If you want to speak English fluently and naturally like a native speaker, the secret is… think in English. It’s so simple, isn’t it?
However, it’s not that simple for many ESL learners; they will say “I don’t have enough vocabulary” or “I need to think in my native language, then translate it to English”. Thinking in your native language and translating result in sentences that don’t sound natural. In addition, it takes too much time to think and translate when you’re in a conversation, leading to pauses and hesitations.
So, how to learn to think in English? Here’s how…
1. Think of individual English words every day.
For example, when you wake up in the morning, see the things in your bedroom like bed, blanket, pillow, closet (wardrobe), etc. Or things in the classroom such as desk, teacher, classmates, whiteboard, etc.
2. Try to make a complete sentence from the individual English words you think.
• She is sleeping in her bedroom.
• She pulled up her blanket and went back to sleep.
• She teaches English.
• She sits at her desk.
It doesn’t matter if you can only make simple sentences. What matters is whenever you see something your brain will automatically recognize it in English word and will create a sentence out of it instantly. You will develop a habit of thinking in complete sentences.
3. Do the “mental practice” regularly.
For example, think in your language how to order a burger and then think how you would do it in English.
“I’ll have a burger with no mustard.”
“Could I have a burger and a large Coke?”
Remember you only do this practice in your head. Because you are only thinking, not speaking, you can relax from all the pressure of a real conversation. If you do this sort of “mental practice” regularly, you’ll be able to use English in any everyday situation.
Thinking in English is the best tip for increasing fluency. It will make you more confident and help you speak more easily and without hesitation. So, practice this strategy…
1. Think of individual English words.
2. Make a complete sentence.
3. Practice mentally.
today and see how your English fluency increases so fast. Best of luck! 🙂