Real English Conversations Podcast | Conversaciones Reales en Ingles
70. Long Weekends - Learn Real English From A Real Life Conversation

70. Long Weekends - Learn Real English From A Real Life Conversation

June 1, 2021

Real English Conversation About Long Weekends

Everybody loves long weekends! It's a chance to get away for a few days or just have an extra day to relax. Find out Amy & Curtis typically spend a long weekend compared to other people that they know and learn real English from a real life conversation.  

Read and Listen to this Lesson: Get the Latest Podcast Lesson Here

 

🌞 Summer to Fluency Sale On Now! 🌺

Take your speaking fluency to the next level this summer by enroling in one of our Fluency Programs. We have a special promotion running until June 10th where you can get a FREE MONTH when you join any 3-month program. We have limited space available, so don't wait to check out the special Summer to Fluency Sale!

 

Learn Real English From A Real Life Conversation 

https://mcdn.podbean.com/mf/web/a9gfb6/Long_Weekends_Podcast8u2cy.mp3

 

Transcription:

Amy: Hi, everybody, my name is Amy, and I'm from Real English Conversations, and I'm here with Curtis. And today we're going to be having a conversation talking about long weekends. So, Curtis, what exactly is a long weekend?

Curtis: A long weekend is usually a weekend where there's an extra day off and that day off is either going to be before the weekend, on a Friday or after, on a Monday. It could be a national holiday. It can be just an extra day off your boss might give you to make it a three-day weekend or a long weekend.

Amy: Yeah, exactly, and I think that we have one long weekend that's actually four days, and that's the Easter long weekend. So, we have the Good Friday on the Friday and Saturday and then Easter Sunday. But that's a normal Sunday. We normally have that day off. And then Easter Monday is another national holiday. So, what about we have some holidays that are actually specific to the day. Like we have some holidays that fall on a Monday. It's like the first Monday of the month, for example.

Amy: But we have other holidays like Canada Day, for example, which is on July 1st. That one can fall on any day of the week, right? It depends on the day of the calendar. So how would we talk about that day, for example, if Canada was on a Wednesday, like how would you talk about it or describe that day to somebody?

Curtis: It would be Canada day Wednesday or holiday Wednesday. It would be your ...

Amy: Yeah, it's a holiday on Wednesday.

Curtis: It's a holiday.

Amy: Yeah, it's a day off. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah. And at least in Canada, again, we have provincial holidays, we have national holidays.

>> Read and Listen to the Full Podcast Lesson: Get the Latest Podcast Lesson Here 

 

Other English Podcast Conversation Lessons:

69. Finally Speak without Fear and Gain Confidence [Part 3/3]

69. Finally Speak without Fear and Gain Confidence [Part 3/3]

April 30, 2021

Finally Speak without Fear

Finally Speak English without Fear

Of course you know that to speak English, you need to practice. But EVERY time you have to speak in English it feels stressful, uncomfortable and awkward. 

Is there an easier way to improve speaking without having to feel stressed out with each interaction you have in English? 

In this final episode, I'll explain my experience with speaking and why it was so difficult for me to gain confidence (because I did it the difficult way). Then, I'll explain the easier, safer, and faster way to practice speaking while increasing your confidence at the same time!

 

**Get the Free Lesson Notes and Activities for this Lesson**

 

English Fluency Programs

Get your English to the next level faster by getting the specific help you need from expert fluency teachers and courses that are designed to get you USING your English!

Interested in our programs? Learn more here: https://realenglishconversations.com/fluency-programs

68. When Low-Confidence Takes Control [Part 2/3]

68. When Low-Confidence Takes Control [Part 2/3]

April 29, 2021

When Low-Confidence Takes Contro

Take Control over Low-Confidence when Speaking in English

Feeling anxious and scared to speak English happens to a lot of people. And that fear makes it very difficult to practice your speaking skills. 

So, how can you break this cycle? In this podcast lesson, Amy will explain her fear of making phone calls and the steps that helped her to overcome this problem.

Additionally, you will hear how one of Amy's students overcame her fear of speaking in less than one month! This is a story that will be a big inspiration if you often avoid speaking because you don't feel comfortable speaking and your confidence is low. 

 

**Get the Free Lesson Notes and Activities for this Lesson**

 

English Fluency Programs

Get your English to the next level faster by getting the specific help you need from expert fluency teachers and courses that are designed to get you USING your English!

Interested in our programs? Learn more here: https://realenglishconversations.com/fluency-programs

67. The Broken Connection: Listening to Speaking [Part 1/3]

67. The Broken Connection: Listening to Speaking [Part 1/3]

April 28, 2021

The Broken Connection Between Listening to English and Speaking

Most students say they want to improve their speaking, but... they rarely practice speaking due to low confidence. In this podcast series (of 3 episodes), I'll be explaining the connection between speaking and low-confidence.

In this first episode, I'll be explaining that broken connection and giving you a special activity to help you understand the reason why you can't USE the words you know even though you understand them perfectly when you HEAR them.

Students with low confidence usually practice their English by reading and listening. While those are good ways of improving, there is a missing step that makes it very difficult to improve your speaking skills.

