English Small Talk Phrases (Updated December 2017!)
MY NAME IS ROBBY, and I'm the author of the English Harmony System - Read About My 5 Year Long Journey to English Fluency HERE! Hi my foreign English speaking friends! Here I’ve created a list of the most important English small talk phrases so that you never have situations when you get stuck when bumping into someone on the street or greeting your colleagues in the morning! Here you’ll also find a good number of English phrases you can use to respond to typical greetings. And even more – some of the phrases below will help you add more substance to what you’re saying to your chat partner and also help you take time and think over the question. At the end of the list you’ll find typical good-bye phrases and you’ll definitely find them handy when finishing off a conversation or even if you want to get rid of the person you’re chatting with! :-) There's also industry small talk phrases - and they're definitely going to come in handy in work-related situations. Whenever you want to ask your work colleague to cover you for a couple of hours and tell them you're going to keep a low profile because you went out the night before - all this is covered in the industry small talk section! So, click on the links below and they'll take you to the respective section of English small talk phrases! ;-) (more…)
You Can Choose Your Own Selection of English Phrases!
English Idiomatic Expression: “To The Best of My Knowledge”
Where I Source All These English Idiomatic Expressions?
Here’s how to improve your English listening skills when listening to my video: put the headphones on, playback the video and write it all down while listening to it! Hi guys, hello boys and girls and welcome back to Robby’s English Harmony video blog! I’m obviously Robby, your English fluency facilitator. Yes, that’s the term that I came up with myself, facilitator means obviously someone who facilitates your fluency. I’m not a teacher, because I really hate the term teacher. It kind of implies a traditional setting whereby the teacher is looking down on their students, right? But I’m not looking down on you guys, I’m just merely facilitating your fluency and improvement! I’m accompanying you on your journey to English fluency, that’s all I’m doing, I’m giving you the right advice, the right tools and then it’s up to you guys to decide whether you take my advice on board and take some action or you don’t in which case obviously your fluency won’t improve. It’s as simple as that! As a matter of fact, I’m getting plenty of questions almost on a daily basis asking me to help people with their fluency. And the question is posed in a way that makes me kind of wonder whether that person actually realizes that it’s actually down to them to make all the effort, do the hard work and actually work on their fluency because they almost expect me to kind of magically transfer all my skills unto them but it just doesn’t happen like that in real life. And it’s another one of those things that I blame the traditional English teaching industry for - basically they’ve created this notion out there that if you just attend an English class, you will improve just because you have attended the class. The teacher has all the qualifications and it’s enough to have that kind of setting and you will automatically improve. So it kind of takes away all the hard work and effort that you have to do. And it makes it look as if it’s very easy but in real life it’s quite hard, right? It’s hard work. But a lot of people don’t realize that and they think that Robby will somehow make them fluent which is not the case. I’m merely facilitating your own journey to fluency. I’m giving you the right advice, the right tips and tricks, so that’s how it happens, right? But anyway, today’s video is all about how I find all these English idiomatic expressions and collocations and phrases, you name it. How I come up with them. Because I’ve been cranking out all of these idiomatic expression videos – well, lately I haven’t published too many of them because of my high workload, I’m currently engaged with a couple of students that I took on. My Fluency Star students and I still had a few left from the previous round. (more…)
English Idiomatic Expression: “Come As a Surprise”
In this English idiomatic expression video you’ll learn how to use the following phrase: TO COME AS A SURPRISE There’s a number of variations to this particular phrase such as: It shouldn’t come as a surprise that… It came as a surprise to me that… … and each of them can be used in a different kind of a situation. The first one – “It shouldn’t come as a surprise that” – can be used whenever you want to express the predictable nature of some event or a person. Basically it’s when you want to say that it’s not really surprising that something happened or someone acted a certain way. (more…)
English Collocation: The Worst Case Scenario
English Idiomatic Expression: “Common Denominator”
Are you familiar with the math term COMMON DENOMINATOR? You may, or you may not be familiar with it, but the fact of the matter is that this English math term has long surpassed the boundaries of science :!: Nowadays COMMON DENOMINATOR is widely used to describe any of the following: Traits and characteristics certain people have in common; Features that certain things have in common; Something that is present in a number of different situations. Are you confused? (more…)
Funny English Phrases: Death & Dying Related English Idioms
Funny English Phrases: Discussing Relationships
Are you YearOfEnglish.com member? If not – you still have a chance to subscribe to that website HERE and receive various English fluency improvement related information tips in your e-mail till the end of this year! If yes – you’re welcome to watch the funny English phrase video above I’ve prepared for you! This time around I've stuffed the video full with phrases that might come in handy when you discuss your relationship with a friend of yours. Yes, I know it’s not good to talk about people behind their back – especially if the person in question is your partner, girlfriend or spouse. Still, it’s one of the things people do when they’ve had a bad day at home and they want to unwind – they meet up with their friends and share those experiences with them… After all – what are friends meant for?! :grin: (more…)
Fluency Gym Coach Goal #1 Complete: 50 American Phrases Acquired!
