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The Feel Good English Podcast

Language Learning Podcasts

Become more fluent in English and life with inspiring English lessons based on the best non-fiction books and Ted Talks. Feel Good English is personal growth for English learners. Let's grow together! Get transcripts, extra lessons and connect with Kevin at


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Become more fluent in English and life with inspiring English lessons based on the best non-fiction books and Ted Talks. Feel Good English is personal growth for English learners. Let's grow together! Get transcripts, extra lessons and connect with Kevin at



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#119 Shhh - I'm Meditating "10% Happier" By Dan Harris

3/1/2018 To start this episode, let me ask you something. Do you have a voice inside your head? Like, do you have “something” inside of you that speaks to you? As weird as that sounds, I bet you do. And I’m not talking about “hearing voices” in your head, like a crazy person might, but just that self-talk we all have that guides us, or at least tries really hard to guide us. It’s that voice inside us that starts having a conversation as soon as we open our eyes in the morning. The voice is obsessed with the past, and also obsessed with the future. So is that voice us? Is that who we are? Or is it just part of us? And is there a way to tame this voice? To not be blindly controlled by it? I recently read a book that was recommended by one of my students. The book is called “10% Happier” by Dan Harris. This book attempts to convince skeptics on the benefits of meditation, by taking a very practical approach to the science behind this mindfulness practice, and showing you how and why letting go of your ego is important for living a stress-free life. So that voice in your head, we can refer to that as the ego. E-G-O. I’ve talked about the ego before. It can get in your way, make you do dumb things, and keep you from connecting with others on a deeper level. And the author of this book talks a lot about the experiences that led him to discover the benefits of meditation, but I’ll just sum it up so we can focus more on what meditation is and how you can start doing it, if you don’t meditate that is.


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#118 How to Actually Live a Better Life - "A Guide to the Good Life"

Get the transcript at Today I’m going to teach you a lesson from a book called “A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy” by William Braxton Irvine. In this book, Irvine offers a refreshing presentation of Stoicism, showing how this ancient philosophy can still direct us toward a better life. I’m only going to share one lesson from this book, a lesson on how to get through the grocery store checkout line much faster, just kidding, but one very valuable lesson which will show you how the teachings of Stoicism can help us be little more grounded in today’s crazy world. Before I get into that, if you’re new here, or aren’t that new but still only put Feel Good English in your ears, I also have something for your eyes. Something to read, as I send out weekly emails that contain short interesting thoughts to thousands of interested English learners. If you want to receive those weekly emails, go to and look for the bear. The bear will be waiting for you on my website to help you sign up. The bear works for me for free, and the email is free too! Isn’t that nice? Now enough bear talk, let’s get into the lesson.


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#117 The Dumb Things We All Do - "Predictably Irrational" by Dan Ariely

Get the transcript at Today I have some ideas from a very interesting book called “Predictably Irrational” by Dan Ariely. And the main point in this book, the overall message is that much of our behavior is misguided, irrational. Through research and study, the author has found that a lot of this irrational behavior is also predictable, which means there are very human, and natural reasons we behave this way.


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#116 How to Be Yourself - "Psycho-Cybernetics" by Maxwell Maltz

Get the transcript at To get started with today’s topic, I got a question for you. What kind of person are you? Are you motivated? Are you lazy? Are you always running late? Are you a leader or a follower? Are you good at sports? And where did those beliefs come from? A former teacher, your friends who have labeled you a certain way, or maybe simply from yourself? We all have an image of the type of person we are. Some of these images are positive, but some are detrimental to moving forward and making positive changes. We use stories to understand the world, but sometimes we can make ourselves the villain without thinking twice about the consequences of that narrative. For example, if you think of yourself as a failure, you’ll quite likely fail. Conversely, if you consider yourself successful, you’ll find ways to succeed. If you think you’re bad at learning languages, well, you might subconsciously resist becoming a great English speaker. That’s dangerous. And that’s the basic idea from the book I recently read, how our self image dictates our behavior. The book is called “Psycho-Cybernetics” by Maxwell Maltz. It was published in 1960, so it’s been around a few years, but the book is great. I read a lot, obviously, and i read a lot of regurgitated ideas. People take some basic self-help ideas and write their own book about them. Put their name on them. Nothing really special there. But this book, even though it’s from many decades ago, I found plenty of interesting ideas I hadn’t thought of or read about before. I’m going to focus on one chapter in this book; keep it simple. The ideas in this chapter stuck out to me the most and I want to share them with you because I think they’re so relevant to not just life in general, but to speaking a foreign language. Here I go again, connecting life lessons with English learning. You ready?