 

**Get the Free Lesson Notes and Activities for this Lesson**

 

English Fluency Programs

Get your English to the next level faster by getting the specific help you need from expert fluency teachers and courses that are designed to get you USING your English! Interested in our programs? Learn more here: https://realenglishconversations.com/fluency-programs

66. Cell Phones - Everyday English Conversation about Technology

66. Cell Phones - Everyday English Conversation about Technology

March 9, 2021
In only 20 years, cell phones have gone from being an item only a few 'cool people' had to an item that nearly everyone has (and can't imagine leaving the house without it)!
 
In this fun conversation lesson, Curtis and Amy talk about their first cell phones and also share some funny stories to show how important cell phones are and how cell phones can save the day!

 

Transcription:

Amy: Hi, everybody, this is Amy, and I'm here with Curtis from Real English Conversations, and today we're going to be talking all about cell phones.

So, Curtis, why don't you get us started? Can you tell us a little bit about your very first cell phone and whether or not you were excited to have something like that?

Curtis: My very first cell phone, wow, this is going back quite a ways. It was a flip phone, they called it, so it had a flipped lid, and that's how you would power it on to make a phone call, and it had an antenna on it as well. So you had to pull out this antenna to get a clearer kind of call quality, and it wasn't really that great, it wasn't the best. And then, of course, to end your call, you flip the lid closed, push down the antenna, and that was about it. I don't think I even had text messaging on it. I just made phone calls.

But I was super excited because it was cutting edge technology and it was something new and exciting, like you started to see people having them in their hands and talking. And I thought, I need one of those. I got to have one of those. So what I did was I went out and bought one and I thought, yeah, my life is more modern now.

End of Transcription Sample. To get access to the full transcription for this lesson and the other 60+ conversation lessons currently available, register as a Real English Conversations member here.

 

Get Podcast Transcriptions, Online Courses, and Have Live Conversations with Us!

Real English Conversations is a website for students that want to start USING their English skills! We offer a mix of real conversations you can join to practice speaking and excellent online lessons that can be studied anytime.

Members of our website get immediate access to:

  • Join conversations with Curtis and Amy to discuss interesting topics
  • All the online courses to quickly improve speaking, listening and increase vocabulary
  • All the transcripts and exercises related to each podcast lesson!

Learn More about the membership options here

 

Other English Podcast Conversation Lessons:

65. Vocabulary for Speaking Fluency - Improve Your English

65. Vocabulary for Speaking Fluency - Improve Your English

February 23, 2021

Want to improve your English?

With so many words to learn, it can be difficult to know which words you need to learn to 'speak fluently'. In this lesson, I'll explain an easy way to identify which words are worth the effort to learn first AND will also help you to speak English with more fluency faster! 

 

 

Transcription:
Amy: Hi, everybody, this is Amy from realenglishconversations.com, and today I have another one of these advice podcasts where I'm going to give you some advice about how to learn English in a more efficient way and to make sure that you're focusing on the right things, so that you can start making progress forward faster with your English and working toward fluency.

So today I'm going to talk about something that's related to learning the right type of vocabulary to help you become fluent and really talking about the most common error that I see students making over and over and over again that I'm working with.

To get started I just need to explain how students generally at an intermediate or an advanced level or any level really think about vocabulary and how they're studying English.

And generally, with most people, if you're reading a newspaper or maybe a novel or you're watching a TV series, if you hear a brand-new word, you're probably going to write it down or look it up in a dictionary and try to learn it. And that's sort of our strategy for learning new vocabulary, and that's why it's called new vocabulary.

But what happens is when we reach this intermediate to advanced level of the language, we have this gigantic pile of new vocabulary that we've taken the time to learn, but then we're not really able to use any of it, and we realize that a lot of the vocabulary that we learned and use that precious brain space and that memory power isn't exactly useful either.

End of Transcription Sample. To get access to the full transcription for this lesson and the other 60+ conversation lessons currently available, register as a Real English Conversations member here.

 

Do you Want to Improve Your English?

Amy and Curtis are experts in helping our students to improve their speaking and listening skills, improve confidence and reach their goals faster. Learn more about Private Lessons with us here

 

Get ALL the English Lessons & Online Courses

Real English Conversations is a website for students that want to start USING their English skills! Join our WhatsApp group to practice speaking and get excellent online lessons that can be studied anytime.

Members of our website get immediate access to:

  • All the online courses to quickly improve speaking, listening, and increase vocabulary
  • All the transcripts and exercises related to each podcast lesson!
  • Our Member-Only WhatsApp Speaking Practice Group

Learn More about the membership options here

 

Other English Podcast Conversation Lessons:

 

64. Ferry Boat Rides | Canadian English Conversations

64. Ferry Boat Rides | Canadian English Conversations

February 9, 2021

This is another one of our Canadian English conversations where we are going to share some of our memories and adventures from travelling around Canada on a ferry boat. These boats are part of the transportation and highway network in areas where cars and people need to get across rivers, lakes, and even sections of ocean!

 

Canadian English Conversations About Ferry Boat Rides

Get a copy of the transcription of our most recent podcast emailed to you now! Go to this page to request your copy of the audio file and transcript:  https://realenglishconversations.com/rec-podcast/

https://mcdn.podbean.com/mf/web/tyh4qs/64_Ferry_Boats_Podcast73vmh.mp3

 

English Fluency Programs

Our Fluency Programs are perfect for students like you that want to improve their speaking fluency, develop strong listening skill, and to learn the right type of vocabulary that will help you to communicate in English with confidence.

This program is completely different than anything you have tried before! You will have access to online courses, conversation practices with a teacher, one-to-one lessons, and even daily speaking challenges that are reviewed by a teacher to give you corrections and feedback.

