This is a guest post by Michael from www.studyenglishanywhere.com
We have all been in that situation: we are at a work event or out with friends and the other foreign speaker in the group is using all sorts of fancy expressions and idioms in conversation. It seems to come so natural to them; you wish you could use these words yourself as they all sound so natural and typical of the kind of language native speakers use. This lesson will teach you a few phrases that are easy to understand and use, but will make you sound more like a native English speaker!
1. There’s no time like the present
Use this expression if you have a plan to do something, or there is an item on your ‘to do’ list, and you want to tell everyone that the best time to do it is NOW, not later. You would use this expression to recommend to other people that you would like to start now.
John: When shall we start this project?
Jane: No time like the present!
2. Give me a hand
A very popular expression that you can use in lots of different situations. It is simply used to ask someone for help. Maybe physical help (you are carrying something too heavy) or another kind ( You have an essay to write and you need some ideas). Either way, it sounds good and more importantly, it sounds native.
Brian: How is your revision going?
Joe: Not very well, I am struggling. Can you give me a hand?
3. To be worn out
This simply means you are tired and do not have any more energy, usually after spending all your energy on an activity. Again, the beauty of this is it is something we all say, all the time! In your books you may have learned the expression to use is very tired, or even exhausted – but many native English speakers use the expression “worn out” instead.
Chris: It was so busy at the shop today, I am absolutely worn out!
4. Not at all
This expression is extremely popular in the UK. We use it in response to someone thanking us. It is used in the same way as saying, ‘it is no problem’.
Jimmy: I’m sorry I’m late. Thanks for waiting.
Ankit: Not at all.
5. Never better
This is a response to people asking you how you are. Instead of saying the usual responses: ‘fine, thank you’, or ‘very well, thanks’, we can use this reply to say that we are feeling very good.
Anna: Good to see you Robbie, how are you?
Robbie: Never better, what about you?
So there you have it. These expressions, when used correctly, are guaranteed to make you sound more like a native speaker to your friends, colleagues and anyone you have a conversation with. My advice would be to choose one a day for your week and try to use it as many times as possible. Then, the next day you try another. By the end of the week, you will be speaking in a more native manner than just five days before.
My name is Michael. I am from London and have been teaching English for over 8 years. I love travelling and meeting new people from different countries. My life aim is to live in all the continents in the world for a short time and learn one language from each continent! I have managed two so far! I am happily married and enjoy my weekends sitting by the River Thames, enjoying the sights and sounds of London. You can find many more expressions, grammar help, vocabulary and pronunciation advice at our website: www.studyenglishanywhere.com