[Professional Enablement] Chapter 1 : How to Improve Your English Speaking Level

Rahmat Wibowo
3 min readAug 17, 2023

As someone who originated from non-English speaking countries like Indonesia. I always struggle with my English speaking levels. Like in Indonesia, you have been introduced to English since we are in the third grade of primary school. But why I’m unable to speak English fluently? I always thought dude I’m really dumb at this. How can I learn something for almost 12 years and can’t speak eagerly? Until I found out the WHY and the Solution.

Communication skills is what make you able to work on a team. It is like I know you have a lot of skillsets but if you can’t communicate because there’s a language barrier it will decrease your teamwork level. I struggle a lot during my last internship when this is my first time working in a multinational team. My manager came from Pakistan but becomes an expat in Bangkok and the team spreads across ASEAN. I always feel discomfort just to answer the question also this is the WHY I don’t want to study or work abroad because of this. But after I implement these tips I want to tell you. Language Barrier is no longer an issue.

  1. Stop thinking about Grammar

Have you ever thought that when we are talking in our mother tongue, like Bahasa Indonesia for my case, when we talk we only express what we want to talk not thinking about the grammar details.

The purpose of communication is to make the receiver understands you not to correct each other

2. Start thinking in English

One of the causes it takes us so much time just to talk in a different language is we think of something and translate what we think word by word. This causes a latency issue and panic attack if we don’t find the relevant word. Start thinking in English and your mind will think the words according to the list of words that you know.

3. Understand that everyone must have been struggling like you when learning a new language

I came from an educated background, all my friends can speak English. I’m the one who can’t. I’m feeling down, feeling low. But then, when I joined AWS Tech U. I met someone from Korea, China, Vietnam, and Thailand. They also struggle like me. I’m not alone, why all this time I positioned myself low only because of this. When I stop doubting myself and be more confident and more proactive to talk suddenly it blows my mind.

4. Practice it

I understand English but I can’t speak English. Because in Indonesia we only learn to do listening and understand the text. The exam is only multiple choice also fill in the blank for grammar. We need to practice speaking. If you don’t have a friend to talk. Just talk to yourself, talk to google assistant, or talk to Siri. You have to practice and practice otherwise your skill will be lost if you stop practicing it.

5. Learn to write

The key to increasing your skills in language is not just talking. But also writing. This is why I started to write to improve my knowledge and to improve the way I think. Writing is a really good habit with lots of benefits.

I think that’s all that I can share if you have some more tips, I’ll be very happy for you to comment and I include it in the next iteration of this blog.😁😁😁😁😁😁

Change Log:

15 Aug 2023 — Initial release

Author:

Rahmat Wibowo

Associate Solutions Architect @AWS
rahmat.wibowo21@gmail.com | linkedin.com/in/rahmatwi

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