Get your English to the next level faster by getting the specific help you need from expert fluency teachers and courses that are designed to get you USING your English!

Interested in our programs? Learn more here: https://realenglishconversations.com/fluency-programs

 

Other English Podcast Conversation Lessons:

 

About Amy & Curtis - English Teachers from Canada

Our fun conversations are based on interesting stories and adventrues that we have had. To make sure that you get exposed to authentic Canadian English, we speak in a totally natural way, including our mistakes and thinking noises.

What is the difference between American English and Canadian English?

In Canada, we speak 'American English' (includes all of North America) but we have a few words that are uniquely Canadian such as toque (wool hat), smokey (sausage), etc. Canadians usually speak clearly and have a neutral accent that is very similar to the western states of the USA. We are from the beautiful province of British Columbia which is located in the most western part of Canada.

Pt. 4/4: Supercharge Your Motivation Again!

Pt. 4/4: Supercharge Your Motivation Again!

January 27, 2021

Feeling excited and motivated to learn is a key part of maintaining your energy to be consistent! In this episode, I'm going to give you a 7-day action plan to get your motivation back (even if you've completely lost it at this point...) and also to finish the week excited to continue working on your English.

Note: For one of the 'example activiites' that I mention in this lesson to help with speaking fluency, I recommended contacting someone to have a conversation with them. If you need someone to practice with, why not book a lesson with us? I'll even give you 50% off coupon to book a trial lesson! Send me an email and ask me for a special coupon code for podcast listeners. Send an email to: contact@realenglishconversations.com (valid until Jan 31, 2021)

**Each of these podcasts will have the transcription available so that you can listen and read along.**

Listen to Part 1: Kickstarting Your English - Identify your reason to speak English well, the first steps to take, and setting a clear focus for the next 90 days.

Part 2: Navigating the Path to Fluency - From intermediate to advanced and beyond to fluency is a very complicated and confusing part of language learning. I'll explain how to handle this and keep you focused on the most important things.

Part 3: Be More Consistent with this Powerful Trick - I'll talk about a powerful idea that will help you to be consistent to reach your goals without disappointing yourself or other people.

Part 4: Breaking out of Low-Motivation - - This episode you are listening to!

Important Links:

 

Transcription (Read and Listen to this Podcast)

This is the Real English Conversations podcast where you'll find the lessons and advice you need to be able to confidently use your English in the real world. Hi, everybody, this is Amy Whitney from realenglishconversations.com, and this episode is our fourth and final episode where I'm doing a lesson series that's really based around motivation being consistent and really understanding how to get to that next level with your English learning. So if you haven't yet listened to the first three lessons, I strongly recommend going back and starting from the first lesson because I have some really great tips and everything is going to make a lot more sense when you're doing it in order together.

[00:55.775]

Today, we're going to be dealing with a very, very common problem that language learners face at one time or another, or probably several times. And this is related to having low motivation. The times where I have seen low motivation in myself are generally when I've taken a bit of a break or I haven't been very consistent with my studying. Or sometimes when you're stuck on one of those horrible language plateaus where you're just trying to do everything you can and it doesn't seem like anything you're doing is really making any progress, that can be really frustrating.

[01:34.625]

And after a while, it kind of leaves you unmotivated to try to continue moving forward. For me in general, when I'm not very motivated to learn a language, I usually focus on things that don't really help me very much. I tell myself that I need to practice, I need to learn, I need to do something. And then I choose activities that don't really give me a lot of value or a lot of benefit, or I open up my computer with the intention of studying something and then I usually end up on YouTube and watching a video either in English or Spanish.

[02:10.565]

But that's not really the type of behavior that is going to get me that progress that I'm looking for. And the truth is that this demotivated feeling that you have where you really don't want to study like it feels more like a chore rather than something that you enjoy. When we let this carry on for too long, it usually leads to a period where you stop studying altogether. There are times where a short break of maybe one or two weeks is what you need just to give your mind a rest and really get your energy back.

[02:45.995]

But in most cases, if you're feeling unmotivated for a very long period of time, this is probably going to lead to taking a break from your English studies. That is just because you don't want to do it and you don't see the benefit of doing it. And the longer that that break continues, the more difficult it is to get started again. And you can imagine if you take a break for six months or a year, you can lose a lot of what you've worked so hard to get.

[03:20.825]

Like really think about how long have you been studying English at this point? How would you feel if the last year or two years of the progress that you've made, all of those words and phrases and effort that you've been making to try to improve your skills? If you lost all of that progress just because you took a break for six or eight months, how would that make you feel? I know for me personally, that's something that's really, really hard to know that you've put in so much time, so much effort, so much dedication, and that you have a really clear goal.

[03:59.735]

You know what you're doing. You have a strong reason why you're doing it. Like I'm not learning Spanish as a hobby. I live abroad. I need to do this. And it's so frustrating to think about, oh, man, I've been taking Spanish lessons for like a year, twice a week, and my level has gone down. Like, that's not a very motivating thing to work with. So I feel your pain. I know what you're going through and I'm going through this process right now and I'm going to share exactly what I'm going to do.

[04:34.235]

And the same thing you can do to give a little kick start to your motivation and to really start to feel like you're making progress again. OK, so here's the idea. This is the solution to really fix that low motivation, you need to do a series of small activities that are not too difficult and usually something that you enjoy that's going to lead to you making quick progress and noticeable results. We need to try to do this within probably about seven days because the first day is going to be difficult.

