Robby Kukurs

I’m Robby, and I’m a non-native English speaker. Throughout my entire life I’ve always wanted to speak in English fluently, but because of the way English is taught in schools, I always struggled with my spoken English.

I couldn't learn to speak fluent English for 5 years - read about what I was doing to learn to speak fluently HERE - are YOU in the same situation?

Then, one fine day, after years of constant pursuit of English fluency, I realized the key aspect of spoken English improvement – learning English phrases and word combinations instead of studying grammar rules and trying to construct sentences in your head from scratch!

If you’re interested in improving your English fluency too, please check out the English Harmony System which is a product I created to help all my fellow foreigners to better their spoken English and achieve so much more in professional, social and personal life.

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For those foreign English speakers whose English understanding, writing and grammar is already good but they're struggling with spoken English!

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Just a Handful of English Phrases Will Enable You to Speak so Much More Fluently (Article #2)!

Click HERE to read the FIRST article made up of English phrases! Hi guys! Did you know you don’t need to learn MASSIVE amount of specific vocabulary in order to be able to discuss various subjects with ease? You need to focus on acquiring idiomatic expressions and phrases instead, and they will enable you to talk about a wide variety of topics! As far as specific vocab is concerned – well, sure enough, you can’t do without it! But the thing is – you can get by using only a handful of industry terms while letting the idiomatic expressions make up most of your speech. Now, I’m going to pick a random subject – Forex trading – and let’s see what the specific vocab vs idiomatic expression ratio is in the written piece I’m going to create! ;-) (more…)

Relationship Between Written and Spoken English is Really Weird!

Over the years I’ve been working in a number of jobs where I’ve been dealing with both non-native and native English speakers. My work colleagues. My superiors – managers, team leaders, supervisors – you name it! Our customers as well. Quite naturally, I’ve been constantly communicating with them. I’ve been engaging in all the necessary work-related verbal communication. I’ve been chatting with them during my break times. I’ve been participating in meetings. I’ve been sending dozens of e-mails a day to a lot of different people. Also, I’ve been running this blog since 2007 – you can do the math! – and I’m constantly dealing with my blog visitors e-mails and inquiries, not to mention my Fluency Star clients I coach via Skype. So, as you can imagine, I’ve made a lot of interesting observations in terms of people’s ability to speak and write. Did you know, for example, that judging by some native English speakers’ writing style, you’d think they’re just beginner English learners? Yes, it’s totally true and I’ve come across such people time and time again! And to be totally honest with you, sometimes their writing has been so bad that it’s made it next to impossible to figure out what they’ve actually meant in their e-mails :!: So, would you like to read more about my interesting observations in relation to English speaking, writing, non-native and native English speakers? Then find a comfortable seat, make yourself a cup of coffee, and keep reading this article! ;-) (more…)

Robby is Back!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PiU__kPihHc Hi guys! ;-) I've been away for a good while because I had to do a lot of video editing for my new product Fluency Gym Coach Program, and I simply couldn't handle it all. I tried to do both blog posting and video editing at the same time, but I failed miserably for the simple reason that multitasking requires you to be able to quickly switch between different tasks. Well, it’s not really a problem when it comes to performing relatively simple, technical tasks; content creation, however, is a whole new ballgame. It requires a great deal of inspiration and creativity, and it’s not that easy to switch it on and off at your will. Basically I’d gone into a totally different mindset for the last two weeks because I focused solely on editing Fluency Gym Coach Program videos and creating the final product. Now that the work is almost complete and I only need to put the final touches on the Fluency Gym website, I’m back to create regular articles and videos for this blog – and not only! (more…)

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English Idiomatic Expression: “Couldn’t Put My Finger On It”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lD5vuw0kXKU Hello my fellow foreign English speaker! Today’s English idiomatic expression is a real idiom which means you actually have to know what it means or else you won’t know how to use it and you’ll have a hard time understanding what another English speaker means when they say things like “Yes, there’s something weird about the place but I can’t really put my finger on it…” Well… It’s not that it would be impossible to infer the meaning of this expression out of the context alone – in fact, I’ve always been encouraging you guys to acquire new vocabulary and phraseology contextually. It’s just that this particular expression is figurative speech and you have to imagine performing the actual activity – putting your finger onto something – in order to fully understand why this phrase is used. (more…)

What Happens When You Don’t Learn English Contextually?

