Resources: Notes on Life and Language in the United States

Video Tip! Stop Translating from Your Native Language Into English

Posted by Lindsay McMahon on Sat, Dec 14, 2013 @ 09:47 AM

how to stop thinking in your native languageDo you find yourself translating from your native language into English in your head before you speak?

Does this slow down the flow of the conversation?

Does it make your sentences awkward?

Does it prevent you from building relationships with friends and colleagues in English?

If all of this is happening to you, then you have a problem!

Don't worry, I am here today to offer a solution!

Check out today's video tip and then leave a comment below to let me know if you have tried this tip yet!



How to stop translating from your native language


The key to solving this problem is creating an English environment around you. You need to make yourself at home with the language. You can do this if you are living in the US or even if you are living in your home country. Here are 3 ways to do it:


  • Turn on the TV in English: You don't need to sit down and watch it. Just turn it on so that you will hear the sounds of English in the background while you cook dinner or chat with your family. By listening to English this way, you will become more comfortable around it.


  • Read a short story in English before bed: I usually remember the things that I do just before bed. Make your last activity of the day an English activity! Choose a short story (it doesn't have to be a novel) in English to read just before you fall asleep.


  • Listen to a podcast on your way to work: Maximize your commute time by downloading a podcast like All Ears English to your smartphone. By listening to short episodes every day you will stay motivated, get comfortable with the natural sounds of English, and you will gradually start to think in English. Get more English podcasts here.



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