[05:13.115]

You're not going to be motivated, but you're going to. Figure out your plan the second day you're going to do it out of willpower, meaning you don't want to, but you realize what you're trying to do. So you show up and you do the activity. But by the third day, you need to see some progress. You need to feel that what you're doing is making a difference with your language skills. And when you start to feel that it's going to get easier for day four, day five and six.

[05:44.455]

Now, you might be thinking right now. OK, great, Amy. That totally makes sense. I just need to pick an activity. I need to work at it and I'll probably get some motivation. And yes and no, we need to really make sure that you're picking an activity that is going to lead you to see progress in an area that you've really wanted to see progress. You need to be able to notice those results. And this is something that a lot of students need some guidance on.

[06:16.945]

For example, when I ask people how they want to improve their speaking, sometimes they tell me that they listen to podcasts of our conversations like this podcast, because Curtis and I have conversations and yeah, that's cool for listening, but it's not really going to be very effective for speaking. So this can be an area where you might want to have a little bit of guidance so that you're working on the right things that are actually going to give you results for the skill that you want to improve.

[06:48.475]

But just to give you a really quick example, if you're somebody that wants to improve your speaking, I'm probably going to tell you to just book a 30 minute conversation practice session with a teacher, or if you have a conversation practice partner, call them up or send them a message and tell them that you'd like to schedule a time to talk for seven days from now. And what that's going to do immediately is to give you this feeling of, oh, no, what have I done?

Get 50% off a Trial Lesson >> Send me an email asking for this coupon from the 'Supercharge Your Motivation' podcast. Email: contact@realenglishconversations. (valid until Jan 31, 2021)

[07:16.975]

I have to speak with someone within the next seven days and you're going to do what you need to do over the next period of time so that you can be a little bit more prepared and have the opportunity to practice speaking a little bit before the lesson, probably doing some speaking practice questions or some exercises where you're describing some different things just to start getting your brain thinking in English again and speaking at the same time. If you need to have some speaking practice activities, you guys can just go over to our website, register as a free member.

[07:53.155]

We've got tons of speaking practice in the sample lessons that are available to our free members. So if this example that I've described relates to what you want to do, you're welcome to follow that plan. Now, I know for a lot of our listeners, you guys have really been working at the English language for a long time, and you have some pretty powerful reasons for why you're learning. Some people are living in the United States or Canada. They've relocated there to have better opportunities.

[08:26.035]

And the language barrier, the difference that they have between their skill in English and the job that they should be able to get is not really achievable at this point. I also have immigrants that live abroad. They live in Canada, for example, and they're not feeling like they're able to connect with the community and they kind of feel like they're stuck in their native speaking community with their friends and they're not really able to get out and connect with the local people to have that authentic experience and really to be able to connect with everybody.

[09:03.145]

It doesn't matter which culture they're from. If they speak English and you're living abroad in an English speaking country, you want to be able to connect with anyone in any type of situation. But when language is the barrier there, that can be something that is really, really difficult. There are other people that live abroad, and English is becoming more and more important because we have so much globalization that's happening. And English is the language of business and it's the common language between a lot of different countries.

[09:38.545]

So the stronger that your English can be, the more opportunities you can have. Other people already know this very well and it's part of their career and they're having to face this English communication and they just don't feel happy with how they're expressing their ideas. It doesn't have enough detail. They don't feel comfortable volunteering to speak in the meetings, and they're struggling to understand what other people are saying. These are the students that we help. If you are one of these people that has these problems and you're.

[10:15.585]

Not really sure how to get to that next stage in a reasonable amount of time with strategies and techniques and ideas that are going to work, you really need to come and check out our New Year's offer that we have. We only have 20 spaces available for the unlimited language coaching sessions with me, but our programs in general have what you need. We even have monthly plans that include lesson credits where you can schedule language coaching if you want. So it doesn't have to be this unlimited package.

[10:56.415]

But like, honestly, guys like this unlimited language coaching with Amy for three months and all of the things that are included in our program, that's an amazing deal. And especially considering that I have not been able to accept new private lesson students for over a year because I have such a long wait list and my students stay with me for so long, I don't have a lot of space in my schedule to accept new people. So this is an awesome opportunity for you.

[11:27.555]

If you want to get in, you want to learn with me, you want me to give you that guidance and support and motivation and create that consistency and that habit of learning English and participate in practice with other people. You're not just learning on a computer. You're learning with other people. You're interacting with native speakers and you're in a community of amazing English learners just like you that are super motivated, super interesting from all over the world. We have students from Japan and Korea and India and Brazil everywhere across Europe and many people that are living abroad in Canada and the United States because they really realize the importance of speaking English really well for their life abroad.

[12:21.435]

So with that being said, I would love to start 2021 working with you. I want to be part of your success. I want to be part of you hitting new levels of your English in the shortest time possible and seeing better results than you've been able to see in the past period of time. And even if you decide that you don't want to join our program, it's all good we're here. We're going to continue sending out podcasts and lessons and things that you can use to learn.

[12:57.255]

But do make sure that you use those lessons. Remember, we don't just send you those lessons because we think it's fun. We're sending you those lessons because we're trying to help you. And if you don't use them, that's not going to help you. So you actually need to do the work. You need to use the materials that the teachers that you're following are sending you and really focus on just following a couple of people that you really feel are going to help you to get to your goals.