The More English You Know, The… Less You Know?!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7qdHloilI0 VIDEO SCRIPT BELOW: Hello boys and girls and welcome back to my video blog! I'm Robby from EnglishHarmony.com and I'm your fluency mentor, and today's video is going to be dedicated to the following subject: Sometimes as you go about your English learning and improvement routine you will kind of realize that THE MORE YOU KNOW, the less fluent you become! If you reminisce about days gone by, a couple years ago probably - when you just started learning the English language, when you knew not so much - basically when your knowledge was quite limited - you could actually say a whole lot more than now, when your knowledge is quite thorough and profound and you know a lot of synonyms describing the same abstract concepts and things and so on and so forth, you sometimes find that you actually struggle to say anything at all! But in the very early stages of your English fluency improvement and learning attempts you could say a whole lot more, or at least so it seems, right? So why this funny thing is happening? There's a very easy explanation for that, my friends: it's SYNONYMS, English vocabulary in general and how you've learned it - that's what it all boils down to :!: (more…)

Building English Vocabulary – Part 1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlwBcmydYbo Vocabulary Building Part 2 | Vocabulary Building Part 3 Are you considering building up your English vocabulary? Well, it’s time to get started boys and girls! Let’s take out our English dictionaries and write down the new English word that you’ve just heard for the first time. It can also happen that you’ve already heard the word a few times and been wondering since what it actually means. In either case, you just put it down in your dictionary followed by a translation in your language. Now you can repeat the word a few times till it settles in your memory. Nice! Another word added to your English vocabulary! Another surefire way to build your English vocabulary is using flashcards. Just carry them with you and whenever you get a chance – memorize and repeat new English words. Sure your spoken English will improve in no time! Well, not really... It took me years and more than 7000 English words memorized using the techniques mentioned above to realize it’s making very little difference to my English speech. I had grown my vocabulary a great deal, no doubt about that. I new all those English words, I could understand them whenever they were used by others, and I could enjoy understanding the English language fully. Watching films, reading fiction, listening radio shows and news – and all that in English. Not bad, is it? (more…)

3 Things ANY Foreigner Can Implement To Boost Their English Communication Skills!

1. Stop agreeing if you didn’t fully understand what was said to you! On way too many occasions foreign English speakers will just pretend having understood the other person and nod in agreement – but it may potentially damage the whole conversation and result in an even bigger embarrassment than if you just asked your conversation partner to say it again! There are many other English phrases you can use in such situations other than the overused phrase “Sorry, I don’t understand”; if you only ever respond to something you don’t fully get using that phrase, you may indeed make an impression that you’re not being able to speak English properly. Partially it’s because natives rarely say “I don’t understand” when they haven’t heard what’s being said, and partially it’s due to the fact that when a foreign English speaker says “I don’t understand”, most native English speakers will assume that that person’s English isn’t good enough. I know it’s just not the case on most occasions because we foreigners, just like native English speakers, might not get the message that has been communicated to us simply because we didn’t hear it properly (background noise, distinct accent of the speaker, very fast speech etc.) and it’s got nothing to do with our English listening skills. (more…)

Is English Harmony GOOD and All the Rest is BAD?

FGC Goal #1: American Idiom #21: FOR MY MONEY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8mUyXFfs26g Current Goal: Learn 50 American Phrases in 25 Days! FOR MY MONEY, learning various English idiomatic expressions is the best way to do all the following: grow your English vocabulary; learn English Grammar naturally; develop your ability to speak fluently! Why? It’s simple enough – when you acquire speech patterns instead of individual words, you don’t have to construct English sentences in your head every time you speak. You don’t have to apply grammar rules as you go along. You simply say out loud ready-to-go phrases, and today’s phrase FOR MY MONEY is no different in that it’s a speech pattern used by native English speakers in America. If you learn it and use it, your speech is going to sound so much more native-like, and you’ll also acquire that “sixth sense” which is necessary in order to use English vocabulary in more than just one way. Let’s take the word “money”. (more…)

