Think In English

What Does It Mean To Think In English?

In a nutshell, “Thinking In English” means having the ability to override the urge to process your thoughts in your native language first, before speaking, when in an English-language conversation.

“Thinking in English” means being able to speak your thoughts spontaneously, without second-guessing yourself.

It means feeling grounded enough in the knowledge and skills that you already possess as an English-speaker to confidently make that the foundation on which your next level achievements can be built.

You Have Been Taking English Lessons For Years

Based on my work with non-native English speakers over the years, I have gathered that the average adult learner has spent between 7 and 10 years formally studying the English language – either through courses or through private lessons.

Technically speaking, if a person were to study any other subject for this same amount of time, they would be qualified to teach it to others at the university level.

The reason that so many adult, non-native speakers of English continue to struggle to advance in the language is because the courses and lessons that they continue to take have never taught the learners how to think for themselves in English.

The materials, exercises and conversations in the lessons are the same as they are for school children – who only need to know enough to pass a test when the time comes.

Adults engaged in international business transactions need to be able to activate their dormant capacities for communicating in English with nearly the same speed at which they are able to activate their communications skills in their native language.

Exercise The Motor Skills

Those seeking to advance their English-language skills, whether for business or casual use, will very often say, “I need to live in a country where only English is spoken. That’s how I will advance my English.”

To that I have responded, “Living in an English-speaking country won’t help you to advance your English. Working in an English-speaking country will.”

The fact of the matter is, typically, when a person moves to another country in which their native language is not spoken, they will default to their mother tongue the moment that they become separated from the larger population. In most cases, the person will even actively seek out their fellow countrymen and women whenever possible – to meet for leisure time activities such as meals, drinks and outings.

For families, this will take place in the home – where the mother tongue will be primarily spoken.

Entertainment choices also tend to not favor the target language when we consider the consumption of media over the span of hours per day. This is especially true for print media/reading material.

The best full immersion exercise for advancing a person’s target-language skills is in the workplace.

At work, there is a demand on the person’s focus, ability to communicate and soft skills in the target-language culture that is inescapable.

Reading, writing, listening, speaking and understanding/comprehension are the default in such environments. Not so with just “living”.

Unknowingly, the person who must work in these target-language environments develops a set of motor skills for the language over time.

These motor skills are what contribute to the ability to “think” without “thinking” – like when you drive a car or ride a bicycle or play an instrument.

At first, the motions are awkward, but as time goes on – with no alternatives for production available, the skill becomes second-nature.

My Website

I have created a space, here, on my website, where such motor skills can be developed.

Through the employment of games, puzzles and downloads – together with blog articles, you can advance your level of English and the speed at which you can access your knowledge.

You can learn to “Think In English”.

The activities are based on my blog articles (which are also available as audio recordings). This means that the new knowledge that you acquire will be:

  • written at a level suitable for adult learners in business,
  • grounded in practical, relevant, useful information,
  • repeated at different touch points throughout the website.

All this acts as a simulation of the work environment in which you could, hypothetically, be immersed every day.

Reading, listening, writing, comprehending would all take place on demand, at your convenience.

When would you be able to speak?

I offer 1-to-1 training sessions in which speaking, with corrections and explanations, could take place. Just visit my Lessons menu tab for more information on how to book a session with me.

In the meantime, why not start with these crossword puzzles and see how you do?

I would love to hear about it!

– Michelle

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