local attendee admitted that it took her 3 attempts to show up; on her 2nd try, she got within one exit of the meeting site before turning around and going back home.) Give yourself credit for getting involved and accomplishing so much.

  6. Hi Vikesh!
    I really loved listening to you speak about your story and how you were able to come to terms with your stutter and not be ashamed of it. I was just wondering, how hard was it for you to come to terms with your stutter and be able to be proud of it and not ashamed?
    Thank you so much!
    -Alyssa

    • Thanks for your comments and questions Alyssa. It has taken me quite some time to come to accept with who I am as a whole person and gain the confidence to move on with my speech. I think we all have individual speech journeys so the amount of time it takes me will likely be different to the next person. Our own lived experiences also shape how much we have to untangle from our past speech lives.

  7. Vikesh,
    Your video was outstanding! I definitely agree with you that everyone needs to know about the stuttering community and get out of their comfort zones. It is so important that others are educated on this topic many people know nothing about!