6 Ways to Immediately Improve Your English Communication Skills

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’Words don’t come easy.’

You may have memorized endless lists of vocabulary, you may know all the grammar needed to hold any conversation and still find yourself at a loss when wanting to express yourself.

There are various reasons behind this phenomenon – some of them more obvious than others.

Check your Grammar ››

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In this article, I would like to give you a few tips to help overcome the difficulties you might be experiencing, using some of the simplest methods to improve your English communication skills.

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1. Slow Down Your Speaking Speed

You might be an eloquent speaker when it comes to your mother tongue, but expecting the same standards from yourself when speaking in a foreign language may not be very realistic.

Especially, if you’re at the early stages of learning. Learners are often told not to worry about the mistakes they’re making, however, it is easy to understand why you would like to make a good impression on your audience.
To overcome this difficulty, you may try slowing down your speaking speed.

Nobody will hold it against you if you speak more slowly and clearly. Great speakers do the same to get their message across. Selecting your words carefully may also be seen as a sign of respect towards your audience. It shows that you want to give them the best possible answer.

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2. Give Yourself Time to Think

Present perfect

You may be worried that the people you’re talking to are impatient and would like you to say what you want as quickly as possible.

First of all, it may not be true – people often prefer a well-thought-out answer to a rushed one.
So just relax.

Another practical thing you can do is equipping yourself with fixed phrases you can use when remaining silent doesn’t seem to be an option. Here’s an example:

  • Why is there so much violence on TV? That’s a good question. Let me think for a moment, I haven’t really thought about it before. Well, I suppose…

Here the speaker gains considerable amount of time to reflect just by repeating the question and adding a few sentences. If you do the same, you’ll sound more fluent and won’t feel the pressure of having to say something before you’re ready.

Fixed or set phrases are phrases whose words are usually fixed in a certain order. They can be verb patterns, idioms, collocations – basically anything we always say in one particular way. For example,

  • during the day
  • in the meantime
  • It’s been a long time since
  • Sorry to bother/trouble you, but…
  • Would you mind if…?
  • Oh, come on!
  • I’m just kidding!
  • For what it’s worth,…
  • To be right/wrong about
  • Tit for tat/an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth

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3. Learn Sentences, Not Only Words 

be positive

In a way, this will take the pressure off too. When you learn a new word, try to memorize a couple of sentences that contain it.

There might come a time when you can use one particular sentence with little, or no alteration at all. Unfortunately, many people learn words by heart, but have no idea how to use them in a sentence.

It will be such a relief not having to worry about whether the sentence is correct grammatically or not. Let’s look at an example:

to appreciate = to recognize the value of something/somebody

  • I think it’s necessary to feel appreciated in a relationship/ at work.
  • I appreciate all your hard work.

Isn’t it much more useful to memorize ’appreciate’ this way?

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4. Learn to Listen

When speaking in a foreign language, you might be so focused on what you are saying and whether it’s correct or not, that you forget to listen to what others are saying.

This is a big mistake as they might be using the exact words or grammar you’ll be needing later on. So pay attention to what’s being said around you, it’s your most important resource at the time of speaking to someone.

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5. Practise Your Interrogatives

conversation

We also need to keep in mind the fact that communication is a two-way process. Not only does it make you seem uninterested – even rude – if you don’t ask questions, you might also end up being the one who has to do all the talking. So, when you’ve run out of ideas about what to say next, remember: others might have something to add.

  • What are your views on that?
  • How about you? What do you think?
  • Why do you think there’s so much violence on TV?

Questions like this will keep the conversation going and will show your interest in other people’s opinion. They will also give you time to relax a little and start enjoying yourself.

Interrogatives can be quite tricky, so make sure you spend enough time learning the correct ways of asking questions.

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6. Produce, Produce, Produce

talk

As I said at the beginning of this article, you might know a lot about the language, but this is passive knowledge that must be activated somehow. Your aim is to be able to produce correct English; practice is undeniably the best way to learn and improve.

Writing is one way of producing language; it may help you get used to and reflect on the ways English operates, which, in turn, might prove to be useful when speaking.

Speaking, on the other hand, is a much more spontaneous process and nothing prepares you for it better than actually doing it. So, find people you can practise with – either on Skype, or on language exchange sites, or here on MyEnglishTeacher.eu with the help of our native teachers – I have a feeling that it will be a great experience.

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I hope you will find these tips useful. Feel free to ask any questions if something is not clear. Remember how important it is to ask? We’re here to help you.

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19 comments

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1

Th methods to memorize words and practicing English Grammar is really very Good. I like all these above. Also if your learning way is easy and interesting it will convert all the toughest things into easy.

2

This tips obviously develop the strength and confidence to achieve a goal. So, do enjoy it...

3

How do I practice or with whom should I practice ..I usually don't find people with whom I can talk anything in english

4

Try calling the toll free numbers of any coaching institutes, banks or companies and try to inquire about their products or services they provide. This is a good way to engage in a conversation and also don't forget to record the conversation so that you can reflect upon it and find the gaps to improve on.

5

i want to be good speaker in english i try to speak english i hope one day i will be good speaker

6

I love these ideas! Its nice,thank you.

8

Shall we start practice??

9

Thanks, I am crazy to leaning English

10

I want to learn english

11

i want to learn and improve myself to speech in english

14

i learn all thing in english like speaking ,writing,reading,drafting

15

I find! I find the most important thing about "how hells I'm will learn English??" and is THESE article THANK YOU!! I'm grateful for your time and hard work ??

16

I love these ideas! Thank you. It must have taken you ages to compile.
My students always say to me, "English is boring!" I say, "No! That's the wrong way of thinking!"
English is the tool you use to do interesting things. Are you bored with your mother tongue? Of course not. Do you even think about it? Of course not. Do things you like in English. Read wikipedia. Watch youtube. You learn something and your English gets better. Stop thinking about your English and just use it.
I make English youtube talks with the script, listening questions, answers and mp3 for download. Have a look:

17

thank's! I'm trying to check my grammar, but I don't know if the countdown is for the right time to do the test or the remaining time for do it, because I clicked on the try now's buttom and nothing happened... o.o anyways thank's for the advises, maybe I should just study the grammar, because i learned almost all watchig movies and reading (the opposite of this note xp).

18

The countdown is for remaining time. Yeah, definitely, try out different approaches.

19

Other ideas.
Take an English class, join an English group, find a tutor, read English magazines.
Do whatever you can to immerse yourself in the language. learning English conversation for beginners