3 Tips to Fake Confidence in Spanish

The author as a baby en el Parque de El Retiro, Madrid
  1. Practice — The tongue is nothing more than a weirdly shaped muscle, and it can therefore be programmed as one. With every bit of spoken Spanish, you’re working on building your muscle memory. That means that with enough practice, you’ll actually sing *on the beat* during the chorus of your favorite Spanish song. You’ll have phrases and prepositions down pat, with por la noche or de la noche, depending on what you listen to, pouring out before you’ve even realized it. Practice in front of your dog. Your plants. Your stuffed animals. Your gaming partner. Whoever and wherever, just practice Spanish out loud.
  2. Breathe and pause — the breath is a powerful engine that stalls out pretty quickly. Literally every sentence we speak comes from two sources — our pulmones, or lungs. No one’s timing you in a conversation. Pausing means power — and it’s worth the few seconds it takes to gather your thoughts. Whether it’s a penciled ¡respira! in your presentation notes or a BREATHE at the end of a sentence, it’s important to take the time to do literally the only thing that humans need to do to survive. Do it with me now… deep breath in… and deep breath out. Calm your lungs, and calm your mind.
  3. Queda curioso/a — Fun fact; I actually have this on a Post-It note on my desk. Staying curious to me means asking questions. Especially in a conversation, let’s say a new acquaintance pulls out a new word — ¡eh, no me digas un bolazo! You could go on smiling and nodding — or you can ask ¿qué es un bolazo? (In this case, un bolazo es un modismo argentino de mentira, or Argentinian slang for a lie). And in this case, it’s probably not the best that you go on smiling and nodding when someone’s telling you not to lie! A lot of misunderstandings can be resolved with just two words: ¿qué es?

YOUR TURN! DO YOU FIND YOURSELF FAKING CONFIDENCE IN SPANISH? HOW DO YOU HANDLE THE NERVES?

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Spanish nerd turned corporate IT nerd turned Spanish Coach, Megan loves everything to do with language, neuroscience, Spanish, and communication.

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Megan Miller

Megan Miller

Spanish nerd turned corporate IT nerd turned Spanish Coach, Megan loves everything to do with language, neuroscience, Spanish, and communication.

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