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5 Ways You Can Improve Your Vocabulary

by Sunbal Razzaq
6 minutes read
5 Ways You Can Improve Your Vocabulary

Several advantages come with the betterment of one’s vocabulary. You can clearly express yourself more, comprehend things faster, and sound more learned. An extensive vocabulary will help you land jobs and leave lasting impressions. It’s something that adds to the quality of your everyday life.

5 Ways You Can Improve Your Vocabulary

But how exactly do we broaden our vocabulary? The most popular suggestion seems to be reading novels or lifestyle books. But we understand that reading those may not be for everyone. So if you still want the benefits of strengthening your vocabulary without reading dozens of books, read on. 

Here are six other ways you can improve your vocabulary. 

Word of the Day 

The word-of-the-day practice involves introducing yourself to a new word every day. This practice is a great way to exercise your mind continually. It’s your vocabulary’s version of hitting the gym. And if your word stock “hits the gym” 365 days a year, the collection will be pretty impressive.

Several popular websites (especially educational ones) feature a new word daily. For example,  The New York Times provides excellent daily terms and several examples of how to use them in a sentence. Other sites also worth mentioning are Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com

If one word a day proves too much, you can start with one to three words weekly and build your way up. Keeping a notebook and writing down the words and their definitions will help you remember. You can also try using it the next time you have a conversation.  

Write It Down 

Have you ever heard of a word that sounded familiar, but you didn’t know the meaning? Chances are you’ve heard it before but didn’t look up the definition or completely forgot what it meant after looking it up. You’d probably have remembered what it meant had you written it down and used it. 

Such instances are why it’s essential to write unfamiliar words down. When you take the time to write and learn its definition, you’re more likely to remember and use it. Repeated use will eventually make the word a permanent resident in your vocabulary. 

If you’re thinking, “Oh, I’ll just remember the word and look it up later.” Don’t. You’re more likely to forget than you are to remember. Please write it down! 

Talk to Different People 

Keeping a group of friends with the same interests and doing the same things isn’t bad. After all, birds with the same feathers flock together. However, if you’re determined to increase your vocabulary (and general knowledge), keeping people with different interests may be helpful. 

These folks would know interests that extend to their vocabularies. When conversing with them, not only will you increase your knowledge, but you’ll also encounter new or familiar words that you can start using yourself. 

It’s a great way to make new friends, strengthen your relationships, enjoy a variety of conversations, and learn new words! 

Play Word Games 

This way is perhaps the crowd favourite. Word games are an excellent way to encounter new words. It places learning in a fun light and doesn’t feel like a chore. If “Word of the Day” is our vocabulary’s equivalent of hitting the gym, then playing word games is the equivalent of having fun in sports. 

With word games, your mind engages and learns but still has fun. Popular games include Text Twist, Bookworm Adventures, and Scrabble. You can access these online or download the apps. If you ever hit terms you can’t figure out, don’t worry. A good deal of online tools can help you to unscramble words to your advantage.

Avoid “Very” 

“Very” is a common word trendy for many people. It’s the word you probably learned at home to express a greater degree of something. However, the term “very” can often make us lazy. Because almost always, there’s a better word for “very” with an adjective or adverb. 

“Very hungry” could be “ravenous” or “famished.” “Very tired” could be “exhausted.” There are roughly 171,000 words in the English language alone (and approximately 41,000 more are obsolete). For instance, using “very sad” to describe a more significant degree of your feelings instead of “melancholic” seems like a waste.  

While you can use “very” sparingly, it is better to leave it where you discovered it—in grade school. Besides, you can always use a thesaurus if you’re having trouble figuring out a better word. Online thesauruses and thesaurus apps are also free and accessible.  

Make Better Use of Your Free Time 

Although building one’s vocabulary isn’t easy, it’s well worth it. Other pastimes and hobbies may be more entertaining, but this makes your mind sharper. Consider it to be an excellent investment in one’s self. Continue the journey of building your vocabulary, and before you know it, you’ll be a whiz with your words!

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