#218: How to Improve your Listening Skills

In this podcast, Ethan and Andrea discuss how you can improve your listening comprehension. Did you know that 60% of our time spent communicating is by listening? And that we only retain 25% of that information? This could even be less when English isn’t your native language. Be all ears in this fantastic episode and find out how you can become a better listener and improve your comprehension.

Watch us on YouTube 

Words You’ll Learn:

  • Food vs meal
  • Knick-knacks
  • Dead perfect
  • Go off on a rant (go off on one)

Quick Definitions:

  • “Today we’ll touch upon that”: to mention a subject quickly when speaking or writing about another subject.
  • “Talking about whatever pops into your mind: the first thing that you think of or that crossed your mind.
  • The heart of the matter: the most important, basic, or fundamental essence or elements of an issue, problem, or matter at hand
  • “This question is very fitting for today”: appropriate or opportune.
  • “Listen to a podcast leisurely: leisure is the time when one is not working or occupied; free time. Leisurely is the adverb form.
  • Lie back: if you’re sitting down and you lie back, you lean with your back on a support. This is often said to mean you should relax.
  • “Active listening will give you a boost: to help you improve in something.
  • Pick up on something: to manage to understand something. When you’re listening to someone speaking in English, you might be able to pick on some parts of the message even if you’re can’t comprehend everything.
  • Mirror what they say”: repeat exactly.
  • Give your two cents: give your point of view or opinion on something.


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  • Fatemeh says:

    Hope you guys are doing well.
    First of all, I appreciate your attempts to help English learners.
    I just have a recommendation, I suppose it would be far better and more helpful if the podcasts contain a script as well.

    Thanks again

    • Justin says:

      We’re working on an app that will provide that. Stay tuned and we’ll share it soon!

  • Andrew says:

    Well, OK. Actually I have a one question for you guys. So, you have been doing for a while some explanations for the section “Words You’ll Learn”, but now you stopped doing that and I’m wondering why.
    On the one hand, these words you explain in the podcast (quite obvious, right?)) and maybe because of that you decided not to give an explanation, but on the other hand, you still give us explanations for another expressions, so I’m still curious)

  • Armando Padilla says:

    Amazing help mate…I’m an English teacher in Nicaragua, my mother tongue is Spanish, however, I’m making the most to improve my English every day

    • Agnieszka Tkacz says:

      You’re doing a great job! Keep it up and aww yeaah!

  • Sina says:

    Why is there a time difference between the YouTube clip and the audio file?

    • Agnieszka from RealLife English says:

      Thank you for asking, Sina!
      We recommend either listening to the audio or watching the YouTube lesson. The differences come from different formats of the media 🙂