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When I get too excited dealing with some issue at work, I may start stuttering or make mistakes despite the fact that normally I’m a fluent English speaker.
Emotions have the ability to get the better of us in so many other life situations that it’s actually hardly surprising it happens when a foreigner speaks in English!
Typically when I’m agitated, I’m trying to explain myself by speaking very fast, and if I’m very annoyed about something – like unfair treatment or an obvious flaw others are oblivious to and I’m the only one trying to hammer it home to every one else – I may just find it difficult to follow my racing mind with my mouth.
You may or you may not have experienced similar feelings when speaking with someone in English, but I believe you should read today’s article anyway.
Especially taking into account that such situations could be very well just around the corner for you, so you’d be much better off having been prepared for them!
Arguments – Most Common Triggers
Personally I’m quick-tempered by nature, and sometimes it’s pretty hard for me to calm down – even if it’s become obvious to myself that I’ve gone overboard with trying to prove that I’m right.
I remember I had a quarrel with one of the supervisors in my first job because I kept finding my industrial truck with a flat battery every other morning and finally I spoke to him to make sure his team plugs all the trucks into the chargers. The word exchange became quite heated and as you can imagine I couldn’t hold my temper.
How did I perform in terms of English fluency?
I did make my point; however, I couldn’t speak as fluently as I would at other times. I started stuttering, suddenly I lost the ability to use the right English words and I our conversation must have sounded quite awkward.
Another argument I can remember vividly happened in my next job. I was caught in the middle of a row between two of my coworkers, and although I was reluctant to side with either of them at first, eventually I was forced to take sides.
As the argument escalated, I found it increasingly difficult to verbalize my thoughts in English. I realized that my ability to speak decreased proportionately to my increasing agitation and frustration, and I felt helpless to deal with the situation.
Have you been having similar situations in the past?
Or maybe you’re still experiencing them regularly whenever you’re dealing with people in high-stress environment?
I know how frustrating it can be to deal with English fluency issues on top of the actual stress situation at hand, so here’s what you should bear in mind if you want to experience such situations as rarely as possible.
- First of all, you have to understand that we, foreigners,Â aren’tÂ generally capable of speaking as fluently in English when we’re emotionally affected as we would when speaking in our native language.
- Secondly, you have to realize that the only way forward for us is learning how to manage our emotions, stay calm, not to get too excited and speak slowly when we find ourselves in unpleasant situations.
In other words, we have to change our attitude and behavior in order to maintain our ability to speak fluent English at all times!
Change Your Attitude in Order to
Improve Your English Fluency
You may be inclined towards thinking that the very concept of changing your ways when speaking in English is unnatural.
You may think – “Why should I behave differently when I interact with English speaking people? Isn’t that the whole point of becoming a fluent English speaker that I can discuss things, make jokes and also argue with English speakers the very same way I’d do those things when I’m around my native relatives and friends?”
In a way, you’re correct. English fluency is defined by your ability to speak in English in everyday situations, and yes, arguing is part of our daily lives, there’s no question about it!
One, however, needs to realize one’s limitations in order to stay at a top performance. I would even say that trying to maintain unrealistic standards by all means while being very well aware of their detrimental effect sounds like a sure sign of insanity (sorry, just paraphrasing Einstein here!)
I mean – once I know that my English fluency is going to deteriorate big time if I don’t control my temper and let my emotions run wild, which is the most sensible thing to do – control myself OR allow the emotions to get the better of me just to become a struggling English speaker for the hundredth time?
You may want to go with the last option just to prove to yourself that you’re good enough as an English speaker, but in a weird twisted way it has quite the opposite effect on your English fluency!
You fight with all your might to prove you’re right in an argument, or just a heated debate in a workplace or your college, but the right English words keep evading you, your thoughts get all jumbled up, and you find it impossible to get the verbal message across to others…
OK, you would have pulled it off in your native language, but who cares?
Speaking a second language isn’t about competition, and it’s something I’ve realized long ago.
In fact, it’s because of that realization that I’ve become an English fluency expert here at EnglishHarmony. As I said previously – by grasping our boundaries we can actually perform at our best, and in our case it’s being aware of the different English fluency issues we’re having and taking appropriate action.
I, for instance, still use different English fluency management techniques to this day.
Yes, I am around English speakers all the time and I speak English fluently, but that doesn’t mean I don’t experience any English fluency related issues any more.
The difference is, however, that I know how to prevent them at the very onset by avoiding certain things, and one of them actually is avoiding getting too excited and agitated when opinions are clashing 😡
And you know what?
It has actually helped me to become a better person!
One who won’t say anything rash because sometimes we come to regret words said without much consideration.
One who listens to the other person’s opinion and understands details that might escape attention otherwise.
But if I ever need outlet for my emotional buildup… well… I can always do it when I’m alone and use some bad language! 😉
P.S. Would you like to find out why I’mÂ highlightingÂ 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!