Many of you who stutter and have undertaken an intensive speech therapy program know the feeling of elation you have when you've finished. Four or five days of solid stuttering therapy leads to, for the majority of people, a major improvement in fluency. Many people simply want to just 'get out there' and use their newly-found control, their wonderful new fluency. Their confidence is brimming, self-esteem has skyrocketed and the thought of stuttering is no longer there. It's an ecstatic feeling, that feeling of being in control, I know, I've been there.
If people only knew at that time how close they were to failure, they may pull back just a little.
I do not want to be a party pooper, a wet blanket, but it must be said. Speaking from experience, and I am giving out a warning here! – Do not leave an intensive stuttering therapy course without reigning in that 'can not wait to get out there and speak feeling' I have just described. If you want that beautiful exhilarating feeling of fluency control to continue, then think, think about what you have to do to ensure you keep that control. If you do not use your new technique, you may ride along on what we call carry-over fluency for a time, but, from experience, it's mostly short-lived.
Ensure your fluency lasts. Ensure your technique is in place every time you open your mouth. Practice, practice, practice! You will extend your control if you apply this common sense rule. Your new technique is your solid foundation for fluency success, make sure it's always there and do not fly off at the mouth, just because you happen to feel fluent. Apply your thoughts and aim to extend the feeling of control that you have made so hard for, and use technique. Think about using technique even during a fluent conversation. The act of thinking about technique while out and about acts as real reinforcement to that technique and to fluency within your mind.
I know I am harping, nagging and repeating myself ad nauseum. It's worth stressing because, because without technique, if it's not there when you open your mouth, it's a very slippery slope back to lack of control. No one wants to go back there, especially when you have tasted the wonderful feeling of being in control.
Be boss over your mind and do not take fluency for granted. Join me on this quest for speech fluency.