Improve your Spoken English with Perfumes and Essential Oils

You’ve been working hard to improve your spoken English, but all the pronunciation patterns and words stress rules are beginning to feel a bit overwhelming. You’ve tried making lists and listening to recordings, but the hard part is just remembering to use what you know in everyday conversations. You’ve tried using reminder notes and alarms, and even carrying a smooth stone in your pocket to touch and remind you to use your new speech patterns.

But none of it is helping. You may be one of the people whose memory is triggered best by the sense of smell.

Have you ever walked into a room and smelled something cooking,and you immediately thought back to your mother fixing a favorite food when you were a child? Or perhaps you were walking through a store and caught a whiff of someone’s cologne – the same one your ex-boyfriend or girlfriend used to wear. That stirred up some memories, didn’t it?

Our sense of smell triggers our memory more powerfully than any of our other senses. So, we’re going to take this incredible capacity to remember and use it to help us master that tricky English pronunciation.

First, I want you to pick out a scent that you like, but that is unfamiliar to you. In other words, the fragrance that you wear every day won’t work, because your brain is accustomed to it and you already have memories associated with it.You can choose an essential oil, such as vanilla or peppermint, or a scented lotion that you like. Or, you can use this as a great excuse to purchase that designer fragrance you’ve really been wanting. The important thing is that you find the smell pleasing and that it is new to you so that it doesn’t evoke other memories.

Choose one sound that you want to remember to practice and use in your daily conversations. Make a list of 10-20 words that have that sound in them, and either memorize the words or keep the list near you.

Now, get out your wonderful new designer fragrance,essential oil, or other pleasing scent and apply a dab of it to your wrists. Do not put any of it on your face or neck. This is important because if you do that, you will smell it constantly, your brain will acclimate to it, and within a short while, you won’t notice it any longer. When that happens, the smell on your wrist won’t seem unusual and it won’t trigger your memory the way we want it to.

So, you have your list of words and your new fragrance on your wrists. As you go throughout your day, every time your hand moves near your face and you smell that wonderful aroma, recite a few of your practice words. If you are in the midst of a conversation, just use that reminder scent to encourage yourself to purposefully use one of your new words in the conversation and make a point of pronouncing it correctly.

Before long, smelling your fragrance will automatically trigger a response in your brain to pay attention to your English pronunciation. And soon, you will be getting compliments on both how you smell and how you speak as your new technique helps you improve your spoken English.

Not sure exactly which sounds you should be practicing? Why don’t you take my free online speech and accent screening at It only takes a few minutes, and you will get free tips on how to improve your pronunciation.

Yum! Improve Your Spoken English by Eating Candy!

You want to improve your spoken English and you are trying to remember everything you’ve learned about pronunciation and intonation,but it’s hard to break old habits. Even when you know the correct pronunciation of a sound, remembering to use it in conversation is another matter.

You’ve tried lots of different ways to remind yourself to use the correct speech, but they’re just not working. Before you give up and think you’ll just have to live with your accent the way it is, there is something else you can try.


Yes, I mean mints and lemon drops and sour candy. Not as a reward or incentive, but as a reminder. Let me explain what I mean.

We all use our senses every day to remind us to do different things. When we see a note, we’re reminded to complete a task. When we hear an alarm, we know it’s time to get out of bed or to be somewhere. Everyone has one sense that works better than others at cueing them to remember things.

One often overlooked sense is the sense of taste.

Now, of course, many of us greatly enjoy our sense of taste as we eat a delicious meal, but what I’m talking about here is using the sense of taste as a reminder.

How can you find out if your sense of taste will remind you to practice the skills you need to improve your spoken English? By conducting a simple experiment.

All you need is a list of 10-20 words that you are working on (all with the same sound in them) and some strongly flavored candy – mints or lemon or other sour candy. It is important that you choose a candy that you do not eat regularly, because we want it to”wake up” your mouth and brain when you eat it, signaling your brain to pay attention to what is going on.

Keep the candy in a bowl on your desk, in your pocket or purse, or somewhere easily accessible so you can suck on it throughout the day.

Each time you reach for a piece of candy, recite a few of your practice words, paying careful attention to pronounce them correctly. Over the course of the day, your brain will learn that when it senses that taste, it’s time to use your new English pronunciation.

If this seems to work well for you,experiment with several types of candy over a few days and see which one triggers the strongest memories. If the candy is too mild, you may just enjoy the taste too much and forget the practice, so be sure to use only strongly-flavored ones.

What a yummy way to improve your spoken English!

Not sure exactly which sounds you should be practicing? Why don’t you take my free online speech and accent screening at only takes a few minutes, and you will get free tips on how to improve your pronunciation.