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What’s The Worst That Could Happen If You Make a Mistake When Speaking in English

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lH_E5ZE9mTE Hi my fellow foreigners – tonight is the Halloween night and I think it would be only fair if I gave you a fright! I’m going to use the biggest fear of all foreign English speakers, and I’ll do my best to scare the hell out of you! So what is this fear I’m so certain will have such an effect on you? Well… We all fear making mistakes when speaking English, don’t we? We fear it so much that we become very conscious of our speech thus making even more stupid mistakes. It’s a self-perpetuating mental state and personally I’ve gone through these issues countless times in the past and I know how depressing, annoying and scary it is. Are you ready? So here it goes – a list of 20 things that might possibly happen if you make a mistake when speaking English! You’d better brace yourself because as you’ll see it’s safer not to open your mouth at all than trying to say something in English and face the dire consequences… (more…)

How to Organize English Phrases for Optimal Learning

The moment you start reading my blog, you can’t help noticing that I’m highlighting specific word groups in red. These word groups are idiomatic expressions or the so-called collocations, and they’re very useful for all foreign English speakers for the following reasons: They allow us to speak using native-like English speech patterns; They enable us to group words together thus avoiding hesitant speech; They render translation unnecessary thus facilitating overall English fluency. For best results, you should incorporate such and similar idiomatic expressions into your spoken English practicing routine, but here’s the million dollar question: “How to organize all those phrases for optimal learning?” Now, before we get into the nitty-gritty of how exactly you should organize English phraseology for the optimal learning experience, let me remind you that I’ve already done all that work for you :!: I’ve created a unique fluency improving program called the English Harmony System and it took me a good few months to organize hundreds upon hundreds of idiomatic expressions which provide the framework for almost a hundred speech exercising video lessons. Basically you can save yourself all the hassle of organizing all your phrases and you can start practicing your spoken English RIGHT NOW! But what if you’ve already been using my product and now you’d like to keep practicing on your own? As we all know, spoken English improvement is a lifelong process, and it only stands to reason you would want to keep working on your English phraseology for the rest of your life, right? So for those of you interested in taking your fluency improvement to the next level, here’s a few ways of organizing your English phraseology for your spoken English practice sessions. (more…)

Want To Seriously Improve Your Spoken English? Find a Hobby For Yourself!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-bcbqk6OmA Are you into something? Are you a big sports fan and you follow the English Premier League or National Football League and work out in a gym three times a week? Are you mad into photography and you always show up at parties and other occasions with a camera strapped over your neck? Or maybe you’re big into reading and you spend all your free time reading crime fiction? Well, even if you’re not interested in anything I just mentioned, you definitely have some sort of interest in something that can be classified as a hobby. Even if you spend the biggest part of your free time playing Xbox or just watching telly, it’s something you can use in order to improve your English fluency, I’m sure of it! (more…)

3 Big Reasons Why the English Language is More Relevant Than Ever!

English Has Brought the World Together!