[13:29.385]

So that's it. That's a wrap. That's the last lesson of 2020. And I'd like to wish all of you a very happy New Year, and I wish for the most success for you and your family. And I hope that you have a good time probably celebrating at home, but that doesn't mean that you can't have some fun. So happy New Year from Curtis and I to all of our listeners. And I look forward to learning with you next year in 2021.

Important Links:

Pt. 3/4: Be More Consistent with this Powerful Trick

Pt. 3/4: Be More Consistent with this Powerful Trick

January 25, 2021

Being consistent is one of the easiest things you can do to see faster progress with your English. Unfortunately, this 'easy' idea, is pretty challenging to make into a strong habit. In this lesson, I'll talk about a powerful idea that will help you to be more consistent and reach your goals without feeling disappointed in yourself OR disappointing other people.

**Each of these podcasts will have the transcription available so that you can listen and read along.**

Listen to Part 1: Kickstarting Your English - Identify your reason to speak English well, the first steps to take, and setting a clear focus for the next 90 days.

Part 2: Navigating the Path to Fluency - From intermediate to advanced and beyond to fluency is a very complicated and confusing part of language learning. I'll explain how to handle this and keep you focused on the most important things.

Part 3: Getting in the Habit of Being Consistent - This episode you are listening to!

Part 4: Breaking out of Low-Motivation - The trick to quickly restoring your motivation and making quick progress that you can feel.

Important Links:

 

Transcription (Read and Listen to this Podcast)

This is the Real English Conversations podcast where you'll find the lessons and advice you need to be able to confidently use your English in the real world. Hi, everybody, this is Amy from realenglishconversations.com. And today I have another lesson for you. We're going to be talking about consistency and how we can use consistent learning to really help us to reach our goals sooner, but with consistency. This is one of the easiest ways to see faster progress in an easier way, honestly.

[00:42.495]

But it's also a very, very challenging habit to develop. So even though it's easy, it's kind of hard. And that's why we're going to be talking about this today. Just to remind you quickly, we are in the middle of a four part podcast series and this is lesson three. So if you have not listened to lesson one and lesson two, I strongly recommend going back and listening to those before starting this lesson. It's going to make a lot more sense what we're talking about today in lesson one, I was talking about restarting your English, learning whether you've been stuck or maybe you've lost some of your language level.

[01:24.045]

We'll be discussing that topic and how to get started again. And the lesson yesterday was about how to navigate this process, this path to fluency, we could say between intermediate to advanced and beyond to fluency. This is a really complicated part of learning a language. And the advice that we receive comes from everywhere. And it's easy to get lost and confused and stuck at a certain level with a certain problem for a long time. So I have some really valuable tips that can help to get you unstuck.

[02:02.565]

So make sure you listen to that one. So let's get started with today's lesson. One of the biggest problems that students face, especially when they're trying to learn a language on their own. And by that, I mean that you're not attending a school or a specific course with assignments that a teacher is giving you that you need to complete by a certain time when you're studying on your own. Let's face it, you're alone. No one else knows what you're doing or what your goals are.

[02:33.615]

They don't even know if you're studying. And that makes it extremely easy to skip a day or two or ten and tell yourself that it really doesn't matter if you miss a day because reaching fluency is going to take several months or even years. So missing a day or two doesn't really matter too much. And trust me when I say I know this way of thinking, because even though I teach people how to be consistent and work with them constantly to help find a plan that's going to work with them in their life, this is something that every student struggles with, including myself.

[03:12.195]

And I'm going to explain the consequence of that. When we look at what happened to me, specifically the language expert in this year in 2020. So there is one thing that I commit to, and it is taking lessons with a teacher twice per week. And I've been able to maintain this for most of the year. I've missed a few days every now and then, but I really try to show up, at least for my two lessons per week so that I can practice.

[03:43.185]

And what happened there was at least I practiced a little bit, but because I wasn't practicing more days than I was, it led to me losing my language level. I had went down an entire level over the past year, probably going from a C2 level, which is upper advanced down to a C1 level. And I'm of course disappointed about that. But I know exactly how it happened. I was so busy I wasn't able to do anything else between my lessons.

[04:18.375]

The only thing I could do to just try to maintain a little bit of my level was to show up to these two lessons per week. And the result of that was having a gradual movement backwards with my communication. And now I know that I'm going to have to be more committed and more consistent if I want to see that progress coming back again. So although it's easy to say, oh, it's just one day, it's just today, it's just one week, I'll just show up and do this one little thing here and this one little thing there.

[04:53.535]

If you do that too often, you can actually have a very, very big loss over a period of time. And I don't want that to happen to you. So let me give you my top tip. The thing that motivates me to be consistent and to study even when I don't feel like it. And this is something that you can definitely use to try to be more. Consistent with your own study, the solution is have another person involved in your learning, OK, as you noticed, I showed up every single week, two lessons a week, regardless of how busy I was.

[05:33.615]

The only thing that's different between me having a lesson with a teacher and me spending one hour to study something on my own is that one of them is done alone and the other one is done with another person. And if we look at that, it really shows the power of working with another person, because if we don't show up to that lesson, we are going to be letting that person down. They're going to be disappointed. And this is really what drives us to do things that we don't want to do, especially when another person is involved.

