Talk to Yourself, You are your best friend, communicate with yourself!
I know it may sound strange, but it’s true. I’ve improved and progressed in all of my language studies by talking to myself. You too can talk to yourself.
Word of Caution: Talking to yourself may bring about unwanted stares from strangers 🙂
No, but seriously, let me explain what I mean.
Have a Conversation with Yourself in a Foreign Language
I am often preaching that you should be speaking to a native speaker, preferably with a tutor on iTalki, but talking to yourself can have profound benefits.
- Conversation Sentence Building
- Finding Areas in Need of Improvement
So you’ve been doing your due diligence. You’ve been learning vocabulary by using tools like Memrise and Anki. But now you need to start making sentences. But wait, your internet is down or you just don’t have the time to talk to that iTalki tutor. What can you do?
Talk to yourself!
Here’s a sample Spanish conversation I often have with myself:
¡Hola! ¿Como estás? Muy bien y tú?
Estoy muy bien gracias. ¿De dónde eres?
Yo soy de los Estados Unidos. ¿Y tú? Yo también soy del los Estados Unidos.
Okay, as silly as it may seem this a truly great practice! You’re having fun by having a fake conversation with another Spanish speaker. What could go wrong?
Don’t we already speak to ourselves in our native language? Why not do it in our target language too.
Let’s say you’re going along just fine in your self-contained conversation. When all of a sudden you ask yourself a question you can’t answer! What!? Is this even possible?
Trust me, I’ve done it. So I know others have as well.
Or a more likely scenario is when you’re talking to yourself and then you want to make a bigger sentence but find out you can’t do it. For example…
¿Come te llamas? Yo me llamo Felipe.
¿Te gustan los gatos? Sí me gustan los gatos, pero… I only like kittens, not adult cats
(Dun! Dun! Dun! I had to revert to English!)
This is where the magic comes it.
Grab your notebook and take notes of what shortcomings you may have.
- Maybe you find out that you’re missing a few vocabulary words.
- Perhaps you find out that you’re not quite sure if you formed this sentence correctly.
- Coincidentally you know 2 words that have the same meaning but you don’t know which one is more correct?
- Suppose you do have a “successful conversation” but you want to check with a native speaker whether your flow and exchange of dialogue is typical for a native
Let’s face it.
Sometimes we’re alone.
That doesn’t mean we can’t have fun!
Embrace your inner child with me and let’s see how imaginative you can really be.
- Want to practice picking up someone at the bar? Pick up yourself!
- Imagining how to talk about the Zombie Apocalypse in your target language?
Try planning the scenario out by yourself.
- Need to practice calling the police and telling them your car was just stolen? That’s right, practice with yourself and enjoy your role as a dispatch agent
- How about imagining yourself in bed with someone who speaks your target language? Practice your sexy pillow talk with yourself 🙂
In all honesty, all of these are real-life possible conversations that we already are having in our native tongue. So why not expound your target language to be able to do the same?
Talk to yourself in these sometimes silly and maybe embarrassing scenarios to help you build the confidence, vocabulary, and experience to eventually to have these conversations with a native speaker.
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