Sachin, who is a customer of mine and a prolific contributor to my YouTube channel, inspired me to write this article, here's part of the comment he left on my YouTube video where I'm arguing against the prevalent view on Americans as being lazy language learners: One should accept that English language has contributed to the world more than any other language. English has brought the world together. English is not just British or American’s language anymore - it's the world’s language. Knowledge of the world got available to everyone only after converted in English! Well, we can all argue ad nauseam whether the English language is taking over the world, is it having a detrimental effect on smaller languages or not, and also accuse Americans for being lazy and ignorant when it comes to learning foreign languages. All that is actually IRRELEVANT when we consider the simple fact that the English language has indeed brought the entire world together in a lot of different ways and we, foreigners, are undoubtedly much better off learning it and speaking it as opposed to constantly moaning and complaining about the Evil Empire of English which is soon going to obliterate the smaller nations and countries! But in case my words are making your blood boil – consider this: We need to separate POLITICS from the LANGUAGE when discussing such matters! Just think about the German language and the activities that Germany was involved during WW2, for example. No sane person would condone what was done during those years – atrocities brought upon the world by the fascist regime were outrageous, to say the least. Do we hate the German language for the criminal past of the country that it represents, however? Of course we don’t! Same goes with the English language. A lot of people just follow the mainstream opinion of the US being the evil empire and tarnish the English language with the same brush :mad: Yes, there’s no denying that here’s a lot of controversy about the warfare the country is getting itself involved in – mostly when it suits its foreign policies (pursuit for energy sources, expansion of American companies and interests in the war-torn countries etc). The English language, however, BELONGS TO THE WORLD - just like Sachin pointed out. It belongs to anyone who speaks it! I love English, and when I go about my daily spoken English practice, I don’t considering myself as a traitor of humanity just because I happen to like a language that’s being spoken by people who are involved in activities that we mightn’t approve of. As a matter of fact, it’s also spoken by millions upon millions GOOD and BRILLIANT people all over the world! It’s actually ridiculous, when you think about it, that so many people associate the English language with something NEGATIVE or something that they believe to be a bad thing. If speakers of all world languages abandoned speaking them by virtue of tyrants and murderers having spoken them, there’d be not a single language left in the world! Or if you believe that the English language spreads like a virus amongst indigenous languages and brings all the bad things with it – fast food, crime and drug abuse then you must be seriously deluded… It’s not the language that does it. It’s the Western way of life, if you like, but it’s not the language that is to be blamed for it. Hadn't it been the English language that is spoken by the world’s superpowers linked to all the “bad” things (obesity and fast food culture, consumerism and using the third world for easy and quick profits), it could have just as easily been French, Dutch, Spanish or German! Anyway, as I said – we could be arguing about these matters till cows come home because it’s very difficult to change people’s opinion on a certain subject. Better let’s talk about how EXACTLY the English language has brought the world together :!: (more…)

Using Short English Words AT, OF, A, THE in Conversations

What I’ve Realized Having Lived in an English Speaking Country for 14 Years

Here’s how to improve your spoken English when reading this article: read it out loud, then read out loud the collocations highlighted in red 10 times each to memorize them, then look away from the monitor and try and say 3 sample sentences for each of those collocations! For best results record your speech so that you can go back, spot any mistakes you might have made, and then do some more spoken English practice by correcting yourself! Related articles: Emigration to an English Speaking Country: My Honest Opinion Top 15 Invaluable Pieces of Advice for Foreigners Settling Down in an English Speaking Country What To Do If You Can’t Speak With Natives in an English Speaking Country If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ve probably heard me talking about living in Ireland which, as you may already know, is an English speaking country. In hindsight, I can say that it’s been one hell of a transformation – I’ve gone from a foreigner who’s barely capable of speaking conversational English to an English fluency mentor who’s teaching other foreign English speakers. I’ve experienced all the ups and downs one can encounter while living in an English speaking country. I’ve been told I’m a useless English speaker. I’ve been in all sorts of embarrassing situations – starting from not being able to order a meal in McDonald’s and ending with screwing up job interviews because of my inability to provide a coherent answer. But the great thing is that now, with all that experience under my belt, I can tell my students with the utmost certainty what kind of an attitude they need to adopt in order to survive and thrive as English speakers living in an English speaking country. It feels so great being in a position to help out others, and frankly speaking, I don’t regret anything that’s happened to me while I was a struggling English speaker. I like to think that everything that happens, happens for a reason, and I just HAD to endure all the hardship and suffering to emerge a fluent English speaker equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to help others who find themselves in the same boat. But now, let me tell you what I’ve realized over the 14 year long stay in Ireland; as you can imagine, I know a thing or two about life in an English speaking country! (more…)

30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course- Day 5- Striking Appearance or Resemblance?

This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz")); Hey there everyone, I know you are enjoying this series. I know that. . . . It is for this reason I bring a new chapter every day of this Free course called “30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course” where we learn some vocabulary daily about a topic with context and examples, and that’s we are going to do today too. (more…)

Be Specific – Don’t Try to Make a General Statement When Explaining Something in English!

