"If you've been at a loss for words in your own language, then you know it is just a part of the speech act."
“One of the biggest fears of my life is not living up to my potential,” MJ Bush. I read that quote recently in a newsletter I receive. I believe many of us live with this fear of not measuring up to our own expectations or the expectations of others. I’m going to say, “You have to let it go and be happy with doing your best.” None of us is perfect or we’d be finished, nothing new to do or learn. If we were perfect, we would be placed on a pedestal with other finished things like pieces of pottery and sculpture. We are alive and changing all the time, so some days we give what fills like 100 sq. percent and some days we are running on ‘0’ and just happy if we can keep our eyes open until quitting time. Don’t judge yourself too harshly, and I mean especially when you are speaking English. Don’t beat yourself up if you make a mistake, we all do. If you stumble over a word, or can’t make your point, or can’t seem to find the word you’re looking for relax, imagine you are falling backwards into a pool of water and take a deep breath and let go. We all sometimes have a misstep, and if you’ve been at a loss for words in your native language then you know it is simply a part of the speech act. The fact that we can think and speak in seconds of a thought without any further preparation is one of the miracles of being human. Even if what comes out of our mouth doesn’t always please us. So, you can stall, try to gain time to think about what the other person has said, and what you can say. Stalling is a tactic, it is defined as: to stop making progress. A car also can stall, which is usually when the engine has overheated.
Take the plunge and don't judge yourself or worry about anyone else judging you. You will always be learning. Even someone who says they are fluent in a second or third language had to work hard to get to where they are now, and are still on the journey. Remember: Have fun, and don’t judge the path you have chosen in your language learning journey, with anyone else’s.
ANNABELLE B-BAUMANN, Communication Coach
"Annabelle I've learned alot from you .....with your friendly art and your diversified lessons... it is never boring!!!" -Doris, BASF
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