How to Start Speaking a Foreign Language

by Lale Byquist

Knowing foreign languages gives many opportunities, including career development, establishing contacts with foreigners, helping during traveling abroad. No matter why do you want to study a foreign language, it's important to understand how to not only gain theoretical knowledge but start speaking it as well.

Although studying a foreign language has never been an easy task to do, honing speaking skills is even harder. And what is more, second language learners are not confident about their pronunciation, grammar knowledge, and active vocabulary.

As such learners don't often use a foreign language in their daily life, they are reluctant to speak due to anxiety, and there are some other reasons why they find it difficult to speak:

However, there are some ways to start speaking a foreign language with ease:

Expand Active Vocabulary

If you learn 20 new words a day, that's great. However, it doesn't guarantee that you will be able to use these words during the conversation. There is a difference between active and passive vocabulary, and if you want to speak a foreign language with confidence, you need to have a good active vocabulary. In fact, your vocabulary becomes active when you use words. Thus, you need to do your best to find synonyms and use them while speaking a foreign language.

Learn How to Express Your Thoughts

To start speaking a foreign language, you don't need to have perfect skills. The main idea is to be able to express your thoughts clearly. If you don't remember a word, try to make up a synonym or use gestures. However, don't be afraid of being misunderstood. While learning a foreign language, you will face different obstacles, and learning how to express your thoughts is important.

Win Foreign Friends Online

Communicating with people who speak another language is a key to learning a foreign language. There is no option to express your thoughts using your mother tongue as an interlocutor won't understand you. Although traveling abroad to find foreign friends is hard as it requires time and money, the digital era makes it easier to win friends online. For example, you can use Facebook search to get in touch with people who speak the same language you study. Practicing with native speakers is effective when it comes to speaking a foreign language.

Overcome a Fear of Speaking in Public

Learning a foreign language is hard, but it's getting harder when you need to express your thoughts orally. You don't have much time to think how to use grammar correctly and it makes you suffer from speech anxiety. To start speaking a foreign language, you need to overcome a fear of public speaking. Thus, you need to accept the idea that all people make mistakes and the more you practice, the better your speaking skills are getting. Thus, don't think about negative evaluation.

Get Motivated

Motivation is the greatest way to start speaking a foreign language. If you know the reason for learning a language, you will do your best to overcome different obstacles you face during the educational process. Once you face a fear of speaking a foreign language, think about the reasons for learning it, take a deep breath, and become a better learner.

If you have a good theoretical basis of learning a foreign language, that's great, but it means nothing if you don't speak this language. To start speaking a foreign language, try to boost confidence and understand what can it give you. The above-mentioned tips may help you start speaking a foreign language with ease.

A photo of Lale Byquist

About the writer

Lale Byquist studies media communications and she runs website to help people create outstanding presentations. If you want to understand how to overcome a fear of speaking in public, ask her at


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