What to do when you don’t understand someone in English

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What do you do when you don’t understand someone in English? Do you start to panic? Do you start putting yourself down for not understanding them?
 
Before you do that, remember that sometimes the reason you don’t understand someone may have nothing to do with your English!
 
There may be several reasons you don’t understand someone in English:
 
  1. The person speaks with a very thick accent that you’re not familiar with
  2. The person is from a different field or industry, so they use language or terms that you’re not familiar with
  3. The person is just not explaining something very well
  4. The person speaks too fast
  5. The line was breaking (if you’re on a call) so you didn’t hear them clearly
 
…and many more. 
 
So before you start judging your English listening skills, consider those possible reasons and do your best to handle the situation smoothly.
 
In this week’s video, I share six things you can do when you don’t understand someone in English. 
 
Watch the replay of the live session here.

You can also listen to this session on SpotifyApple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

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Hi there!

We’re Azimah, Amnah and Aisya from Malaysia. We created My English Matters as an online platform to help people improve their English.

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