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#115 Biggest Lessons of the Year - Part 2

Get the transcript at The podcast that blends, mixes, English learning with personal development. Making your time spent with English more inspiring, enlightening, and...exciting? This is the last episode of 2017, well, it’s literally the first episode of 2018, but I am still going to touch on a couple ideas from 2017, two BIG ideas I shared with you that I consider to be so important. Both of these are ideas are really simple, straight to the point, but can have a big impact on behavior. And I’m going to go into these two ideas, going to review them with you today because you can take these two concepts and apply them to your life this coming year. They can help you stay strong and help you stay focused, two things I often need help with.


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#114 Biggest Lessons of the Year - Part 1

Get the transcript at I have a lesson for you today that will be good for speaking practice. I want you to speak today, either out loud so people think you talk to yourself like a crazy person, or in your head, so you can create voices in your head that speak English. So you’ll either be crazy and talk to yourself or you’ll have voices in your English that speak English. Got it? It’s almost the end of the year, so I wanted to do a bit of a yearly review. Review some of the biggest, most popular, and also what I consider to be the most important lessons I learned with you this year. But I want you to get involved today, so I am going to bring you in on the conversation. I’m going to ask you some questions about what I talk about, and you should answer them. If you ever hear me say the word, “blank”, that means you need to fill in the “blank” with a word. So if I said, “I really like “blank”, you would say, “Kevin, I really like...clowns” Make sense? So review with me some great lessons from this year , use you mouth a bit, or use your internal mouth, whatever the hell that is, and feel good!


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#113 Lindsay McMahon - Perfection is the Enemy

Get the transcript at Today I have something special for you. Well, I guess it’s always special, right? But today is extra special. It’s not going to be just me on the show, I brought someone else on the show to talk about life-changing topics. Lindsay McMahon from AllEarsEnglish will be on the show today, talking about the main premise behind her very popular show The AllEarsEnligsh podcast, the importance of connection, not perfection. More specifically, what gets in the way of connection when trying to communicate with others. Get in the way of means, by the way, to obstruct, become an obstacle, prevent from happening. So we’re going to talk about three things that prevent us from connecting with others when speaking English. And I’ll also be stopping the interview periodically to ask you some questions. I’m also going to stop the interview to go deeper into what was talked about, help you understand what we’re saying, and to slow it all a down a bit. I hope you enjoy it. But more than that, I hope today’s episode helps you focus on connection more than perfection because perfection can be such a terrible enemy!


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#112 How Stress Can Make you Stronger - "Antifragile"

Get the premium lesson at I’m going to talk about a concept today, a pretty complicated one. A concept that’ll stretch your mind, make you think, possibly make your mind stronger. And speaking of stronger, let’s first talk about muscles. How do we build muscle at the gym? I mean, how do we really build muscle? By going to the gym and lifting a light amount of weight, many many times? Or by pushing your muscles beyond their limit? Beyond what they’re used to, what they’re accustomed to? Well, if you’re not too knowledgeable about building muscles it works like this... When you go to the gym and lift really heavy weights, when you feel the burn and get close to your limit, but push on and do just one more rep, one more repetition, that’s when muscle growth happens. This happens because the fragile parts, the fragile tissue in your muscles, are broken down, are ripped you could say. You give a “shock” to your muscles by surprising them with heavier weight than they’re used to. That’s how stress and shock can prepare your body for even bigger stress. And it’s the building of this “extra capacity” to avoid future shock that I’m going to talk about today. What we are going to think about is how shock, stress, and volatility make things stronger. More resilient. This concept is based on a book called “Antifragile” by Nassim Nicholas Taleb. This book reveals how some systems thrive on shock, volatility, and uncertainty, and when things allow for breakage, like muscles, it’s actually a good thing.


