Part 3: Improvisation

3A First Efficacy, then Speed, then Quality

One way of describing spoken "fluency" is the ability to quickly and effectively convey meaning in an eloquent way. Put that way, there are three areas of improvement for spoken fluency - efficacy, speed and quality. As a learner, you have limited energy to invest, so you can't improve all three at once. You have to choose what to focus on. In the conventional approach, you are trained to focus first and foremost on quality, even at the cost of efficacy and speed. So instead of just getting your point out as fast as you can, you take your time to ensure proper grammar and word choice. The natural way is to FIRST master efficacy, then master speed, THEN master quality. If you try the reverse order, you'll get stuck and progress nowhere. Watch the video below where I discuss this concept in more detail. Then in the #learn channel, share your reactions to these ideas.

3B Increase Word Recall Speed with Metronome

The basic element of speed is how quickly you can conjure a word for something to mind. In this exercise, you will maximize that speed for your personal story stax words, so that you can use these words more easily in the later exercises. Set a metronome to 60 to starts, then cycle through your words, saying each one to the beat. Keep cycling until you can get every word consistently in time, with minimal effort. Then increase the speed to bring the challenge back to the edge of your Flow channel. Repeat this until you get to a speed you feel satisfied with, then record yourself performing it, and send the recording to the #meaning channel along with a reflection on the experience.

3C Increase Phrase Construction Speed with Metronome

Now you will practice putting words together to form basic sentences. Start with simple character-action combos, then once you're comfortable, try adding objects, settings and descriptors. Again, increase the speed once you feel you can do the task easily. When you're satisfied with the speed and complexity of your phrases, record yourself practicing for 60 seconds, then send the recording to the #meaning channel, along with a reflection on the experience.

3D Improvise Phrase Construction

Up until now, you've been moving through words and phrases in a predictable way (from top to bottom). In other words, you didn't have to make a choice for what word to select, the choice was already made ahead of time for you. But in conversation, you will continually have to make choices of what to say, and you won't have more than a few fractions of a second to make and act on the choice, if you want to keep the natural speed of conversation flowing. So to practice your general ability to choose and act without thinking about it, you will now practice generating random (but still coherent) sentences using your story stax. This experience of spontaneous composition is very effective at grounding these meanings into your mind and muscle memory. Start with simple character-action combos, then move on to more complex combos. When you're satisfied with your improvement in complexity and speed, record yourself performing this drill for 60seconds, and share recording and reflection to the #meaning channel.