27 days ago – April 30, to be more specific, I published the first video featuring an American English phrase TELL YOU WHAT. It marked the start of a journey that saw me record 42 videos within 25 days learning 50 new American English phrases, expressions, collocations and grammar constructs. A few facts about this 50 American Phrase Acquisition Mission: All American phraseology acquired during this mission has been sourced from GONE series dystopian fiction; I was recording 2 daily videos – one in the morning and the other one in the evening. The morning video got published on my Easy Idioms blog while the evening one went live on my Accent Adventure website. I was using my own Fluency Gym Coach Program and its Action Plan to set the overall goal and organize my spoken English self-practice sessions; I was making sure to use those newly acquired expressions also outside my video recording activities (extra self-practice sessions and also speaking with my work colleagues during the day) thus imprinting them into my active vocab permanently! And here are the videos published on this blog where I’m using all those newly acquired American phrases: American Phrases 1 – 12 American Phrases 13 – 24 American Phrases 25 – 38 American Phrases 39 -50 (more…)
FGC Goal #1: Learning American Phrases 39 – 50 using the English Harmony Method
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hello my friends! I’m nearing the end of my 50 American Phrase Acquisition Mission, and it’s been one hell of a ride :!: I’ve been recording videos day in, day out. I’ve been getting up at 5:40 AM so that I can record my morning video and publish it on Easy Idioms blog before I have to leave home for work. It’s been hard work, but at the same time I’ve also been improving my fluency and pronunciation (the evening videos got published on Accent Adventure blog where I’m working on my American pronunciation) and I don’t regret a single second of this mission! Today’s video, however, is different in that it’s created around the same concepts used in the English Harmony System, namely – spaced repetition and contextual speech pattern acquisition. Basically you can watch the video above and see me being engaged in English speech exercising in order to acquire the last 12 American English phrases/collocations/expressions: (more…)
FGC Goal #1: Using American Phrases 25 – 38 in a Self-Practice Session
FGC Goal #1: American Phrase #37: YOU GUYS HEAR ABOUT?
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Morning! Today’s American English phrase is YOU GUYS HEAR ABOUT?, and it’s a very handy phrase for situations when you’re approaching a group of people with an intent to tell them some news. And by the way, this phrase is a typical example of how we can omit words in conversational English, and while some perfectionists will consider such a grammar construct a mistake, in reality it’s exactly how people are speaking in real life! Obviously, grammatically correct way of wording this phrase would be the following: “Have you guys heard about?” or “Did you guys hear about?” – depending on context. In real life conversations, however, native English speakers quite often omit the auxiliary verbs from the beginning of sentences, and the resulting sentence is something of a crossbreed between a question and a statement. And if you think about it, this phrase YOU GUYS HEAR ABOUT? doesn’t even follow any English grammar rules! (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Grammar Construct #35: COME + VERB
FGC Goal #1: American Idiom #33: AT LOOSE ENDS
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Have you ever been AT LOOSE ENDS? Not sure what it means? Well, no wonder you find it impossible to guess the meaning of this phrase; it’s a typical English idiom and you simply have to know what it means in order to understand the meaning of it! Still, it’s quite easy to infer the meaning of any idiomatic expression from context alone, and now I want you to give it a shot. Have you ever been unable to find your place after a break-up with a boyfriend or a girlfriend? That’s when most people find themselves AT LOOSE ENDS, and that’s when it’s of the utmost importance to engage in some other activities to take your mind off the problem at hand! Now, have you got a general idea of what the idiom AT LOOSE ENDS might mean? Are you still not sure? Then here’s another example. (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Slang #31: YOU THINK YOU’RE SUCH A BIG DEAL?
