Difficulties With the Present Continuous Tense

People who learn English as a second language have problems mastering the tenses. While the Present Perfect tense poses challenge at a cognitive level, the Present Continuous poses challenge in restraining them from over use.

Asian learners, especially, Indian, use this tense left, right and center.

I am coming out from the shopping mall, sir, I am meeting this man who is asking for money yesterday.

It is not difficult and it does not take much time either to understand the tense, but it does take some practice, a guided practice, to master it.

The primary usage of this tense is to speak about what is happening at the time of speaking-that is the ‘now’ of the speaker.

I am reading this article.

Are you listening to me?

It is not moving, is it?

The Present Continuous is also used for speaking about an action happening these days or nowadays.

What is he doing?

He is writing a new novel.

Where is papa? What is he doing?

He is in Canberra, attending a conference.

The examples above show that the tense is used for an action that you consider temporary. It is not an action that happens every day, every time, for which we use the Simple Present.

I read books. It is my hobby and it happens every time when I have time

I am reading books. Now.

I am reading a new book by Archer. Nowadays.

Unlike native speakers, speakers of English as a second language find it difficult to understand verbs that are seldom used in the Present Continuous even for actions happening now.

Are you seeing the bus there?

Speak, I am hearing you.

I am wanting money.

Are you understanding me?

He is not having any problems.

Verbs such as see and hear are involuntary actions. You cannot stop seeing if you keep your eyes open nor can you stop sounds entering your ears that are always open. They are always open and not under your control.

The Present Continuous is used only with actions that come under your control. Similar is the case with verbs that denote a state and not action. Have denotes possession or relationship. It speaks about no action. Therefore the sentence He is not having any problems is considered non-standard.

So next time when you use the Present Continuous, pause for a while and find out if you have got that sentence correct. This advice is for learners of English as second language.

Basic Presentation Skills: How to Craft Effective Speech Openings

The opening of your speech or presentation needs to hook your audience. If you can’t capture their attention straightaway, then there is a good chance that your entire presentation is doomed from the beginning. One crucial basic presentation skill you need to know is how to craft an effective opening that hooks your audience and draws them in. Here are four tips to help you accomplish that.

1. Be prepared. We cannot stress this enough. Even if you normally just create a basic speech outline and fill in the details as you speak, you should always learn your opening word-for-word. Practice it relentlessly until you can say it backwards in your sleep! Not only will this improve the quality of your crucial opening, but it will lessen the chance that you make a mistake or accidentally leave something out.

2. Grab your audience’s attention. Your opening is the first impression your audience forms of you. Make sure it’s a good one! Tell your audience exactly what you’re going to talk about and-perhaps even more importantly – why they need this information. Also, skip preliminaries like “ladies and gentlemen;” you can always weave them into the opening lines of your speech.

3. Tell the audience why they should listen to you. This is related to step number two, but it’s worth covering in greater detail. Why does your audience need this information? What will they take away from your presentation? Be sure to tell them this as early as possible in your speech. Your audience will want to hear why they should take time out of their busy schedules to sit down and listen to you, and will appreciate it if you give them that information outright.

4. Set the mood. This is a more abstract tip than the previous three, but it’s still just as important. What is the tone of your presentation? Serious and somber? Light-hearted and funny? Technical and laden with information? Be sure you get that across here. For example, if you have a funny opening but the rest of your speech deals with heavy subject material, then you may want to re-evaluate it. This entails getting a firm grasp on the tone of your piece and the tone the subject matter deserves.

Remember, your opening can determine the success of your entire presentation. So be creative with it, and use it to make a splash! Follow all four of these tips and you’re sure to boost your basic presentation skills by crafting effective openings.

Negotiation Skill Training In Hypnosis

Imagine you are sitting across the table from someone you are negotiating with. This could be a negotiation for the purchase of a business, the sale of a car, or just trying to get your kids to do their chores.

In any negotiation, you want the other party to do what you want and by the same token, they want you to do what they want. So how do you tilt the scales in your favor?

Well quite simply, you have to become a better negotiator. Contrary to what people may think, this is a skill that can be taught. You just have to be willing to learn.

If you are ready to learn and want to invest the time, effort and money necessary to become a better negotiator, then keep reading. Otherwise, stop reading right now! Negotiation skill training is not for you.

I don’t mean to be harsh, but that is the reality of it. If you want to continue losing negotiations in your everyday life, then don’t work on it.

But if you are still reading, then this information is for you.

Just like master mechanics have an arsenal of tools in their toolboxes, master negotiators must also have different weapons that they call on to win negotiations.

One weapon that you can have at your disposal is the power of hypnosis. Say what?

That’s right, I said hypnosis. Now I know what you are thinking.

You will have to waive a gold watch in front of the car salesman and count to ten, at which point he will get very sleepy. Then he will lose all ability to think for himself and you can get your new car for half off.

No, that’s great for the movies, but that’s not how it works. Let me explain it this way…put yourself in the other person’s shoes for a minute.

In order for that person to give you what you want, what is the first thing that will have to happen? They have to like you.

Think about it.

From the other person’s perspective, if they look at you and see a mean, grouchy person, will that give them any reason to give you what you want? Of course not.

However, if you form a good rapport with them and they see you as a friend, wouldn’t they be more flexible in a negotiation? Usually yes and at the very least, it can’t hurt.

As you probably know, this is the Rapport Step in sales and negotiation. This is where you get to know the other person as a person and not just someone you are about to negotiate with.

If you already know this person well, like a family member, then the rapport step is necessary to dig deeper and get more information about the topic you are negotiating about. This is so that you can understand where that person is coming from and use that to your advantage.

What does this have to do with hypnosis?

My point is that what the marketers are calling hypnosis is not hypnosis in the way that we traditionally think of it. It is just a series of steps (like the rapport step) and mental cues that you can use the persuade the other party to give you what you want in a negotiation.

Don’t get me wrong, even though you may not be able to get someone to dance like a chicken in front of 300 people, these techniques are still very powerful and can give you the edge in a negotiation.

So don’t forget to include hypnosis negotiation skill training in your arsenal and be prepared the next time you go into battle.