[06:11.535]

This is a classic example of people that want to start an exercise habit. It's good to have somebody that can be your gym buddy. You know, when you need to go to the gym, they give you a call. You're going to be at their house at six o'clock. And whether you want to go or not, you put on your shoes, you put on your exercise clothes and you grab your bottle of water and you go to the gym.

[06:35.655]

Why? Because your friend is showing up. And if you're not there and you're not ready, that's going to be really disappointing for your friend and a little bit annoying. So you don't want that person to feel that way. These emotions and the responsibility that we feel to make other people happy and to stick to our commitment is something that we can use to help us with our language learning as well. I have an exercise that's really going to help make this clear for you and to see how much of a difference it can make when you have somebody else involved in your learning.

[07:16.845]

Could you imagine if there was someone else that was part of your English fluency journey, somebody that cared about you and your goals as much as you do? And they notice when you aren't studying or practicing as much as you said that you wanted to, maybe you told them you wanted to study three or four hours a week, five days a week, something like that. And when they sent you a message saying, hey, how's it going? You have to say, I didn't get to it.

[07:50.655]

It was a busy week or yeah, I did it right. But you have to make that decision. And one of those answers feels really good. And one of those answers makes you feel a little bit bad and makes you think, oh, I really need to get serious here and to try to be more consistent with my studying. I know that I'm doing this for myself and I really appreciate the energy that this other person is putting into me because they care about me.

[08:16.995]

They're making sure that I'm staying on track. I don't want to let them down. That's going to give you that motivation to at least try to get back on track. Let me just tell you something. You know, that situation that I just described where somebody checks in on you, this is exactly what I do with my students that are in my fluency programs. Why? Because I care. I care about you. I care about your goals.

[08:49.005]

I care about the reason why you're learning English because this is important to you. And I know that when you sign up to learn with me, it's because you believe that I can help you to get to your goals. Let me give you an example of what happened this month. During December, we have a program called the Stay on track goal-setting program. And this is a form that you fill out at the beginning of the month and you say how many days and how many hours you want to study each week.

[09:22.725]

Two weeks later, I'm going to send out an email asking you how things are going and you're either going to respond with, yeah, everything is on track, all good or you're going to respond saying, no, not really. It's been busy at work or some other excuse or you're going to completely ignore the email from me. And to your surprise, you will find one week later when I get a reminder to check and see if you sent me a reply.

[09:53.295]

And I see that you have not responded yet. I am probably going to send you a voice message to ask you how things are going. And this isn't something like you're in trouble for not sticking to your goal. But the message that I'm going to send you is going to be something like this. Hey, I sent you an email last week. Asking if you needed to update your goals, I didn't receive a reply from you. Is everything going OK?

[10:22.185]

Have you been able to study the three or four hours a week that you wanted to? Because I know how important this is for you to continue to make progress with your English. If not, send me a message back. Let me know what you're stuck on and I'll try to help you to get back on track. I want you to think about that for a moment. How motivating would that be for you? Would that be enough to get you back into action?

[10:48.735]

Or if you really didn't know how to find more time, would you ask for help, especially if someone is there ready to give you the assistance that you need? Honestly, this is something that is huge. And every single one of the people that is in our fluency program that has received a message like this has been very, very grateful because they recognize that, yes, this is something that I want to do. Yes, I need to find time to do this.

[11:17.595]

Thank you so much for sending me the message. And it has given them that motivation and that focus to get back on track really, really quickly. This is something that is really unique. It's something that I really don't think any other websites are doing. Maybe they are, but it's very, very uncommon to have somebody who joins your program as a student that isn't forgotten about. You're not just a student to us. You're somebody who's learning with us.

[11:49.185]

And we're going to notice if you're a little bit off track, this doesn't mean that we're going to do the learning for you. You're still going to have to do your part. You're going to have to be committed. You're going to have to do the exercises. You're going to have to practice. If you want to see the progress, you're going to have to practice. But we're here to give you that support and consistency that you need in that moment where you need it the most.

[12:15.525]

On that note, I just wanted to mention one more time that we do have our New Year's offer running right now. If you missed the news yesterday, this is something that's going to give you unlimited access to language coaching from me, you and I. Together, we're going to work through every one of the major obstacles that you're facing right now to help you get to the next level. Whether you want to work on something, maybe with feeling shy when you speak or low confidence or you want to work on a specific skill, like being able to listen to movies and TV shows without needing to rely on the subtitles, whatever it is that you really want to see big progress with over the next three months, I'm going to work with you, give you activities that you need to complete and specific advice to keep you on track.

View the Special Offer for New Year's!

[13:12.795]

And you're going to be part of our premium fluency programs. And this means that we are also going to be helping you to set goals to be consistent and check in on you. Just like I talked about today, it's very important to know that we have very limited spaces available for this special offer. We only have 20 spaces available and once it's full, it's full. We can't continue to accept new students because really I only have a certain amount of time in my schedule for the students that are joining the program.

[13:50.835]

So if you want to get in on this, if it sounds like something that's perfect for you, you really want to break through some barriers and get to that next level within the next three months with your language learning, don't hesitate, sign up, get into this program while there are spaces available. If you have any questions about anything, just send me an email contact at realenglishconversations.com and I'll try to give you some extra information.

[14:18.615]

But we have all of the information, all of the questions you might have about the program there on the page. So if it sounds good to you, go ahead, sign up. And I'm really, really looking forward to working with you in the program. You'll be able to find the link to that special offer in the podcast notes or by coming directly to our website at realenglishconversations.com for tomorrow's lesson, we're going to be talking about low motivation and some specific strategies that you can follow to pull yourself out of these low motivation moments.

