How to Improve Your Verbal Fluency

Do you feel as though you lack verbal fluency? Would you like to improve it? If you're able to put these tips into practice, your communication skills will get much better.
How to Improve Your Verbal Fluency

Last update: 27 May, 2022

There are many people who are better public speakers than others. Why is this? Today, you’ll find out how to improve your verbal fluency, a skill which will allow you to improve your public speaking.

Verbal fluency is nothing more than the ability to initiate a conversation with someone spontaneously, improvise a presentation based on how your audience responds, and present yourself in a natural way.

Verbal Fluency and Insecurities

A woman extending a microphone

Insecurities and verbal fluency don’t go well together at all. This is because in order to successful express yourself in practice you need to be sure of yourself and have a healthy self-esteem.

When insecurities loom over you, you might start to think about everything which could go wrong. For example, if you have to give a presentation about a project to other colleagues, the following thoughts might enter your head:

  • “They’re going to ask me something that I don’t know the answer to.”
  • “They’re going to realize that I’m not very prepared.”
  • “What do I do if my mind goes blank?”
  • “I’m bound to forget to mention that one really important point.”

All of these thoughts are groundless. Plus, maybe you don’t know what’s going to happen. Maybe you’ll make a mistake.

The problem with these kinds of “predictions” is that, in the end, you might make them come true.

Therefore, it’s important not to get ahead of yourself and to try and completely change these previous phrases. How can you do this? Here are some ideas:

  • If they ask me something that I don’t know the answer to, don’t worry about it. I can say that I’ll look into it and give them a better answer at a later time.
  • In reality, they won’t realize that I’m not very prepared because I know more about this subject, it’s my project after all.
  • If my mind goes blank, don’t worry about it. I can move onto another subject, or take a deep breath, stay calm, and continue with my presentation. I know more than anyone else about this project.
  • Although I might forget to mention a really important point, I can always rectify this at later time. No problem.

Reading and Improving Your Vocabulary

A woman readying a book to improve her verbal fluency

Reading is a really important activity if you want to improve your verbal fluency. By reading, you’ll have a much greater vocabulary than other people.

The problem is that if you lack verbal fluency, sometimes it’s not insecurity, but a lack of tools which allow you to think fast, communicate what you want to say effectively, and have the right vocabulary to express yourself.

If you have a rich vocabulary, if you get to a point where you don’t know how to explain something, you might be able to do it through synonyms. This will, without a doubt, improve your self-confidence.

The Best Way to Improve Your Verbal Fluency: Practice

A woman taking a class despite her insecurities

Despite your insecurities and a lack of vocabulary, the important thing to do is to practice.

Your social skills will only develop through practice. Forcing yourself into situations in which you need to communicate and interact will help to develop these skills, in particular you verbal fluency.

  • It’s normal to feel insecure at the start, particularly if you identify as a very shy person.
  • However, shyness can be overcome. It just requires will, effort, and constant exposure to the things that we fear.

Do you feel as though you lack verbal fluency? Would you like to improve it? If you’re able to put these tips into practice, your communication skills will get much better.

You’ll learn how to communicate in a clear and concise manner, regardless of the topic, as well as how to maintain your listener’s attention. Your rich vocabulary will be appreciated and furthermore, your audience will feel as though everything is natural and spontaneous.

This will doubtlessly make you a great communicator. However, as we’ve mentioned, theory alone won’t help you. You need to put it into practice.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • García, E., Rodríguez, C., Martín, R., Jiménez, J. E., Hernández, S., & Díaz, A. (2018). Test de Fluidez Verbal: datos normativos y desarrollo evolutivo en el alumnado de primaria. European Journal of Education and Psychology.
  • Ramírez, M., Ostrosky-Solís, F., Ostrosky-Solís, F., Fernández, A., & Ardila-Ardila, A. (2005). Fluidez verbal semántica en hispanohablantes: Un análisis comparativo. Revista de Neurologia.
  • Sangorrín, J. (2005). Disfemia o tartamudez. Revista De Neurología.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.