There was a time during this summer when I noticed my fluency wasn’t what it used to be.
Well, I would still speak very well, it’s just that I’d started spending more time on thinking of certain English words I wouldn’t be able to recall while having conversations with people which lead to more hesitation than normally.
This wasn’t the end of the world situation for me – even after dealing with my severe fluency issues years ago I’d still experience a slump in my ability to speak without much thinking in English every now and then, and normally it would be gone in a day’s time or so.
This time around, however, it was lasting for quite some time, and it got me thinking what was so different about all the various circumstances in my life and at work that would have made me go into this permanent mode of deteriorating fluency.
Being super-busy at work? (summer is SUPER-BUSY in the knitwear factory I work in!)
Normally it’s not an issue; more often than not I find it easier to speak in English when I’m 100% engaged in tasks at hand (your mind simply doesn’t have ANY time to wander and question things you’re saying in English!)
Not making any videos for my YouTube channel? (I had to spend all my free time on refurbishing my new house this summer!)
Well, I was still doing loads of spoken English self-practice AND speaking non-stop with people at work so the lack of video making had to be ruled out!
Lack of energy?
Lack of energy…
Lack of energy!!! 😀
When I made the simple connection between my energy levels and my fluency, it all started to make sense.
You see – during the summer I was eating quite poorly. Most of the time I grabbed some ready-to-go meal in the local diner and quite often I would go without eating for prolonged periods of time. I’m pretty sure you’ve experienced something similar in your life at least on a few occasions – you’re too busy doing all the things you have to do, and next thing you know – it’s past ten o’clock at night but you haven’t had your dinner yet!
As a result of my not-so-good nutrition I’d started experience almost permanent fatigue; however, just because I pushed myself quite hard, I almost forgot how tired I actually was!
When I thought of my diminished ability to speak fluently, it all kind of came together, and I decided to start eating a bit better and see if my fluency would improve.
That night I had a superb dinner followed by a late-night meal, and even though overeating isn’t what I’m suggesting in this article, it had an almost immediate effect on my energy levels and also my ability to speak.
The next morning at work I was literally flying around the place AND I could speak with others in English just like a native speaker!
Spoken English is Very Much a Physical Discipline!
I’ve known it for quite some time that the ability to perform well in terms of one’s spoken English can be developed, exercised and maintained just like any other practical skillset – playing a guitar, playing soccer or driving a car.
If you speak a lot, your mouth will respond very well to “training” and as a result you’ll find it easier to speak in English and verbalize your thoughts.
If your spoken English related activities are next to nothing, you’ll find it almost impossible to speak fluently for the simple reason that your mouth wouldn’t be used to speaking – no matter how much passive English activities you would have involved yourself in!
The amount of practice you’re getting is just one element affecting your ability to speak fluently, though.
There’s a whole lot of other factors – such as stress, your energy levels and the overall well-being – that has a direct impact on your English fluency – and while stress is quite an obvious one (surely you’ve noticed that when you’re stressed out your fluency deteriorates!), the role of nutrition mightn’t be so easy to attribute to your fluency fluctuations.
If Your Body’s Starving of Nutrients – So Is Your Brain!
In fact, it’s all pretty much straightforward:
- If you don’t eat well, you don’t supply your body with all the necessary nutrients;
- If your body doesn’t get enough nutrients in order to function at 100% of its capacity, both your physical AND mental performance are going to be affected by it to a bigger or smaller degree;
- Your brain function and your ability to process abstract concepts (part of which is the ability to speak) is also dependent on a constant supply of good nutrition, water and oxygen;
- Lack of nutrition directly affects your ability to speak well – especially in a second or third language such as English!
Just the other day I hadn’t had proper breakfast and when I arrived at work, I felt a bit tired. Believe it or not, but I also noticed my English fluency had gone down just by a little bit along with the overall levels of confidence and self-esteem. Next day, after a hearty fry-up, all my confidence was back again and I was speaking with my colleagues in English as if it were my native language!
Sure enough, you can’t always attribute your English fluency fluctuations to lack of proper nutrition; however, there’s one thing I can say for sure – if you ensure your brain gets proper nutrition and fires on all cylinders, your chances of having a bad fluency day will be greatly reduced!
P.S. Would you like to find out why I’m highlighting some of the text in red? Read this article and you’ll learn why it’s so important to learn idiomatic expressions and how it will help you to improve your spoken English!
P.S.S. Are you serious about your spoken English improvement? Check out my English Harmony System HERE!