I have a Voice – Book Review

I have a Voice

Review in Rapport Magazine by Judith E Pearson

By happy coincidence, I received Bob Bodenhamer’s I Have a Voice while conducting NLP counselling sessions with a teenage boy who stuttered. Stuttering has received public attention with the popularity of The King’s Speech. Like the unconventional speech therapist in the movie, Bodenhamer has worked with hundreds of people who stutter, helping them achieve fluency. His successes and articles on the subject have attracted worldwide recognition. He is a leading expert and pioneer in treating stuttering, stammering, and verbal blocking. His book is for therapists as well as those seeking a self-help approach to the problem. The premise is that stuttering is a learned behaviour rooted in traumatic childhood events that prove detrimental to social relationships and self-esteem. The book draws upon neuro­semantics, NLP, and cognitive psychology in defining the components of stuttering and describing strategies for change. I Have a Voice shows how to accomplish these outcomes in a therapeutic approach that incorporates NLP interventions for reframing meanings, releasing trauma, changing limiting beliefs, achieving calm, reaching personal empowerment, confronting cognitive distortions, shifting one’s perceptions and focus, and developing behavioural flexibility. Bodenhamer estimates 25 to 30 hours of therapy and much at-home practice are required for success. Bodenhamer has produced a definitive, landmark text for treating stuttering. It should be in the hands of every speech therapist. As to my teenage client, after a dozen sessions his stuttering reduced in frequency and his speaking confidence improved. His parents said they had previously taken him to psychotherapists and speech therapists, but had not witnessed the improvement that he made with NLP. Thank you, Bob!