Learning a new language, especially the first one, almost always is followed by a speaking block. It is such a feeling when you can think, you can write, you can read, and even listen, but not speak. Something is blocking you from inside, even if you are not afraid, you cannot move your tongue correctly to pronounce words and construct sentences and form a consistent speech. If you understand what I’m talking about, then read further. If you don’t – anyway, read further, at least you will get it. This phenomenon is called either speaking block, brain block, or mind block,
What is a speaking block when learning a language?
Imagine that you’re starting to learn a new language, and gradually get fluent in your mind, but you never actually had a chance to talk for more than 5 minutes with a native speaker or a fellow learner. You may already think and write with confidence in your target language and talk to yourself by whispering, but there is a brain block that disturbs you to talk to another person, even if he is your best online friend with whom you previously talked only text.
Brain blocking is more familiar to self-learners instead to students of language schools. But don’t get me wrong, I am not against self-learning but instead – only for that. In fact, Fast Language Mastery is a project about self-learning. Back to the subject, language school students practice with each other in classes. Indeed, they do it only if it that is a good school, there are schools where everyone read and translates texts from a workbook for the whole class.
And I passed through this step too, and I want to share my experience on how to overcome brain blocking faster when learning a foreign language. This is not your fault, and this is not a fear, this is an area of development.
In fact, it happens when you don’t train your brain to speak. An infant cannot speak a language at once, and the same stuff with new languages. Again, think of it not as overcoming fear but as stuff to develop (and do it quickly!).
1. Start exchanging voice messages on any mobile messenger
You can always cancel the recording and record again. As far as I remember, I re-recorded some messages over 10 times, but every time it got better and better. You can do it with a fellow learner or a native speaker. There are a lot of Whatsapp groups and Telegram chats for any language, where you can also find good friends. I practiced my Spanish for a long time in one WhatsApp group, and now we talk without barriers.
2. Microphone and webcam
There are online Language Exchange services like hellolingo.com where you can chat and/or have a voice call. Once I was going to practice my Serbian and a Serbian girl with whom I was texting invited me to voice call. I had brain blocking but tried to speak as I can. Then we turned to Skype because the quality of the connection was bad, and in some next talks, I already could speak almost fluently as far as my vocabulary allowed me. Also, you can talk from a mobile phone using any messenger and voice call.
3. Speak out loud with yourself
You probably can whisper fluently, but when it comes to speaking out loud, the mess begins. Try to speak with yourself out loud, and pronounce words loudly. You will improve your pronunciation and will train your brain to speak. Again, as I said before, this is a brain training issue. It doesn’t matter whether you get this training with someone or with yourself. You will probably notice that you feel brain-blocking talking out loud to no one at the beginning. The key is to train your brain to use voice instead of whisper. You can read texts, speak about anything, and so on. Just use your voice, and you will gradually overcome the barrier.
4. Teach others (Sounds strange, isn’t it?)
Seeing this subtitle, I assume that your first thought was “How can I teach if I don’t know the language?!”. It is ok. But why not help other fellow learners? We’re looking for a possibility of a voice talk. If you have local friends who learn the same language, you can help them learn the language and explain how to pronounce words. Not only you will master pronunciation and overcome the block, but you will also memorize more words and will learn much faster in the moments of teaching. I don’t know why it is so, but it is so. I confirm it. When you teach something – you learn much faster. And what I wonder is – you learn faster not only the language you teach, but also another language, and moreover – another thing.
5. Mix your native language with your target one
Spanglish, Runglish, Frenglish, and other mixtures of Engish, for example. I played a game with my brother, and just for fun, I mixed English with Russian. And then it became a habit when I talked to him. And it improved his English. And now I recommend this method to my friends, and to you. It is funny and it helps not only to overcome the speaking block but also improve language skills in total.
Overcome brain blocking fast and easy!
Using these 5 tips you will do it very fast. 1-3 days is enough. And your language mastery will be at a new level.
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