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#111 WHY! -"Start with Why" by Simon Sinek

Get the premium lesson at Today we’re going to talk about a Ted Talk. Well, and a book. We are going to discover the reason why some people and some companies are so influential. We often think that if someone tells you exactly what they can do for you and how they do it then we’ll be convinced. But it’s actually not the case. If you want people to follow you, it’s important to know that they won’t care much about what you do, but why you do what you do. It’s all about the why. Also in today’s episode, I’m going to talk about how to motivate people, how to motivate yourself when you’re feeling stuck and frustrated and also how to get inspired in life and work. These ideas come from one of the most popular Ted Talks of all time by a guy named Simon Sinek. It’s all based on a very powerful idea. And I’m going to share his ideas with you, I’ll play some of his talk so you can hear someone else’s English, and I will also talk a little about the “Why” behind Feel Good English.


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#110 How to Deal with People - "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie

Get the Premium lesson at in today’s episode, I am going to teach you how to deal with people, well how to deal with people better. I’m going to pull lessons from the very popular and classic book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie. Since “How to Win Friends & Influence People” was published in 1936, it has sold millions and millions of copies. The advice contained in the book is deceptively simple, but remains as effective as ever. Just adhering to simple guidelines like smiling when meeting someone and remembering their first name can help anyone become more likable and influential. I am going to mainly talk about the first two parts of the book, how to deal with people and also how to communicate better with people. Both of these parts, and the lessons contained within Both of these parts, and the lessons contained within them, can help you become better liked by your peers, or even more liked if your peers already think you’re a superstar, and they can also help you deal with difficult people, difficult people at work, school, maybe at home, wherever. So listen to the lesson a few times, pay attention to new English words you hear, and also, really think about what is being taught. If you need to pause the audio to think about something and apply what I talk about to your life, do that!


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#109 Finding the Courage to Connect With Others

Get the premium lesson for this at Today I have an episode based on two words. That’s it, two English words. But these two words affect our lives so much. One of these words is responsible for our loneliness, depression, our feelings of never having enough. It causes hate, and fights, and divorce. It makes us want to put our heads in the sand. And the other word is the solution to the first word. The second word makes us feel more connected to others, more fulfilled, more courageous, and you’ll be happy to know this word, or applying this word to your life, will also help you become a badass confident English speaker. It’s kind of the secret to success with learning a foreign language.


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#108 Resisting Personal Growth - My Story

Get the premium lesson at Today I’m going to get a bit personal. I’m going to tell you something that recently happened in my life that could have ended pretty terribly, but instead, the situation turned into a huge life-lesson for me! Thank God. I recently had a realization that ended months of conflict that I was dealing with. Yes, I too suffer at times, and there is nothing wrong with that. Suffering can show exactly where we need to change. And what happened to me was definitely life-changing. I’m going to share with you what was happening in my life that led to this realization, with the hopes of not just giving you something to listen to and to learn new English from, but also to show you how and why you might fall into the same situation that I did, and how to get out of it, or even avoid it.


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#107 Loving Your Limits - A Ted Talk with Amy Purdy

Go premium at We as humans love the stories of incredible successes. Stories of people doing things that seem impossible. But I got to thinking, “you know when something terrible happens to someone, this person becomes limited to just what’s in front of them. Their options have been taken away from them. And it seems that it’s exactly because their life becomes limited that their life is transformed. It’s as if going through something traumatic is the fuel, or you could say the catalyst, that leads to great transformation. Now I’m not saying we should try to seek out tragedies, don’t do that, please. But what if we could tap into, meaning “utilize”, tap into what these people feel when they are faced with such limitations. These limitations have forced them to be extremely creative, inspired them, and have helped them find a whole new level of motivation. What can we learn from these stories? And how can we apply what they discovered to our lives without having to go through such a tragic event? Is it even possible? That’s what I’m going to talk about today, and I found a Ted Talk that I think is very relevant to these questions.


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#106 Goals are for Losers - "How to Fail at Everything and Still Win Big" by Scott Adams

Get the premium lessons at In January, with a pen, paper, and a lot of motivation, I plan out my whole year and what I want to see happen. Well, you know what, my year hasn’t ever really fallen nicely in line with my goals. Can you believe that? Things change. Goals change. Life happens. Opportunities you weren’t expecting come into your life, and often opportunities you were expecting don’t come. It can be frustrating. But there’s gotta be a better way! And I think I found one. A better way. I looked for a better approach. One that doesn’t make me feel disappointed in myself when I remember that I haven’t reached my original, yearly goals because I often don’t reach the original goals I set for myself. I’m realizing more and more how hard it is, especially in business, to plan far in the future when not knowing what will come your way. Today I am going to talk about goals. But not an inspirational lesson on how to reach every goal you set, but why you shouldn’t live a life focused on goals. It’s unhealthy. And possibly even less productive than another approach. What’s that other approach? I’m not going to tell you. Well, not yet. Keep listening!


