Are there certain English speaking people who you seem to be unable to speak with fluently? Does it feel like those people are actually triggering the ‘writing mode’ of your mind whereby you start stuttering and preparing your speech in your head prior to speaking out loud thus making it totally unnatural?
Well, it’s nothing unusual!
It’s happened to me on countless occasions, and even though now I’m over the very severe ‘writing mode’ symptoms, I would experience moments when I can’t speak at 100% of my ability with a particular person.
Sometimes, however, quite the opposite happens, and my English fluency literally opens up when speaking with a particular person. It’s as if THAT PERSON IS MY GOOD LUCK CHARM and my English fluency issues simply can’t do me any harm because I’m protected by that person!
I know it sounds far-fetched, and I fully understand that in real terms there’s nothing to prevent me from speaking fluently with any English speaking person in the world. When I speak, it’s ME who speaks after all, so why would another person’s presence have such a massive positive or negative effect on my fluency, isn’t that right?
In real life, however, people you communicate with DO play quite a significant role in the way you can perform in terms of using the right means of expression and also your overall fluency. Some have a negative, but some have a very positive effect on your spoken English – just like my mortgage advisor, for example!
What My Mortgage Advisor and My Daughter’s Horse Riding Instructor Have in Common
I was going to meet a mortgage advisor in my local bank branch, and I was slightly anxious about the scheduled meeting. Not that I didn’t know what exactly we were going to discuss, it’s just that you always get a certain amount of anxiety when looking forward to meeting new people!
I walked into the bank and I was told to take a seat in the waiting room to which I responded accordingly, but I noticed that I couldn’t speak in English as fluently as I normally would. I didn’t panic, of course, because I know better than to freak out over slight English fluency fluctuations which are going to occur regardless of my attitude anyway.
I could go nuts trying to do everything imaginable just to prove to myself and the bank clerk that my English was up to the standards, but I would run a serious risk of completely ruining my fluency by doing so!
So I just took the seat and waited on the mortgage advisor to come out and call me into her office while at the same time resorting to a few English fluency management strategies to keep my fluency fluctuations in a safe range.
The lady came out in a couple of minutes and we started talking… and gone was my English fluency slump!
There was something about her – although I couldn’t really put my finger on it – that simply opened up my fluency and enabled me to speak at 100% of my ability!
My confidence was soaring.
Our conversation was really, really nice and productive as well.
The whole experience made my day, and I drove back to work in a much, much better mood than I’d left my working place for the launch break an hour prior to the planned meeting.
I’ve had plenty of similar experiences with random people (and also people I speak with quite regularly) bringing out the best in me in terms of spoken English performance over the years, and so I came up with this theory that certain people are your spoken English good luck charms!
Same thing happened when speaking with one of my daughter’s horse riding instructors.
For some reason I can’t explain, from the moment I met her I could speak with her as if I were a native English speaker – the conversation just happened naturally. Her boss – the riding school owner – on the other hand, is quite the opposite (and I can’t figure out why!) and I always struggle a bit when speaking with her.
It’s a mystery to me, but one thing is for sure – you’d better take the opportunity to speak with your English good luck charm whenever you get a chance!
Get The Most Out of Your English Good Luck Charm!
If you have met a person who you can speak in English with as if he or she were your native counterpart, you’d better take an advantage of him or her and spend as much time speaking with them as possible!
I know it can be even annoying for the other person sometimes, but I guess you can put all such concerns aside and think about your fluency development first.
It might be a particular shop-assistant in your local coffee shop.
It might be your secretary at work.
Or maybe it’s a security guard working in the office building you enter and exit a few times a day.
Regardless of who your English lucky charm is, you should spend as much time as possible speaking with those people for the simple reason that they will help you develop your fluency even to a greater degree; those moments you’re spending with them might be the ONLY fluent conversations with other people you can enjoy!
And please bear in mind that ANYBODY can be your English good luck charm; they don’t necessarily have to be people you meet on a daily basis.
There’s a good chance, for example, for you to meet some native English speaker you can have a very fluent conversation with when ringing up utility companies in order to sort out some technical or bill related inquiries.
Any English Speaker Has the Potential to Be Your English Good Luck Charm
Call center operator.
Your child’s school teacher.
ANY native English speaker (other foreigners might work for you, but for me it’s always native speakers) you meet has the potential of suddenly triggering your most fluent speech.
Of course the reasons behind this phenomenon are of a psychological nature.
Of course in theory there’s nothing to prevent you from enjoying fluent English conversations with any English speaker in the world.
But so it happens that in real life some people are so easy to speak with that all your fluency related inhibitions just disappear like smoke in the wind, whereas others make you tongue-tied and stuck for words for no apparent reason whatsoever…
It Gets Even Better: As Time Goes By, More People Become Your Good Luck Charms!
It’s weird, I know that!
It happens nonetheless.
Sometimes, for no reason at all, the same person who used to trigger your English fluency issues suddenly becomes your English good luck charm!
The Production Manager in my work is a typical example of that.
It was extremely difficult for me to communicate with him a while ago.
I just couldn’t have proper conversations with him no matter how hard I tried.
And then – just like that! – he became one of those people I can always speak with easily and fluently even on days when my overall fluency isn’t at its best. In other words, he became my English good luck charm, and now I can always rest assured that I’m about to have a nice and pleasant conversation in English whenever I head down to the production section.
Maybe it’s because you become more confident around that person over time. But then again – how would you explain random people you meet for the first time having the ability to bring out the perfect English speaker within you?
Maybe it’s due to the fact that you stop analyzing your speech when you’re totally relaxed and that’s when those situations occur? Well, I wasn’t relaxed at all when I met my mortgage advisor, so this theory goes out the window!
Anyway, the simple fact is that some people are bound to become your English good luck charms at some stage in your life, so you better take all opportunities to communicate with those people and develop your fluency and spoken English confidence every time it happens.
Don’t forget, however, that spoken English self-practice is the key to truly fluent speech simply because you have to be speaking as much as you can. You just won’t get to speak with your English good luck charm often enough to develop your fluency using those conversations alone – unless, of course, you’re married with one! 😀
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!