[14:55.545]

It's actually really easy and it works very well. So be sure to tune in tomorrow for the next lesson that we have. And I hope that you enjoy the rest of your day.

Important Links:

 

[Special Episodes] Pt. 2/4: Navigating the Difficult Path to Fluency

[Special Episodes] Pt. 2/4: Navigating the Difficult Path to Fluency

December 30, 2020

Today, I have another episode from our four part podcast series to help you get super motivated and focused in 2021 to reach new levels with your English. If you haven't listened to part 1, I recommend doing that BEFORE listening to this section because this episode will make a lot more sense!

As a language learner, trying to navigate from intermediate to advanced and beyond to fluency is a very complicated and confusing. In this episode, I'll give you a few tips and ideas to help you simplify the process and focus on the types of activities that will keep moving your forward in the right direction.

**Each of these podcasts will have the transcription available so that you can listen and read along.**

Listen to Part 1: Kickstarting Your English - Identify your reason to speak English well, the first steps to take, and setting a clear focus for the next 90 days.

Part 2: Navigating the Path to Fluency - This is the episode you are listening to!

Part 3: Getting in the Habit of Being Consistent - I'll talk about a powerful idea that will help you to be consistent to reach your goals without disappointing yourself or other people.

Part 4: Breaking out of Low-Motivation - The trick to quickly restoring your motivation and making quick progress that you can feel.

Important Links:

 

Transcription (Read and Listen to this Podcast)

Hey, everybody, this is Amy Whitney from realenglishconversations.com, and I've got a great lesson coming up for you today. We're going to be talking about this really complicated stage in your language, learning between intermediate going to advanced and continuing on to reaching fluency. Just to let you know, this lesson today is part of a four-lesson series that I'm doing.

[00:47.135]

So if you didn't hear yesterday's lesson, it's really, really important that you go back and listen to that right now. This audio is going to be here for you to listen after you've completed that previous lesson we were talking about this time where you're usually restarting your language, learning, or you're at a plateau where you feel like you're a little bit stuck or not making any progress, or maybe you've taken a long break. But honestly, even if you're somebody that has been just pushing forward and making great progress with your language learning, it's still a great lesson.

Listen to Part 1: Kickstarting Your English

[01:25.295]

And it's going to help you to get a nice, clear image of where you're going and what you want to achieve in the next three months, which is really, really important. You should be able to find the link to that episode in the notes for this podcast lesson. So let's dive into this lesson today where we're going to be talking about navigating this very complicated stage between intermediate continuing to advanced and going from there to reaching fluency. Regardless of where you are on this journey.

[02:01.685]

The advice in this podcast is going to save you a lot of time and to help you realize that you're not the first person to go through this and you don't really need to figure it out on your own. Before I explain how we're going to approach this problem, I just want to share something that you as a listener might not realize. A lot of the students that I teach in private lessons are actually people that live in either Canada or the United States, and they haven't just moved to that country.

[02:36.005]

They've actually been there for quite a while. And they've been going through this exact process trying to figure out how to learn and improve on their own. And they're putting in a lot of effort. They're spending a lot of time watching TV, listening to podcasts, maybe doing some exercises, and maybe even they've signed up for a course or two locally in their city. But it's not really working on the skills that they need to communicate and they're not really sure what to do to get to that next level.

[03:11.165]

So eventually they seek out professional help and they book a lesson with a teacher that actually knows how to help get them over these problems. Because honestly, the advice that is on the Internet is not all good advice. A lot of the advice is for beginner students, for example, or pre intermediate students or advice from English teachers that have never learned a  language themselves. So they're just kind of saying things that they think help, but they don't really understand if it does or not, because they've never been through the process.

[03:49.625]

Just to give you a really quick example, this is probably the most common piece of advice that is widely believed and widely given across the Internet to try to improve your listening skills. The advice that you're going to find is simply to listen to a lot of audio and eventually you'll be able to hear and understand everything perfectly. And that is awful advice. That is probably the slowest, most impractical way of approaching this problem with no strategy whatsoever. And you wouldn't know that as a language learner.

[04:31.595]

You're not going to know that. You're going to hear this advice being given by, I don't know, three different teachers and five blog posts because you're Googling how to improve listening skills because you're in the real world. You can't understand somebody when they're speaking to you, or maybe you're somebody that needs to have English for your job or for your business. And when a client is trying to explain something to you or one of your colleagues or you're in a group meeting on Zoom, and you can't understand the fine details of what's going on.

[05:07.745]

These are real world problems and you need to have a solution that is not going to waste your time because. OK, fine. If you have 10 hours a day to sit around and listen to music and watch videos and listen to podcasts and have massive amounts of English exposure, then yeah, maybe that strategy eventually will work for you. But most of you are, like me, very busy. I don't have 10 hours a week even to work on my language learning.

[05:39.525]

And I need to do things that actually work and are a good use of my time. And that's exactly what I try to do for my students, is to show you the way that you can do this a lot faster so that you're not getting lost for years and years and years trying to figure this out on your own. I mean, just think about all of the lost opportunities, whether those opportunities have already went by or opportunities that are just around the corner, that if your language level was at a different stage, you'd be able to make it happen, whether it's for a job or meeting somebody new, a good friend potentially in your area or whatever it is.

