Hello my dear friends. Whether you're a teacher or a student, do you ever lose your MOJO? (A kind of hidden motivation that allows someone to be very effective, successful, etc.) I can say my friends that I am sometimes a victim to losing my mojo. 

Maybe you're feeling down as a teacher where everything that can go wrong does go wrong. You feel despair, lack of inspiration and simply want to pack your bags and head to the nearest airport to escape from it all. Maybe you're a student and marks seems to be on a down-curve. Maybe information goes in one ear and out the other and you feel progress is going nowhere. 

So what to do? Paul's advice coming up 🤗

1) Set yourself only ONE doable goal for the time being rather than have loads. If you're a teacher, maybe just watch a Youtube video on an aspect of the job previously unknown then try it out. You could even have a week away from the textbook and do your own thing to teach your students to reignite your self-worth. As a student, maybe you could spend a few days away from something that might get you down like essays or listening exercises. Instead take on an aspect of learning that you tend to enjoy so you feel that progress afterwards.

2) Get excited about something. Sounds obvious but many don't do it. When I am feeling in a slump, I can talk to those close to me about new business ideas. And when I feel the support, I feel I could realize my ideas, I thus become exited about the possibility of implementing these new ideas and my motivation is back. In teaching, you could approach lesson planning in a different way or do something outside the job like taking up a new hobby to get you excited. You can then take that momentum into the classroom. Talk to your fellow teachers about your lessons. You'll feel the fire!

3) Find inspiration. Talk to someone like a family member, friend or colleague who you might look up to. Look at the example they are setting (if a good one). It could be someone you don't know by reading a blog, autobiography. I recently read a book about leadership by a guy who was a British soldier and went through hell in his life and is now a famous celebrity. His words inspired me and after that I posted here on VK that I was going to write a book.

4) Understand the truth and think about it daily. Motivation is not a constant. We all get tired and stressed. It's a part of life and if you decide to stay in your shell well away from the harms of life, you'll never grow up and build strength to deal with those low moments. You need to keep at it during the hard times. So when teaching goes wrong at times, understand that it's temporary and follow the advice above. Know that you'll get your mojo back pretty quickly. Also by thinking about your goal and fighting towards that aim, that will pump you full of enthusiasm. 

5) Last one. Ready? Doing small things can put a smile on your face and turn around your mood which will thus return your mojo. Do you know what I immediately did when I woke up this morning? I made my bed. And I made it look really nice. So if I have a shit day where everything goes wrong, at least I come back to a welcoming bed. Pushing yourself to do small things can make a big difference to your mojo in the long run. Maybe as a teacher you might go through some old textbooks to familiarize yourself. Who knows, you might find some old lost idea that can provide an amazing lesson. As a student, maybe you can you can spend 10 minutes to reorganize your notes. You might come across some old forgotten vocab whilst doing that.

Defining English as an International Language
As Jenkins (2006) points out, attention to the term English as an International Language (EIL) is relatively new to the TESOL profession. She notes that in the 1991 anniversary of the TESOL Quarterly, almost no attention was given to the idea of World Englishes and at that time the term English as a Lingua Franca was not yet even coined. Yet by the 40th anniversary of the journal both terms were assigned a dedicated slot. Although on occasion the three terms – World Englishes, English as a Lingua Franca and English as an International Language – are used interchangeably, it is important to distinguish their different assumptions and focus.

World Englishes (WE) is often viewed in one of three perspectives (Bolton, 2004). The first is a broad definition, which includes all varieties of English spoken around the world, including Englishes spoken in what Kachru (1985) refers to as the Inner Circle (where English is spoken as a first language), the Outer Circle (where English is one of several official languages of the country) and the Expanding Circle (where English is required as a foreign language but has no special status as an official language). This definition of World Englishes is often used interchangeably with international English and global English (Jenkins, 2006). The second definition of World Englishes is a narrow definition that includes only those varieties of English spoken in what Kachru terms the outer circle, including such varieties as Nigerian English, Jamaican English and Malaysian English. This definition of World Englishes is at times also labelled as nativized, indigenized or institutionalized English. The third definition overlaps with the second view, but it emphasizes the pluricentric view of English in which equal respect is given to all varieties of English. However, it is important to note that all three perspectives share a view of the study of English as an investigation of the linguistic features that particular speakers typically employ.

What does such a perspective imply for pedagogy? In general, classrooms that focus on this perspective devote the majority of their curriculum to distinguishing the particular linguistic features of English spoken in specific areas of the world. These localized varieties are sometimes viewed as the target learning model or linguistic norm for the area, resulting in endonormative standards. Some also emphasize the fact that while these varieties differ in certain phonological, morphological, syntactic and semantic features, all should be accorded equal status and respect.

English as a Lingua Franca (ELF) has traditionally been defined as ‘interactions between members of two or more different linguacultures in English, for none of whom English is the mother tongue’ (House, 1999: 74). In other words, ELF is the study of the type of language that is used when second language speakers from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds interact. By definition, all first language speakers of English are excluded from the focus of ELF investigations. Jenkins (2006) argues quite strongly that the purpose of ELF research is essentially to document the features of interactions between second language speakers of English and in no way is meant to depict a particular variety of English that should become the standard for second language speakers. As she puts it:

The existence of ELF is not intended to imply that learners should aim for an English that is identical in all respects. ELF researchers do not believe any such monolithic variety of English does or ever will exist. Rather, they believe that anyone participating in international communication needs to be familiar with, and have in their linguistic repertoire for use, as and when appropriate, certain forms (phonological, lexicogrammatical, etc.) that are widely used and widely intelligible across groups of English speakers from different first language backgrounds. That is why accommodation is so highly valued in ELF research. At the same time, ELF does not at all discourage speakers from learning and using their local variety in local communicative contexts, regardless of whether this is an inner, outer, or expanding circle English (Jenkins, 2006: 161).

This perspective has several pedagogical implications. First, it focusses on both the features of second language speakers’ interactions but it also highlights the importance of developing strategies to remedy breakdowns in communication. It also encourages second language speakers to be bidialectal in their use of English, mastering both local and more international varieties of English. Hence, Singaporeans, for example, would be encouraged to master and use both Standard Singaporean English and Singlish and to use each when and where appropriate.
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