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#105 Expect the Worst - "The Antidote" by Oliver Burkeman

Get the premium English lesson at Today’s lesson might be a little shocking for some of you, especially because it’s coming from me, someone who talks a lot about personal development. Why shocking? Because today’s episode is on a book that pretty much disrupts a lot of the self-help genre. The self-help genre covers subjects like motivation, how to be happier, how to be more productive, the importance of goal setting, basically, self-help books teach us how to be better humans. I talk about a lot of these topics here on the podcast, and I do think there are valuable lessons to be learned. But… like I said, the book I read for today’s episode is different. The name of the book is “The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking” by Oliver Burkeman. If you’re someone who thinks that all the self-help books on the power of thinking positively, and books like “The Secret” are garbage, well, you’d love this book. And... if you’re like me, very open to different perspectives, philosophies and different approaches to life, you’ll also find some value in this book.


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#104 Now or Never: The 5 Second Rule

Get the transcript at When you have an idea about doing something, something you know would be valuable to your life, do you often stop and think about it, then end up not doing that “something”? This happens a lot! It happens to me, a lot! There’s a voice inside my head that keeps me from doing what’s important. Does this happen to you? According to the author of a book called “The 5 Second Rule”, the author’s name is Mel Robbins, the secret to being more confident and successful comes down to making the right decision in the 5 seconds after you have an idea. You can’t let those 5 seconds kill your dreams!


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#103 How to be happier: "Hardwiring Happiness" by Rick Hanson

Get the transcript at Today we are going to talk about happiness. We all like feeling happy, right? Well, if you don't like feeling happy, well then you either need some professional help, which I hope you get, or you're a freak! But why do we always focus on the negative? Well, our brains evolved this way. It's an ancient survival mechanism, actually. We needed to learn quickly from bad experiences. This obsession with the negative continues even until today, though we don't need this as a survival mechanism anymore. In the book, "Hardwiring Happiness" by Rick Hanson, we learn why we are prone to, (have the tendency to, inclined to) worry about the past, focus on fears, and past hurts, and quite often, ignore positive experiences.


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#102 Advanced grammar lesson: used to vs. to be used to

6/13/2017 Let me help you correct some of the most common advanced grammar mistakes. There are two different phrases that often get mixed up. One is easy, and one is complex. But even the easy one needs to be explained, and the complex one, well, that one too. The first is about past habits, or something that existed or was true in the past, but doesn’t exist or isn’t true anymore. The second is about a feeling you have about something. A – past habit or truth B – a feeling (present, past, future)


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#101 The Smallest Decisions Matter Most: "The Compound Effect" by Darren Hardy

Get the transcript at Does it ever feel like you give up pretty quickly after deciding to do something positive for your life? You want to make a big change or add a big skill to start strong but only a few days or sometimes a few weeks later you give up, and we feel bad when this happens. Or do you constantly notice yourself doing things that you know aren't good for you, aren't healthy, aren't positive, aren't helping you get closer to the life that you ideally would like to live? Well, I'm going to talk about a book today called “The Compound Effect” by Deron Hardy and it's going to tackle these issues. Most of us struggle at times with reaching our goals, and according to the book “The Compound Effect” this comes down to, this is all based on our daily habits, the choices we make from moment to moment. If this sounds stressful, like “ Well, I'm going to talk about a book today called “The Compound Effect” by Deron Hardy and it's going to tackle these issues. Most of us struggle at times with reaching our goals, and according to the book “The Compound Effect” this comes down to, this is all based on our daily habits, the choices we make from moment to moment. If this sounds stressful, like “ If this sounds stressful, like “Uh oh, Kevin I don't want to think about my choices every moment!” it shouldn't. There are tactics and strategies from the book that we can start applying to our life to help us create daily routines based on our goals. Getting clarity on what we should be doing and what we should not be doing, and also some tips on how to start adding positive habits into our life. So I'm going to talk about some key principles from this book, I hope it's helpful.


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#100 - #100!!!

Get the transcript at Learn some behind-the-scenes info about the podcast after 100 episodes. I'll share some listener numbers, how the podcast has changed, and what's coming in the future.