Are you the type of person who struggles when speaking English? Do you find yourself unable to speak to others at times? There are several reasons why this occurs: fear of failure, fear of embarrassment, fear of rejection – but regardless, as the lingua franca, English, for most people around the world, is learned as a second language. The good news is anyone can improve their speaking skills in English with enough effort and practice as time goes on. If you happen to be struggling with the language, here are some things you can try now as a start.
Make it a part of your daily routine
If you can, speak every day with English speakers. You can learn how sentences are formed, what words are being used, or hear some words being used that you haven’t heard before. You don’t have to focus on grammar too much as grammar is more important for writing. Rather, pay attention to how ideas or the conversation is being connected throughout the whole process.
It’s okay to ask for help when you don’t understand what they’re saying. If you can’t understand some words or if they speak too fast, let the other person know. You can use these phrases if you don’t understand the other person: “I don’t get it” (meaning: I don’t understand) or “What does this/that mean?
You can also say:
- “Sorry, I’m learning English. Do you mind slowing down a bit?”
- “A little bit slower please?”
- “Can you repeat one more time please?”
- “Sorry, I can’t follow you. Could you slow down?
Learning new vocabulary every day is necessary when learning English. Sometimes the cause of poor communication is a limited vocabulary. There are many ways to learn new words on a daily basis. One example is through media such as TV shows, movies, music, and podcasts.
Good pronunciation can also lead you to have good communication skills. Many words are spelled differently, yet sound the same such as “bare” and “bear”. These are known as homophones. You have to work hard on this. Recording yourself speaking is a great way to get an idea of how you sound when speaking. Try recording yourself reading some parts of a book or a short article. You can then use tools like Sensay or even Google Translate to listen to how an AI voice sounds saying the same text.
Work on your confidence
I know it’s hard, but stop paying attention to what people might think. You have to ignore people’s judgment. It will set you free from feeling embarrassed or being too shy to speak with native speakers. If you let people’s judgment get in the way while you are learning it will make your progress of communication skills slow down.
Do you want to overcome nervousness when speaking? It’s common to feel anxious and nervous when learning a foreign language and trying to use it. Foreign Language Anxiety shows in similar ways to any other anxiety such as sweaty palms, increased breathing, and blushing. You must breathe properly and keep thinking that nobody is perfect. Be yourself and try your best!
Remembering why you are learning the English language will help you feel more confident and relaxed. You do not remember your objective only during the time that you are asked to speak. You should remember it every day, so you’ll be motivated to keep going.
For Your Convenience
Try Sensay, a popular English-speaking practice platform. We offer various exercises for anyone who wants to improve their communication skills to be more fluent by submitting their 30-second voice recordings daily, as often as they would like. Users can review pronunciation scores and see which words are incorrect, and listen to the correct pronunciation as well as your own voice. With Sensay, easily try different reading, image, video, self-practice, and Q&A speaking exercises.
For more information visit our YouTube page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know what you think about Sensay!