Getting advice

Getting advice

Listen to someone getting advice from a friend to practise and improve your listening skills.

Do the preparation task first. Then listen to the audio and do the exercises.



Clara: Hi, how are you? I haven't seen you in class for a while.

Ben: Good, thanks. You? 

Clara: Great, as long as I don't think too hard about all the essays I have to write this term!

Ben: Yeah … 

Clara: Hey, are you OK?

Ben: I have to admit, I'm struggling a bit. Maybe even a lot. I've not been sleeping well at all and then I can't concentrate. And all these things are just going around and around in my head.

Clara: Mmm … that doesn't sound good. So, you're sleeping badly and you can't concentrate. Is that all it is, do you think?

Ben: Well, if I'm honest, it's more than that. I'm starting to dread going outside. I find myself worrying about stupid things like what if I forget the way home. Or, what if I go to class thinking it's Monday but actually it's Friday and I'm in the wrong place at the wrong time. It sounds even more stupid when I say it out loud. It took me two hours to leave the house today.

Clara: It doesn't sound stupid at all. It actually sounds a lot like me last year.

Ben: Really? But you're so together!

Clara: I've learned to be, but even I still have bad days. I used to have panic attacks and everything. When you were trying to leave the house today, how did you feel?

Ben: Like I couldn't breathe. And my heart was going way too fast.

Clara: Hmm … that sounds like a panic attack to me.

Ben: I thought I was going to die.

Clara: You'd be surprised how common they are. Loads of people have them, they just don't talk about it.

Ben: How did you get over them?

Clara: I actually talked to a doctor about it, and you should too. But I learned some practical things as well. Though they're easier said than done, and they're going to sound weird, so hear me out, OK?

Ben: OK …

Clara: So, one thing I did was to try to reduce the power of the anxiety and the panic attacks when they came. So – and this may sound strange – at a time when you're feeling safe and OK, you literally do things that make your heart start racing faster and your breathing speed up. Like spinning around on a chair until you're dizzy or hyperventilating so you're short of breath.

Ben: That sounds awful!

Clara: It is, but it means you get used to the symptoms, so they feel less scary. 

Ben: Right. 

Clara: Then you have to deliberately do the things that usually make you feel panic. So, if it's going to class on Monday and being scared you've got the wrong day, on Monday you go to class. If you let the anxiety control you by making you stay at home, it just makes it worse the next time you really do have to go out.

Ben: And what did you do if a panic attack came anyway?

Clara: I had a distraction plan. So, I walked everywhere instead of taking the bus because the exercise helped, but also I did things like count trees or red cars or something. Whatever it was didn't matter, as long as I had something else to focus on.

Ben: I can't tell you how much I appreciate this. I thought … 


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Language level


Average: 4.2 (45 votes)
Profile picture for user OlaIELTS

Submitted by OlaIELTS on Fri, 08/05/2020 - 15:28

What make me nervous or anxious is normally on achievement of a particular goal or task.

Submitted by SlarkCZ on Mon, 06/04/2020 - 11:39

This practice is very good, I guess it is so real because you make scared when you have big exam. I mean Maturita this is exam in our country and it is so hard. It is test by Czech language, English language or Math and your skills of this school. I mean like Mechanic or Teacher or Doctor.

Submitted by yoyoraw on Tue, 31/03/2020 - 14:15

Actually, there are lots of things that make me nervous one of them is being scared to not be able to achieve something that i really want to acomplish not because i do not feel confident of my myself its just because sometimes i feel like I am not working enough.

Submitted by elsanty224 on Thu, 27/02/2020 - 13:19

when i have to do medical test, over all, magnetic resonance. It's to hard doing this test to me. Beacuse you must to go into a kind of metal tunnel and the space is very reduced. You feel pretty claustrophobic, you feel there's no any air, and you can feel you're short of breath Besides, this machine makes a lot of noise, in fact you must to use ear plugs. I feel quite anxious and i dread going into this machine You can't move during the test, this makes more difficult the situation, because you know if you move, the test has to be repeated. i learnt to not lossing the control in this kind of medical tests and got over it, my distraction plan was, thinking about pleased things or maybe i start to make up stories on my mind, i imagine i'm a football player and i'm helping my team to win the championship. It's indispensable thinking about enjoyable things although it's not easy, in fact there are new medical therapies for coming over it about this sort of phobies and even there are some hospitals that include gadgets for entertaiment you during the test.

Submitted by armando on Tue, 11/02/2020 - 07:44

I didn't felt like that ever until i began learn english, sometimes i feel like I'm stuck and iI don't know what else i have to do to understand it...

Submitted by I P on Sun, 05/01/2020 - 18:45

I would say that have had a lot of stressful situation in my life, so that cause some problem such as anxiety or panic attack, I get anxious sometimes as I came in place, and there were a lot of people ( all of them expecting to talk or to be more included),but u need more time for that, someone calls that social anxiety
Profile picture for user Magedelabd

Submitted by Magedelabd on Tue, 10/12/2019 - 17:24

What makes me nervous is to meet stupid people .

Submitted by HelianG on Sat, 23/11/2019 - 19:24

it may sound weird but I feel anxious when I see crowded places,either in photos or in real life,I just feel like if get in I will not be able to get out,like I am going to get stuck in for good.