FGC Goal #1: American Slang #28 GO SEE/WATCH/DO SOMETHING…
FGC Goal #1: American Slang #27: CALL BS ON…
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hello my friends foreign English speakers! Do you know what you have to do when you clearly see that someone’s been lying? You have to CALL BS ON that! And even if that person strongly believes in what they’re saying, you can still CALL BS ON their claims and statements because you have all the rights in the world to disagree with their opinion! Obviously, you have to bear in mind this is a slang phrase and it’s is used in highly informal situations only :!: (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Phrase #25: I JUST…, IS ALL!
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hello my friends! Yesterday I published the second video where I’m using multiple phrases in a single spoken English self-practice session, and this time around I did phrases 13 through to 24 which forms the second set of dozen phrases out of my 50 American Phrase Acquisition Mission. Now I’m ready to move on, and let me introduce you to the phrase number 25 which is somewhat unusual: I JUST…, IS ALL! So, in what situations can you possibly use this colloquial expression? (more…)
FGC Goal #1: Using American Phrases 13 – 24 in a Self-Practice Session
FGC Goal #1: American Slang Phrase #23: BUSTING ON SOMEONE
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Good morning everyone! :grin: Today I’m participating in a 10K run which takes place on the Curragh, in Ireland (and it’s only within five minutes driving distance from my home so it’s quite handy to get there!), but it doesn’t deter me from learning new American English phrases and recording videos while I’m preparing for the run mentally! It only stands to reason that if one wants something badly, one will do everything within one’s power to achieve that goal, and in my particular case I just HAVE TO record two videos a day no matter what happens! I also have to ignore negative attitude shown by others while I’m going about my daily business if I want to stay focused on my goals, and even if someone starts BUSTING ON ME, I simply have to let it go. It’s not always easy – especially if they’re being really mean (BUSTING ON SOMEONE might carry different connotations depending on context – there’s friendly busting and there’s also quite aggressive busting), but it’s a concept I have to embrace if I’m really serious about my English fluency development. I’ve no time for other people’s petty grievances; I’d rather stay focused on my goals and as far as today is concerned, there are quite a few things on my schedule: (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Idiom #21: FOR MY MONEY
FGC Goal #1: American Phrase #19: TELLTALE SIGN
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hi guys! This morning I’m bringing you a new American English phrase – TELLTALE SIGN. Have you not heard this one before? Well, I hadn’t come across it either until one fine day I encountered it while reading one of the GONE series books and decided to add it onto the fifty American phrases I’m learning as part of this Fluency Gym Coach Program goal! So, what is a TELLTALE SIGN? Well, this time around I’m not going to reveal a single bit of information to you in writing; you’ll have to watch the video above to find out what a TELLTALE SIGN is! Am I being mean? :-( Well, maybe, but then again, why couldn’t this blog post be different in that you simply HAVE to watch the video to find out the meaning of the phrase? Robby :grin:
FGC Goal #1: American Phrasal Verb #18: See What We Can ROUND UP
FGC Goal #1: American Phrase #16: I’VE HAD A RUN-IN WITH…
FGC Goal #1: American Idiomatic Expression #14: IT STANDS TO REASON
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hi my friends foreigners! :grin: Here’s my fourteenth American English phrase, and IT ONLY STANDS TO REASON I’ve started feeling a bit overwhelmed by this whole 50 American phrase mission for the simple reason that pretty much my entire time is taken up by video recording and editing! Now, the above sentence is probably going to merit some criticism by perfectionists because the word “reason” is repeated a couple of times in it. (more…)
FGC Goal #1: Using American Phrases 1 – 12 in a Self-Practice Session
