Well, if you are in a conversation or some situation where you need to process information quickly and be able to respond quickly in a timely manner, you really won’t have time to translate. Even if you are super smart and very good at English, it still takes time to process all the information you receive in English in your native language, then think in your native language and translate it into English.
It does a lot of work for your brain and no matter how smart you are, it will take too long in any fast-paced conversation. So if you’re in a social situation, or a meeting at work, or at a presentation you want to ask a question. You really must know how to think in English!
Stop translating everything from English to your mother tongue in your head, in your brain, in your noggin and just start thinking in English, it’s entirely possible. Whatever your current level, you can still think in English!.
In this article, we will show you tips that will help you on your journey to thinking like a native English speaker. So if you’re interested, let’s get started!
- Let’s start small.
Understanding everything in English and being able to respond in English is normal. That’s a lot of vocabulary or a lot of food to digest properly. So; Let’s start by taking small bites and digesting well. This means that you should start practicing by doing small daily activities in English. For example, every day you walk the dog. This is the time for you to practice thinking in English by talking to that person in English. If you have a pet, you should. However, if you don’t have a pet, there are other ways.
You can set your smartphone to English so that every time you open your phone there is English vocabulary. This activity can take place several times a day. So every time you look at your phone, you practice thinking in English.
- Listen to English more
It won’t even take longer. You can treat yourself to an enriching English experience wherever you are. Open your laptop or smartphone and download the English podcast. Listen to Internet radio. Put a video on YouTube or Netflix in English and play it in the background while you do other non-focused work. Listen to popular songs in English.
You can do all of the above whenever you are free, even if you are just doing housework or organizing things in your bedroom or office. Gradually, your English listening comprehension and English thinking ability will gradually improve.
- Guess or plan what they will say.
Try to guess or plan what a native speaker will say in the next conversation or presentation or in any situation where you will speak in English. So when you predict based on your life experience what you think people will say, you will be better prepared and more confident. You’re preparing your brain to take in this information, and you might be surprised if eight out of ten times you’re right.
However, don’t get too attached to your prediction because other people don’t know the scenario going on in your head. Prepare for something different to come out of everyone’s mouth. However, just by exploring different options or your prediction or guessing what you think will happen, you will feel more confident and be able to process that information faster and think for yourself. in English because you’re already thinking when you’re predicting what’s going to happen in a conversation.
- Stop learning just by translating.
When you leave the English course for beginners, you need to learn by association, by your life experiences, by observing, watching and listening. Therefore, the key here is that you need to associate the word with its meaning, not the English word with your mother tongue word. The real meaning is really what you understand and then you can attach it to the word. So you have to stop learning through translation and deepen your English learning methods.
- Stop using bilingual dictionaries.
This method is very close to the tip mentioned above. We recommend that you stop using a bilingual dictionary because if you continue to use this type of dictionary to learn English vocabulary, you will always have to practice the translation. So just use this as a coaster that you put under the glass to protect the table top. Instead, use a monolingual dictionary. “Monolingual” means “one language”, so in English it’s an English-English dictionary. It not only helps you train your thinking in English, but also expands your English vocabulary exponentially.
- Label objects in your environment in English
You can just do it in your head or you can actually write the words on paper and put these labels directly on the object or use sticky notes or something. It’s super simple, super fast and easy for nothing. For example, if you see a book and you start learning English, you should write “Book” on your post and label it in the book.
Labeling everyday objects is really especially helpful for those just starting to learn English at an intermediate level, but it can be fun to do just to remind you to think in English at any level to what degree.
- Can you speak English?
When you say it out loud to yourself, it does a lot of good for you. You not only practice pronunciation, speaking, vocabulary, fluency, but also develop that English thinking skill. So what should you say when you say it out loud in English and when should you say it?
First, you should do this in the privacy of your own home. You probably shouldn’t try this trick with your coworkers or loved ones because they might think something is wrong with you. So what do you say to yourself? Well, you can ask yourself all sorts of questions. For example, right now you are thinking about your lunch today. So, if you are trying to improve your English, you can think to yourself and say out loud: “What am I going to eat for lunch today?”
It doesn’t matter if you make a mistake when speaking out loud alone, if your grammar is not perfect, if your pronunciation is not perfect. The goal of this method is not for you to become perfect at English, the goal is for you to develop the habit of thinking and speaking the language. Therefore, any errors are completely acceptable. Just write down what you are not sure about, then you can ask someone who is good at English, such as a native friend, your teacher, or you can do some research online.
- Start thinking in English with a mantra
Before learning and practicing English, you should talk to yourself about some phrases that can motivate you and get you started like on autopilot. My sentence could be “I am improving my English every day” and I would say it out loud in English or just think about it when there are many people around. Find yourself a mantra or motto that you love the most. It will lift your spirits and give you energy to improve your language skills.
- Take some time to reflect on English every day.
Our final tip to help you think in English is “Do a little bit every day.” Don’t force yourself to think in English all day, every day. Immediately start or immediately, it only takes 30 seconds. You can set an alarm for yourself to start your English thinking process.
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We hope you find this article really informative and helpful and also please do not hesitate to contact us for any doubts. You can also download our Entri App for free and start preparing for any competitive exams. This app provides a series of quizzes, Mock tests, PDFs, past question papers, and much more.