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Hi, this is AJ Hoge, Director of the Effortless English Club. Welcome to our new set of lessons, these are called the Power English Lessons. The reason they’re called Power English is because in these lessons we’re going to do two things. Number one, you’re going to learn English, of course. As always, we have the mini‑stories which are our favorite lessons for most of our members, but the content, the focus, the topics in these lessons are going to be focused on the psychology of learning and the psychology of success.
Now these ideas, they’re not just my ideas. In fact, they come from a lot of other people. They come from people like Tony Robbins, who is a famous success coach, Robert Anton Wilson, Joe Vitale, Robert Kiyosaki, Alan Watt, so I’ve taken a lot of ideas from a lot of different people about this topic of the psychology of success. And the reason that we’re going to talk about this in these lessons is that in my experience, most English students struggle and fail because of psychology, not because of methods, not because of teachers.
Those things are important, but Tony Robbins talks about the fact that psychology is 80% of success. And I think he’s right, based on my experience with many, many English students. Psychology is 80% of success, so 20% are the methods you use to study. 20% are the schools you go to, the teachers you have, the books you use. Those are important, we talk a lot about them. But the other 80% is psychology, your motivation, your emotions, how you manage your time. All of these things are in fact much, much more important.
What I saw in my classes were that the enthusiastic students, the energetic students, the optimistic students always learned much faster. They succeeded. The ones who failed, the ones who dropped out and quit, the ones who struggled had the opposite mentality. They had a very negative mentality. Their motivation was low. They tended to be pessimistic. They felt that they weren’t good at English. They had ideas that English was very tough, very difficult, they struggled. They didn’t have enthusiasm for English. They didn’t love English.
So in these lessons we’re going to talk about how can you manage your emotions. How can you develop that strong, powerful, enthusiastic attitude towards English, how can you maintain it so that you don’t get bored? So that in fact you get stronger and stronger with English and your psychology gets stronger and you succeed, you reach your goals. You speak fluently, effortlessly. So among teachers, English teachers, language teachers, this topic is called Non-Linguistic Factors. Non‑Linguistic Factors.
So what “Non‑Linguistic Factors” means is things that are not related to language learning directly. When we talk about language learning research, when we talk about the best methods to use when you learn English, those are linguistic factors, right? They are related to the language. Non‑linguistic factors means not related to the language. This has nothing to do with English, it’s more about psychology. Motivation, for example, is a non‑linguistic factor. So all it really means is just emotional factors.
And there are actually many research studies about this topic.
Dr. Stephen Krashen down in Los Angeles, probably again the expert in language acquisition and language learning, has done many studies and he has also looked at many studies and he’s found that non‑linguistic factors are equally or in fact more important than the linguistic factors to determine who is successful ultimately. What that means is that things like your emotions, things like your peer group, the community that you belong to, your feelings about English are as important or more important than the methods you’re using to learn English.
So how are we going to do this? How are we going to learn? Well, one of the things we have to do is create a daily English ritual. You need to engage your physiology. That means you need to engage and use your body. You need to engage and use your subconscious. That’s how you start to affect and strengthen your psychology. So we have to strengthen our psychology, what does that mean? Really it means affecting your body and your mind at the same time, so that you actually feel better. Your emotions are happier while you’re learning English. And I know this is the opposite of what you learned in school.
You probably didn’t feel very happy when you were sitting in your English classes. But when you’re learning with Effortless English, it’s very important for you to feel happy.
For your body to feel good, for your mind to feel good. For you to emotionally enjoy the process of learning English. Of course, it’s just more fun, you’re going to like it a lot better. But the other benefit is that you actually will learn faster. You’ll improve your grammar faster, you’ll improve your pronunciation faster. You’ll remember vocabulary words better, longer and faster when you feel good. So there’s a very practical reason for doing this, too.
So we’re going to talk a lot in detail in these lessons about how to do this. But just right now, during this introduction, let’s talk a little bit about a daily plan. Something you could do immediately, right now, today, to start improving your success with English by changing your psychology. So here’s a little ritual, a little plan you can follow every day to start improving, to start feeling better and therefore improve your motivation and to learn English faster and faster and faster, better and better and better. And it’s very simple.
So the first thing you’re going to do is when you get up in the morning, the first part of this plan, this daily plan. You want to get into a peak emotional state. Peak means top. For example, the top of a mountain, when we talk about a top of a mountain, the very top we call the peak. So we’re saying a peak emotional state means a top emotional state or top emotional feeling. It means you want to feel great. Not just good, you want to feel really great. That’s the first thing you need to do before you listen to any English lessons. Before you study you want to first be sure that you feel great.
