Hi Marianne! It’s great to have you here. Have you read the 3rd Edition of “Stuttering & Anxiety Self-Cures”? This 3rd Edition has much more content, and a much better book. If you haven’t read it, I strongly recommend you to do it.
Regarding your questions, learning to use the Crutches is like learning to play any sport or learning a new skill. The first times you play tennis, most likely you won’t be good at it. But if you keep on practicing, you’ll become really good at it. This is like driving a car. The first time you drive a car, you’re paying attention to the speed, the mirrors, the accelerator, etc. After having practiced it for some time, you just do it “automatically”. You just get into the car and go from A to B, effortlessly and without really thinking about this process. The same happens here.
My suggestion is to practice with the Crutches as much as you can, even when you don’t need them. This is very important. And one day you’ll realise that you will be using them automatically, unconsciously. This only requires consistency and practice.
I strongly recommend you to look at the videos of the coaching sessions. You can find them at the “Video” section of this website. There are plenty of videos where we show how to use them. In the online course Lee explains them pretty well too. And of course, we, the Certified Coaches, will be glad to help you personally with private coaching.
About which one to chose, pretty much depends on the situation. As you might remember from the book, Crutches 1-8 are best suited for First Feared Words (names, for example), and Crutches 7-12 are better for middle word issues. Combining Crutches is also a great idea.
I hope I’ve been helpful with these comments. Please do let me know if you have anu other questions.