Some advice can be really unhelpful, can’t it! Here I share a couple of examples and then I make 3 suggestions for dealing with unhelpful advice in ways that can enable us to take away something useful from whatever advice we receive.


  1. The most unhelpful piece of advice I have received – and received often! – is to “slow down”. This not only has the undesired effect of making me annoyed and frustrated, and therefore more likely to stammer, but also makes me feel like an idiot. “Slow down” – of course, how silly of me! If I do that then I will have perfect speech, and not make listeners so uncomfortable that they are prompted to give useless advice such as that. There I was thinking I had an actual problem, which I work hard to manage as much as I can, but it is actually all just down to me being so stupid and talking too fast. Very unhelpful indeed.

    • Interesting to notice our responses to this kind of advice, isn’t it? When we look at what’s underlying our initial response to unhelpful advice, it’s possible to connect to some wisdom about what IS needed in that kind of situation.

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    Sarah Leach

    Speech Therapist (fluency specialist)

    5 Staple Inn, High Holborn,
    London WC1V 7QH

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