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Hello my dear friends foreign English speakers! I’ve spent the last 6 days learning new American phraseology taken from English fiction I’m currently reading - GONE series – to be more specific! I’ve been also recording videos all of my spoken English self-practice sessions so that you can see EXACTLY how such spoken English practicing is done in real life! Here are the 12 phrases I’ve learned so far: TELL YOU WHAT IT SPELLS TROUBLE ZONED OUT HAVE YOU A BEEF WITH ME? IT HAS WRONG WRITTEN ALL OVER IT IT WAS A LONG SHOT RINGED WITH CHAIN LINK, TOPPED WITH RAZOR WIRE IN THE RIGHT ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE TO CALL SOMEONE OUT ON SOMETHING GOT A THING FOR SAY WHAT? They’re all quite American (although most of them would still be used worldwide anyway!) , and I’m choosing these phrases depending on how relevant they might be in my personal life. (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Phrase #11: GOT A THING FOR
FGC Goal #1: American Collocation #9: ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Good morning on this wonderful Saturday morning! :grin: Saturday mornings are ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE the same as working day mornings for me. I still have to record a video and publish it on my YouTube channel and write a blog post for this blog, so there’s no real difference in terms of my morning routine – getting up at 5:40 AM, having a breakfast, recording a video… The simple fact, however, that I don’t have to be ready to get into the car at 8:00 AM and go to work makes a world of difference to my mental state! Not that I wouldn’t be able to motivate myself to do the right things every day, it’s just that when you don’t have to go do work, it almost feels as if there’s something big and exciting going to happen! You mightn’t even have planned anything in particular for your day off, but it still gives that added dimension to your life! I, for example, don’t even get to sleep much longer on weekend mornings than on working day mornings; I wake up before 6:00 AM no matter which day of the week it is, yet it’s always easier for me to get out of the bed on a weekend morning for some reason or another. Anyway, today’s American English phrase is ALMOST BUT NOT QUITE and it’s one of those self-repetitious sayings that don’t necessarily make sense yet they’re handy to use in conversations for the simple reason that they sound good! (more…)
FGC Goal #1: American Collocation #7 – RINGED WITH CHAIN LINK, TOPPED WITH RAZOR WIRE
FGC Goal #1: American Slang Phrase #5 – IT HAS WRONG WRITTEN ALL OVER IT!
Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! Good Morning on this wonderful Thursday morning! I got up at 5:30 AM, had my breakfast and my morning coffee while reading a few pages out of my current book (which is the source of all these American phrases I’m learning at the moment), and then I recorded another video for you, my friends! This time around the American phrase in question is IT HAS WRONG WRITTEN ALL OVER IT, and it’s a handy way to describe a situation when you have a premonition about something and you feel at an instinct level that the situation it going to spell trouble if you don’t stay away from it! Here’s the last time I had such a feeling about something. It happened early this year – mid-January, to be more specific. I was having slight problems with my website loading time; my English Harmony blog just wouldn’t load quickly enough. It would take good two minutes for the site to load fully, so I started considering moving the entire website to a different server. (more…)
FGC Goal #1: Learning 50 American English Phrases in 25 Days!
Hello guys! :grin: As you may have heard, I recently launched a brand new English fluency coaching product called Fluency Gym Coach Program (FGC Program) , and it’s mostly centered around confidence building and creating an English fluency improving routine (as opposed to purely technical speech pattern building which is the scope of the English Harmony System). The Action Plan – a file outlining the goal setting and execution - is an integral part of the FGC Program, so I decided to showcase it by setting a goal for MYSELF. And, as you can guess by the headline of this blog post, my goal is to acquire 50 new American English phrases within the next 25 days! (more…)