English Pronunciation: The Secret to Learning 16 Sounds in Under 2 Minutes

Would you like to know a quick and easy way to master English pronunciation? What if you could learn 16 sounds in just under 2 minutes? Of course, you will still have to practice to master them, but I’m going to give you the secret of how it’s done.

The secret: it’s all in the voicing.

One of the most common challenges for second language learners trying to improve their spoken English is knowing the difference between voiced and unvoiced sounds. The beauty of this is that when you understand this concept, you have automatically figured out the differences in 8 pairs of sounds: s/z, p/b, t/d. f/v,k/g, sh/j, tch/dj, and voiced and voiceless th.

So, what exactly is the difference in these voiced and unvoiced sounds? Glad you asked!

Each pair of sounds has the exact same tongue, teeth, and mouth placement;the only difference is whether or not your voice is turned on.

To know if your voice is turned on, try this simple test. Put your hand gently over the front of your throat and breathe. Do you feel anything?No, you shouldn’t. Now, put your hand on your throat and say “ah”. Feel the vibration? That’s because your voice is turned on.

If you saw last week’s video, English Pronunciation of S and Z , then you’ve already learned the basics of voiced and unvoiced sounds. So, let’s just do a quick review.

We’ll try it with one pair of sounds: S and Z

Put your hand on your throat and say s-s-s-s-s. You shouldn’t feel anything.

Now, put your hand on your throat and say z-z-z-z-z. You should feel the vibration because your voice has to be turned on to make the Z sound.

Your mouth, teeth, and tongue should be in exactly the same position for saying S and Z; you just need to turn your voice off for the S and on for the Z. Does that make sense?

Now you can try it with the other pairs of sounds. I’ll list below which ones are voiced and which are unvoiced. And, there’s an audio download at the end for practice. Remember, for each pair, the mouth placement is the same; all that changes is the voicing.

Unvoiced Sounds and Voiced Sounds

  • s for sip and z for zip
  • bfor pat and b for bat
  • t for two and d for do
  • f for fine and v for vine
  • k for come and g for gum
  • sh for wishing and j for vision
  • tch for choose and dj for juice
  • th, as in thank and th, as in these

Practice sentences

  • Sip your drink before you zip up your coat.
  • Pat bought a new bat before the game.
  • I have two things on my list for you to do.
  • It is fine with me if you trim that vine.
  • Come here and I’ll give you some gum.
  • I’m wishing for a new vision for my future.
  • Did you choose the orange juice or milk?
  • Thank you for these tips!

The secret to these sounds is not such a secret any longer! Spend some time practicing these sound pairs, and you will be well on your way to mastering English pronunciation.

Not sure which sounds you should be practicing? Why don’t you take my free online speech and accent screening at It only takes a few minutes, and you will get free tips on how to improve your pronunciation.


Improve Spoken English With a Pebble and a Bracelet

When most people think of ways to improve spoken English, they think of listening to audio recordings, reciting practice words and sentences, and conversing with others. Rarely do they think of using their sense of touch as part of their practice routine. Rubbing smooth stones, twisting a bracelet, or moving a watch may not seem to have anything to do with improving your American accent, but for some people, those activities can provide just the incentive needed to make the necessary practice a natural part of their day.

Everyone needs reminders of some sort when learning a new habit, and each of our five senses can provide different ways of cueing, or reminding us, to do something new. We can see a note reminding us, or listen to a phone message, or perhaps touch something that triggers our brain to engage in the new behavior.

You may not think about using your sense of touch as a way to improve your spoken English, but I would suggest that you give the following activities a try. You may be surprised at what you learn about how your brain remembers best!

Choose a day that is an ordinary day, and choose just one sound to practice. Make a list of 10-20 words that have your target sound in them, and either memorize them or keep the list with you.

Find a small smooth stone that you like the feel of to keep in your pocket for the day. If you don’t have pockets, wear your watch on the opposite wrist or wear a stretchy bracelet that you’re not accustomed to. The idea is to have something unfamiliar touching you during the day so that you will notice its presence, but not be too uncomfortable. (This rules out wearing your belt too tight or wearing an itchy sweater, as those are too much of an irritation!)

Every time you feel the stone in your pocket, or stretch the bracelet, or think about moving your watch back to the other wrist, use that momentary interruption in your day to practice a few of your words out loud.

As you continue to practice throughout the day, you will find that almost without trying, you are thinking more about your target sound and using it correctly in more situations.

You may find that you like wearing your watch on the other hand or carrying that stone because those simple reminders begin to make a big difference in your pronunciation.

Experiment with different items in your pocket or jewelry on your wrist until you find the item that you feel works best at reminding you to practice and improve your spoken English.

Not sure which sounds you should be practicing? Why don’t you take my free online speech and accent screening at It only takes a few minutes, and you will get free personalized tips to improve your American accent.