Fear of Not Being Understood


Alright, the next fear we’ll discuss today is the fear of “not being understood.”

Ok, so, for example, if you say something and the listener gives you a strange look like, “Hmm?”, “What?” Or, perhaps they don’t make eye contact with you and they lose interest…

Ok, well, yeah that is a bit scary of a thought…if somebody doesn’t understand what we’re saying. Because that’ll cause us to feel, uh, you know…we’ll feel like our English is not good enough. Uh, you know, our-our skills are not good enough…our vocabulary is not enough to, uh, to communicate successfully. We’re going to be discouraged to, uh, communicate the next time. Or we’re going to lose confidence in trying to, uh, you know, speak English in the future.

Ok, so, how do we overcome this fear?

We have to understand…we have to trust that the listener is listening to try to communicate with us. They’re trying to understand us. They’re not listening to point out all your mistakes. They want to hear your message and they are interested in you. That’s why they’re talking to you.

Ok, so…and in many cases they’re going to give you another chance. They’re going to say like, “Oh, I’m sorry, could you say that again?” Or, “I’m sorry I didn’t understand that. Could you rephrase that?” Or something like that. They’re going to give you another chance to, uh, to let you explain what you mean.

Ok, so, instead of looking at this as failure, look at this a great opportunity! And this is an opportunity for you to try again. Ok, and when you try again this time the important thing to remember is use simpler language! Try with simpler words…easier words.

Ok, because the goal now is not to have perfect, beautiful English. The goal is to be understood. Ok, and when you are understood by the listener this time, it’s going to raise your confidence. They’re going to understand you and, uh, for next time you go home, then you study…you think about what happened and then you can make adjustments for next time. But it’s going to give you confidence to-to go, uh, and try the next time.

So, you know, give it a shot. And don’t be afraid to, uh, not be understood because you’re going to get another chance. If you, you know…I don’t like to use the word “failure” but if you do fail to be understood one time, think: you’re going to get another chance to correct yourself or make adjustments for next time.

And THAT, is the important thing!

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