English being a universal language with global recognition, has always been the dream of most people to be proficient in. Knowing English and being efficient in the language makes us feel recognized, connected, and confident.
While many of us are familiar with the language, we often see that our speaking skills lag behind our reading and writing skills. The most common reason is lack of practice and self-confidence. This issue often becomes a barrier while communicating with people but, it can be solved with a few methods and habits that will boost your confidence.
Building confidence is not an overnight process, and it takes time, but it can be acquired with a bit of hard work, strategy, and focus.
Steps to Boost Your Confidence Up While Speaking in English
Practice reading texts out loudly.
Reading more and more in English always helps you in one way or the other. Reading helps in knowing the language better, knowing correct grammar and spellings, and also enriches your vocabulary.
Other than the benefits mentioned earlier, when it comes to reading aloud, the brain gets accustomed to actually speaking English loudly. It improves your fluency, pronunciation, and your confidence to speak English in front of others gets boosted up.
If you are hesitant to read loudly in front of others, try reading out loud alone in your own space. Once you get comfortable with the process, bring a friend, mentor, or teacher, anyone you are comfortable with, to get feedback on your reading and correct your mistakes.
Learn English and improve your vocabulary.
Learning the language will automatically make you feel confident, and you will not hesitate or fumble while speaking English in public. If you have a good grip of the language, which you can get by exposing and surrounding yourself with more and more English content, you will indeed speak English with confidence and fluency.
Read books, newspapers, magazines, comics, or watch movies and TV shows, or listen to songs, audiobooks, podcasts, interviews – all of these practices will surely benefit you and help you learn English.
Try to have conversations with native speakers.
Have acquaintances or friends who are native speakers and try to converse with them in English only without taking help from your native language. With friends or people, you know well, you will be more comfortable and will not fear getting judged or people laughing at you.
You can talk to them freely with the knowledge you have, and they can always help you correct your mistakes, making you a better English speaker.
Talk to yourself in the mirror.
Most of us imagine having conversations in our heads, and this habit can be channelized in a good way where we have the conversations loudly in front of a mirror. While doing this, you get to hear yourself, and you realize your mistakes for further improvement.
Practice conversations in your head.
This step is similar yet a bit different from the previous step. In this step, you need to prepare few conversations or conversation starters. This practice helps talk to new people, especially in the professional world, to communicate more with people and don’t feel left out.
Have positive facial expressions, body language, and posture.
To feel confident, you must look confident, and having a smile on your face always does the job. Have eye contact, and maintain body language and posture where you stand or sit straight.
Avoid shaking your legs or excessive movements while sitting or standing. When you welcome people with a smile, you automatically seem to be more approachable, and people tend to have conversations without hesitating.
Try to imitate confident English speakers from the TV like news anchors, actors, sportspersons.
These are the people who speak English in front of a massive audience on a daily basis. They are even trained and groomed to make such public appearances and so, imitating their tones, and body language will surely make you feel confident.
The first step is to carefully observe the minute details of how they speak, maintain their posture, and modulate their voice and tone. Once you get accustomed to the behaviour, try doing it on your own, and you will surely improve your confidence with a little bit of practice. This practice will also help you enhance your vocabulary and pronunciation without a doubt.
Breathe and Do not rush.
If you feel nervous before an interview or a public speaking event, calm yourself down by deep breathing. Breathing is a wonderful way to calm down, and also, enough oxygen in your body will make you appear confident.
Slow down while speaking, and do not rush to finish your speech or a conversation. Take your time and talk so that the person in front of you remains interested in talking or listening to you. Another advantage of speaking with pauses and breaks is that you can get more time to think about what you can say next.
Have an aim and focus on it.
You first need to know yourself as to why you want to speak English fluently and why it is important to you. Once you get into the process, you are bound to make mistakes but what will keep you motivated is your aim and goals.
Another tip for being self-motivated is picturing yourself with your goals accomplished. Once you imagine yourself in such situations where you amaze people with your skills, you will surely feel motivated and confident.
Have faith in yourself and your mentor or guide.
You will make a lot of mistakes and even feel frustrated when you will see yourself failing. But, don’t lose heart as if you stick through the process and follow the techniques and tips, you will become a confident English speaker in no time.
Keep on practicing, and do not be afraid of making mistakes, as fear will only make situations worse for you. Believe in yourself and be open to corrections and constructive criticisms. As you start feeling confident, your skills will automatically get improved, and hence you will feel more confident, and this cycle will continue till the end.