Fluent English can ONLY be acquired by learning IDIOMATIC EXPRESSIONS - and that's why I'm going to highlight them for you in RED! 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! Transcript Below: Hello everybody and welcome back to Robby's English Harmony video blog. It's been a while guys since I recorded my last video for the simple reason that I've been really, really busy at work and I have to study on top of my daily duties at work as well so it's really hectic lifestyle to say the least. And then when I'm coming home at night it's quite late as well and then I have to do all the other stuff, prepare for the next day, pack my food, prepare my clothing, walk the dog, whatever, respond to my emails, right? You guys are asking a lot of questions on a daily basis! So unfortunately my video recording days when I used to record at least one video a day or every few days are over. But it doesn't mean that I'm stopping it altogether. Not at all. It's quite the opposite actually, right? I'm actually enjoying this process immensely and for too many reasons. First of all, I love helping you guys. I love talking to my audience and obviously you love it, too. And secondly, it helps me improve my own spoken English, right? That's the way it goes. Anyhow, I'm having my morning coffee. Morning to you all! Cheers! (more…)

Do You Really NEED to Improve Your Spoken English?

30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course- Day 12- Fifth Wheel

This article is part of the 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course. Sign up here to get every lesson in your inbox for free: (function(d, s, id) { var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id; js.src = "//forms.aweber.com/form/28/1528169428.js"; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); }(document, "script", "aweber-wjs-gh9mm2tmz")); Hey there everybody, How are you doing? Well, I am doing good and I hope the same with you on the other side of the screen. I am so proud that we have reached this far and I can guarantee you 100% that by the end of this "Free 30-day Vocabulary Acquisition Course”, you will notice a major improvement in your active vocabulary provided you complete this course sincerely and do not miss to practice all expressions with your own examples. (more…)

English Idiomatic Expression: “Run the Risk of…”

7 Reasons Why Having Been Born a Foreigner Is One of the Best Things That Ever Happened to You!

I have a friend who’s made incredible achievements in terms of his professional life and he’s also very comfortable when it comes to his finances, but quite often he would tell me how much more he would have achieved if he’d been born in an English speaking country. While I can’t deny that there’s a lot of truth to what he’s saying, I can also tell you that being a foreigner isn’t always a handicap – especially if you know what you want to achieve in life! Here I came up with a list of things that should open your eyes and make you realize how lucky you actually are having been born a foreigner! (more…)

Do You Force Native English Accent When Speaking?

You’re speaking English with someone. You try to pronounce the words like they stand in the Oxford dictionary. You suddenly mispronounce one word, then another. Then you get confused and can’t speak fluently at all! Does this scenario sound familiar? It was happening to me all the time before I hadn’t realized a simple thing… This may sound really strange, but if you don’t force correct English accent when speaking English, you will feel that you can speak much better and more fluently! :shock: Don’t get me wrong – correct English pronunciation is important to speak the language and, of course, make others understand you. What I meant here is - don’t try make yourself sound like a native English speaker by all means – most likely it will hamper your speech even to a greater extent. Instead of focusing on the correct pronunciation and native English accent just speak and if you allow your native accent to surface a little bit – there’s nothing wrong with that! Remember - the key factors for improving spoken English and English fluency are to maintain a successful mindset and not try to use artificial vocabulary – just go for simple words you’ve learnt a long time ago! Personally I find that speaking with a slight native accent of mine I can maintain the fastest and most fluent English speech. Isn’t it odd? Well, I think it is! And here are a couple of tips on how to forget about sounding like a grammar book and focusing on live English speech instead! :idea: Next time you speak English try to use your own language’s pronunciation when speaking English. Just let it go and don’t try to force the super-correct English accent. It may sound really funny – like Italian mobsters from mafia movies – but you’ll discover that this way your fluency increases! :idea: Nothing else counts now but your confidence, don’t bother yourself with thinking what your speech sounds like. The most important thing is that now you can speak fluently and your mind is being exercised in a similar way you exercise your muscles in the gym. :idea: When you’ve spoken in this manner for a while, just stop and forget about English fluency and anything related to English. Do something you like for a while. When you speak with native English speakers next time you’ll discover that oddly your fluency has improved a bit! Robby P.S. Are you ready to get on the fast track to spoken English fluency? Check out my English Harmony System HERE!