Best ways to improve your speaking skills: Useful Advice

How can I improve my speaking skills? Ever wondered that? Well, you probably wouldn’t be here reading this post if you hadn’t of wondered that. There are many different types of speaking styles. There’s public, casual, business, etc… However, for non-native English speakers, all of the above can prove to be extremely challenging. Not only are you worried about effectively getting your point across, you’re worried if your speaking skills are even up to par to accomplish such a task. So, I’m here to help you out with that. I’m here to give you some useful advice that can help improve your speaking skills.

Be sure you possess a strong foundation

In order to excel in speaking English, you need to have the basics down-pat. No matter what your end goal may be, whether it be improving your public speaking skills, speaking for casual conversation, business speaking, or if you’re just wondering how to improve your speaking skills in general, you need to have a strong foundation. Having a good understanding of English vocabulary, and putting effort into always using the correct pronunciation of words, will take you a long way when it comes to developing your speaking skills.
How To Make Long Sentences In English

Vocabulary boot camp

If you want to expand your vocabulary, you must learn new words every day. Put yourself into your own, self-disciplined, vocabulary bootcamp! Strive to learn new words every day. Set a target or goal, and make sure you don’t fall short.

For example, you can set a goal to learn three new words a day, five, or even ten, but once you set that goal, make sure you own up to it. So, if you set a goal to learn three new vocabulary words a day, you need to make sure you learn three vocabulary words a day, which makes twenty-one words a week, and eighty-four new words a month, and over one thousand words a year!

You can easily find vocabulary worksheets online, or maybe you already have some vocabulary words you need to learn for a class. It’s simple finding words to learn each day. However, if you are still wondering where to find new words, I would highly recommend watching tv shows in English and writing down the words you don’t understand. Then, after the show, go look them up and learn! Or, if you have a smartphone, the Dictionary.com app is perfect for vocabulary learning! So, if you’re still wondering a good way on how to improve your English speaking skills, I highly, highly, recommend downloading this app. There is even an option to sign up for daily English vocabulary notifications! Of course, you could always go old-school and open up the dictionary every day to find your vocabulary words as well, that’s fun and exciting too! You will never know what the dictionary may have in store for you! However, I will say that learning words that are related has its benefits. So, it may be more efficient to choose one word, then search related words and learn via that way.

EXAMPLE- restaurant, tip, waitress, receipt. These words are all related in some way, so it may be easier to learn these in a group, rather than one by one.

Pronunciation is key

You can learn vocabulary words all you want, all day every day, but if you don’t know how to pronounce them properly, then what’s the use? No one will be able to understand, and then all that studying was for nothing. A complete waste of time. We don’t want to waste time, now, do we?
How To Make Long Sentences In English
Another benefit from using apps or online dictionaries is that most of the time, there is a button you can click to hear the pronunciation. Please, take advantage of that little button! You will need to not only know the word and definition but how to pronounce it as well. Now, there’s also plenty of tutorials for this on YouTube too. Furthermore, those tutorials can even teach you regional pronunciation as well. So, although American English is the global standard, if you’re interested in learning the British way to pronounce a word, you can always rely on YouTube for that for improving your speaking skills.

After learning the tips and tricks of English pronunciation, if you feel like you really got it it, I encourage you to go on to practicing pronunciation with tongue twisters. Not only will this help you with your articulation, but it is just plain fun too!

Remember, learning how to pronounce English properly will improve your speaking skills. There are no ifs, ands, or butts about it. You will improve, you just need to put in the effort to do so.

Confidence is key

One of the biggest things that may be holding you back from achieving your goals with your English speaking skills, may very well be your lack of confidence. Now, I’m not talking about your overall confidence, so please, do not take offense. What I am talking about is the confidence you have when speaking English. Do you feel comfortable and confident speaking English? Or do you still tremble at the thought? Believe it or not, this heavily impacts your speech.

If this sounds like it may be you, and you are not that confident in your speaking, I’m going to let you in on a little secret: practice makes perfect. Okay, so maybe that’s not much of a secret, but it’s true! Overcome your fears, go out there, and just practice speaking English!

Tips to improve your speaking skills

So, do you remember when I said that this is just my advice on how to improve your English speaking skills? Yeah, it’s just that. Advice. It may work for some, and it may not work for some. Ultimately, you will need to try a few different things until you discover what works best for you!

Now, with that being said, I’m going to go ahead and give you five tips on how to improve your speaking!

Learn physical cues

  • Most of the time, communicating effectively doesn’t even involve any verbal communication. Make sure you have proper posture and remain in eye contact with your audience. No slouching or folding of the arms.

Don’t rely on visual aids

  • Now, this is more for the public speaking/ business side of speech, but it can still be helpful to anyone. When speaking, don’t rely on your PowerPoint, slide, or brochure to do the talking for you. In other words, don’t just get up there and read what is written on your aid. Use your words, tell a story, and become acquainted with your audience. In fact, I would encourage you to steer away from using visual aids unless absolutely necessary.

Get feedback

  • How will you know you’re improving if you don’t track your improvement? Yeah, you can always record yourself and play it back to track your progress, but getting true, honest, raw feedback is the best way for you to discover your weaknesses and areas in which you need to improve.

Keep the conversation going both ways

  • No matter if you’re speaking with a friend, or to a group of a thousand people. It’s no secret that people can get bored during one-sided conversations. That being said, be sure to make your speech interactive. There’s nothing worse than a bored audience. After all, most people have limited attention spans when listening to a speech anyway.

Be a good listener

  • I know, it’s weird, isn’t it? You’re here to improve your speech, what does that have to do with listening? Well, listening to what other people have to say, and I mean really listening, can help provoke your brain to produce thoughtful and meaningful answers.

Finally, now that you know how to improve your English speaking skills, go out, and actually do so. Don’t make the decision today and forget about it tomorrow. Hold yourself accountable, start your own vocabulary bootcamp, practice pronunciation, have some fun with tongue twisters, and remember practice really does make perfect. I have simply just given advice for you here. Now, the ball is in your court. It is up to you to take this advice and apply it. Best of luck to you in achieving your English goals!
How To Make Long Sentences In English

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