[06:26.145]

The thing is, with learning English in particular, it's a very difficult language and it takes a lot of practice and it's going to take a lot of time. So we don't really want to do inefficient things that can make the process any longer than it already has to be. So what is the solution here? Well, to be honest, it's getting the guidance from somebody that has done this before. They specialize in this area and they know exactly what to do.

[06:59.205]

And honestly, there are a couple of ways you can do this. The first one is really focusing on a few teachers that you feel are going to be the most helpful for you and really consuming the content that they're sending you, whether they're sending you lessons on their email list or videos on YouTube, whatever way you follow that teacher that you really love and you feel is helpful, make sure that you do the activities that they're recommending. And the second option is to actually learn with that teacher.

[07:33.825]

And I just want you to think about this for a moment. If you really start focusing on the skills that are your weakest skills and you're getting the advice from somebody who knows what they're doing has helped countless other students just like you that have faced the same problem and giving you very specific activities that are going to help you to quickly overcome that problem. What is your language level going to be like within the next three months? How many of those obstacles that have been holding you back that you don't know how to overcome?

[08:15.255]

It could be related to feeling shy when you speak, having low self-confidence or not really being sure how to practice your speaking fluency. Maybe you just listen to podcasts and you watch TV shows and that's good for listening, but you don't really understand how to practice your speaking in an effective way. That's actually going to lead to great results. And that's the difference between trying to figure it out on your own and actually learning with somebody who knows exactly what you need to do or give you suggestions about what to try so that you can see that rapid increase in those skills that you've been stuck trying to figure out and trying to improve for so long.

[09:02.115]

And this was a mistake that I made. Definitely, when I was a lower level student, I was trying to figure it out on my own. I was using the methods that I had been taught when I was in school with textbooks and memorizing vocabulary and doing exercises. But when it came time for me to jump into real-world communication, I realized I had absolutely nonexistent listening abilities. I couldn't understand anything hardly. And all of the words that I had worked so hard to memorize were not available at that moment where I needed to speak.

[09:39.645]

And if I could go back to that period of time when I had no idea what to do and have somebody say, Hey, Amy, you need to do this. For example, if you want to understand and be able to use the same words that native speakers are using, study the way that people speak. Go through a conversation if you find words and phrases and things that you don't understand, the likelihood of those words being very common words is very, very high.

[10:13.425]

And you're going to hear them and you're going to need those same words and phrases for your own speaking. That probably would have saved me. I don't know, like eight years of struggle. And I didn't know that I had to figure that out on my own, and fortunately, I'm a very creative and determined person, and as soon as I decided to start thinking out of the box, I tried different methods, I tried different techniques, and I found the things that worked best for me.

[10:43.625]

And I started teaching them to other people. And I've been working with my students one to one over. I don't know how many lessons, maybe 4000 lessons now working one to one with different students. And people are coming to me that have literally lived in the United States for 10 years, 15 years, and they're not happy with something related to their English. And within five or ten minutes, I know exactly what we're going to do, what they need to focus on, what type of activity they should try to overcome that problem or that feeling that they've been suffering with and struggling to try to figure out how to solve on their own where somebody like me was sitting there able to help them within five or ten minutes.

[11:29.795]

Just imagine if you had somebody like that available to you. The main point that I really want to focus on here is just the difference between trying to figure out things on your own versus following the advice from somebody that can really give you the steps that you need to overcome those problems. And I do that both in my online courses and the email lessons that we send to our students. But I also do this working one to one with students. And this is actually the point where I'm going to tell you about something really, really exciting that I am making available for our New Year's promotion.

[12:11.615]

First of all, before I tell you about this promotion, I just need to say that I have not been able to accept new private lesson students for over a year. The last time I was accepting new students was in December 2019. And that's why this offer that I have for you is so special. I'm going to be giving up to 20 students access to unlimited language coaching with me so that you can have access to this specific advice that you need to overcome your biggest problems.

[12:49.415]

And we're going to do this over a three month period. In addition to that, you'll have access to the online fluency courses. You'll have private lessons, access to our community events to practice speaking with the Real English Conversations teachers and other members of our community. This is something that is really going to be good for you. If you're somebody who feels like you're sort of stuck and you're not sure where to go to get to that next step, or you really need to make fast progress with your English learning, having the guidance of somebody that knows how to get you from where you are now to where you want to be in the shortest period of time is definitely going to be a huge help here.

Check out the New Year's Special Offer

[13:36.095]

Beyond that, I'm here to support you, to give you motivation and to encourage you along the way. So if you're interested in that, definitely check out the link that I have in the episode, notes down below. And I mean, it doesn't hurt to look, just click over, check out all of the details of this offer. And if it sounds like something that you want to do, don't wait. These twenty spaces are definitely going to be filled up.

[14:02.105]

This is a crazy offer and I've never done anything like this before. So get in there. If you want to be one of these lucky 20 that's going to be learning with me for tomorrow, I'm going to be talking about staying consistent. And this is probably one of the biggest challenges that people have learning on their own online. And I'm going to give you the specific advice that I give to myself and many of my students to really help them to be as consistent as possible, because consistency is probably the easiest thing you can do to make the most progress.

[14:40.685]

But it's also difficult to do because things come up in our day to day life that stop us from doing what we want to do. So I'll be talking about that tomorrow. I hope you guys have a great rest of the day. And I look forward to sharing some more tips with you very soon.

 

Important Links:

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App