How can you do it? Well, it’s really easy. I recommend, for example, using music. And I actually do this myself in the morning, most mornings. I will put on some great, exciting music that I love, jump around, act like a crazy person, and get myself feeling energetic and happy. Do that first before you listen. So move your body, smile. We’re going to talk about this more in detail in later lessons. But just for now, every morning when you get up first put on some music. Some energetic, happy music that you like, smile, move around. Do that for maybe 5 minutes, maybe 10 minutes. Then when you’re feeling really great, your body is moving, you feel like you have energy, you’re happy, then start your English lessons.
The first thing you want to listen to is the main article, the main audio. So the first thing is listen to the main talk. And you can read this as well the first time if you cannot understand easily, you can read the transcript and listen at the same time. Do this perhaps two times per day, starting with the main story and reading. Use a dictionary if you need to to look up new words.
Next, listen to the vocabulary. So in the vocabulary again I will discuss the meanings of some of the difficult words that I used. And again, you can read the transcript of that vocabulary lesson. There’s always a transcript you can read if you can’t understand my speaking, if I’m too fast, then read at the same time. It’s okay.
Next, you’ll listen to the mini‑story and the mini‑story is the most important lesson. The mini‑story is designed for deep learning. In the mini‑story I am going to ask a lot of very easy questions while I tell a story. In fact I really ask the story, I don’t tell the story. Why am I doing this? Students ask me “Why are the questions so easy?” Well, the questions are supposed to be easy because I want you to answer fast and automatically. I want you to train your brain, teach your brain to answer very quickly.
I don’t want you to translate from your language to English or from English to your language. It’s a bad habit, it will make you speak very slowly. I want you to just answer quickly, automatically, very fast. So that’s why I ask so many questions, like questions again, again, again, again, again…very easy. Your job…answer the questions quickly. You can answer with only one or two words, its okay. Short answers are fine. You don’t need to answer with a big, long sentence. In fact, short is better.
So that’s the order that you’re going to follow. You’re going to listen to the main article first, one or two times. You can read as well if you need to. Then you’re going to listen to the vocabulary one or two times, each day. And then finally you’re going to listen to the mini‑story, one or two times or more. You can also read the transcript for the mini‑story in the beginning.
Now another important point, when you’re listening to these lessons do not study them. Don’t struggle to memorize. Just relax and listen. If necessary, you can read as well, as I said if you need to. But relax, you’re not trying to memorize anything. Just let it come in. Let the English come into your ears and into your eyes. Don’t think about it. Don’t analyze it. Do not think about grammar. The mini‑stories will help you learn grammar subconsciously, so don’t interrupt that process by trying to analyze it. Don’t think about grammar rules.
You want to learn like a native speaker and that means you’re going to learn the patterns of English in these mini‑stories. You might not be able to explain them, just like native speakers cannot explain grammar rules. But that’s okay, you want to be able to use them correctly. That’s the important part. So again, you want to relax. Do not study. Do not think about grammar rules. Do not try to translate. Just relax and listen. That’s why we call it Effortless English. It should be effortless. You should be smiling, relaxed and just listening.
Now another important point. You want to move your body while you’re listening to the lessons. This will keep your energy high. So, what do I mean by that? Well, a really easy way to do this is just to walk. You’ve got an iPod, you’ve got your earphones in, listen to the lessons while you go for a walk. You can do two things at one time. You exercise, you improve your body and you listen to English lessons and improve your mind at the same time.
If you’re sitting in a train, then maybe you just stretch your body a little bit. If you’re in your car, you can move a little bit. You can move around in your seat. If you’re at your house you can go crazy, you can jump around. You can exercise very strongly. You can go to the gym. Do something with your body while you’re listening to the lessons.
It will keep your energy high. It will keep you feeling better. You will actually learn faster by doing that.
And finally, a very, very important point. You need to use our deep learning method. That means you listen to each lesson set for one week or more. So for example, this introduction has got three parts. There is a main lecture, a main talk. There is a vocabulary section. And there is a mini‑story. Well those three, you want to listen to those three every day for seven days. You want that repetition.
Repetition is very important. You want it to go deeply into your brain. Just one time is not enough. Even if it is very easy for you, if you listen you understand everything, it’s simple, still follow the deep learning method. Still listen to the whole set for one week or more. On the other hand, if it seems very difficult, listen longer. Two weeks is okay. Doesn’t matter, the point is you want it to go very deeply into your brain which means you want it to be almost effortless. It’s going to just go into your brain and eventually just come out without you thinking and that requires deep learning. It requires a lot of repetition.
So that’s kind of your basic plan for using these lessons. Again, first you’re going to get into a peak state. You’re going to get excited. You’re going to jump around. You’re going to listen to music. You’re going to feel great. Then you’re going to listen to the main lecture, the main audio, one or two times. Then you’re going to listen to the vocabulary, one or two times. Then you’re going to listen to the mini‑story, one, two, three, four, five times…every day. And remember, relax, feel good and enjoy the lessons while you listen.
Okay, that is it for our main section for this introduction. Next is the vocabulary.