Getting advice

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

Instructions

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

Transcript

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 … 

Discussion

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Average: 5 (1 vote)
Profile picture for user DJ Singh

Submitted by DJ Singh on Wed, 02/12/2020 - 06:33

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I am an introverted person and feel anxious when I go into public or in a group of people they make me feel anxious every time so I just avoid going into public.
Profile picture for user javibuendi

Submitted by javibuendi on Fri, 20/11/2020 - 11:02

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I think anxiety appears mainly when you feel that you do not have control of something. The people that suffer this disorder, it is because they are obsessed with control their full future, every single detail about what is going to happen. And obviously, It is imposible to reach that purpose because life is unpredictable. In my case, as a football trainer, I sometimes feel a little bit anxious preparing the training. I imagine what the exercises are going to be and how I want the kids to perform them. I repeat it over and over in my mind and therefore I start feeling overwhelmed. It has no sense, because if life is unpredictable, children are even more. So, my piece of advice for you, and myself, is do not overthink so much, and be ready to adapt to any situation that arise to you. Cheers from Madrid.
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Submitted by danisep on Thu, 19/11/2020 - 17:34

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I feel anxious because I don’t have job I finished university the last year and I still here stuck looking for a job in a country with awful economy, I was thinking in start my own web business but I need money to start it I thought seriously in call for a loan making an important risk. Everybody have dreams someday travel around the world, buy a house, make a family, help his parents and give support to his family with everything they needs, this situation is frustrating and sad. But everything going to be better, I know.

Submitted by Ugulhan on Fri, 23/10/2020 - 08:30

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When people look at you and make a faking smile, particularly at work or study.

Submitted by zahid ali shah on Wed, 07/10/2020 - 08:56

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what make me anxious to talk to teacher if i had not completed the assignments or asking to them for help.To meet new people who are elder then me also makes me anxious.
Profile picture for user Hennadii

Submitted by Hennadii on Fri, 18/09/2020 - 15:24

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What makes me feel nervous? Well, actually a lot of things. First of all, my future. As a father of two kids, I badly want to be confident in my future, in terms of finance. Parentship is a great responsibility. You brought your kids in this world and have to give them everything they need: warm and safe house, food, clothes, education, medicine, toys, of course, etc. I think every parent in the world fears losing one's job and become insolvent, so do I. Another thing, that makes me sad and anxious, it's the present situation in my country. Unfortunately, the war came in our state. Some territory is occupated, many people dead, and, despite the war activity is decline a bit, almost every week we lose another soldier in this conflict. In this case, I can't name the life in my country very safe and happy. All of us continue to think about another war escalation so close to our houses. There are lots of other problems that I keep in mind: bad ecology, financial crisis, the high level of corruption and criminality here. Well, that's it.
Profile picture for user Aghaton

Submitted by Aghaton on Mon, 24/08/2020 - 12:29

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Hello team, my greatest anxiety is when I do not meet the marks target in my studying. For example, last year when I had a plan to get an A from the subject of bibliographic control and thinks got different when I had B+ Instead

Submitted by fahri on Tue, 11/08/2020 - 04:33

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Dear team. From the lesson above. 'Maybe even a lot' Is that the same if he say :' maybe happening many time' ? Is it same meaning or not?? Thank you very much for your answer

Hello fahri,

The phrase here describes how bad the speaker's struggles have been, not how often:

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.

The contrast here is struggling a bit (not such a terrible problem) and maybe even a lot (a serious problem).

 

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

I can't tell you how much I appreciate this answer. Thanks a lot sir