Hello, darling! This is my last newsletter before I ride the holiday horse towards the horizon, but you know I would never leave you without some fabulous tips and tricks on how to improve your English while I’m away! Got 5 minutes? Great. Let’s get started.
This could be you. You want to raise the bar on your English communication skills. You don’t have a lot of time. I get it. I hear this on the daily, and guess what – improving your English can start right now (‘now’ meaning after reading this newsletter, of course!) and you don’t need a lot of time. You can make small changes today that will start taking you down the right path – small steps but all in the right direction – the final destination being Awesome English, of course! Let’s go. Each step takes just a few minutes. One of them takes less than half of a half of a minute. No excuses anymore! Got 5 seconds? Sure you do. Now let’s rock.
- If you have a radio alarm, set it to BBC Radio (BBC World Service is a personal favorite…oops I mean favourite) or any all –English radio program. Often a song you hear first thing in the morning (or an annoying radio jingle) will stay in your head all day, whether you like it or not. If the first thing you hear is English words, there’s a good chance that some of those words will stay with you throughout the day. (30 seconds)
- Organize and activate your new words. Download the free ‘Dictionary.com’ app and mark all your new words as ‘favorites’ (by clicking on the star). This way you can keep all your new words in your phone. Use the handy audio link to hear how each new word is pronounced. (Downloading takes about 5 seconds)
- For every new word you learn, learn a synonym (a word that means the same) and an antonym (a word that means the opposite), and put each new word into a sentence of your own. The Thesaurus.com app, which is part of the Dictionary.com app is a great resource for this. The more active you are in using these words, the easier these words will come to you when you need them. (5 minutes)
- Do what I call a Word Blitz. Set a timer for 1 minute. Think of a word and write down all the words you can think of that are connected to that word – see if you can come up with 20 words in 1 minute! This is an excellent way to expand your descriptive language. Instead of saying something was ‘big’, how about saying ‘enormous’, ‘huge’, or ‘colossal’ instead? You are fabulously diverse and your language should be too! (1 minute)
- Reading and listening is not enough. Get active! If you read an article, find 3 new words in it and activate them that day. (5 minutes) Write a summary about what you’ve just heard or read. Grab my online courses and watch my video masterclasses and do the worksheets (www.businessenglishcommunication.com or www.rockyourenglish.com). Keep an English diary. Skype with a friend in English. Have an office rule that all coffee breaks will be held in English, or that everyone at work speaks English until lunch. (Have lunch at 3 pm.)
I hope that this helps you realize that improving your English communication does not take a lot of time. At all. What it does take is commitment and the desire to learn and improve. It only takes a bit of effort – setting a timer, downloading an app (and using it), but the results will make it all worthwhile. Trust me. (If you don’t have 1 minute to improve your English, then you are spending waaaaay too much time watching cats playing piano on You Tube. Stop that.)
Ok, enough reading. Now start DOING. Use it or lose it, darlings! And yes, you can go back to watching cat videos when you are done. But only if you write a summary about it afterwards!
Have a great summer, my dear. I’ll be back in your inbox in a few short weeks!
Wit lof forever and ever,