Do You Have Trouble Understanding People When They Speak Spanish Quickly?

You’ve learned the basics of Spanish, you’ve been through the classes, you can read Spanish but how many times have you been overwhelmed, frustrated and discouraged when people start speaking Spanish faster than you can keep up.

Perhaps, you’ve even felt like giving up, or that you’re just too old to learn Spanish.

I’ve been exactly where you are, and I know how horrible it feels.

The information in this letter will show you ways you can develop your ear for Spanish and overcome the challenges of rapid speech.

Dear friend

I know exactly what it’s like when Spanish seems to just go by too fast. One day you feel like you’re on top of Spanish, then someone speaks to you quickly and all of a sudden you’re completely lost.

I remember one particularly brutal day that made me feel like a complete idiot… all because of a simple misunderstanding.

After 18 months of living in Mexico, I was stumped by the most basic phrase.

I remember it like yesterday. I was in a government office renewing my FM3 Mexican work and residency permit. I handed my papers to the official behind the window. After very deliberately checking the required mountain of paperwork, he looked up and said, “tome asiento”.

“perdón”, I replied

“Tome asiento por favor”.

I just stared back, like a deer caught in the headlights.

Then, after he said it a third time, someone else said in English, “take a seat”.

I felt so stupid.

After 18 months of living in Mexico, how was it possible that and I couldn’t even understand a simple everyday phrase like take a seat?

I felt completely dejected.

I remember thinking…

“Maybe I’ll never master communicating in this language.

Perhaps only kids can really learn properly.

What about all the gringos, who’ve lived here for years and can’t even hold a simple conversation?”

It was a rotten feeling because…

Spanish meant so much to me.

I had dreams of traveling, being able to interact in all the
exciting and interesting places throughout Mexico that I wanted to
visit. And then there was the rest of Latin America and Spain.

There was so much I wanted to do and see.

But without being able to keep up with Spanish, it wouldn’t be the same.

How could it?

That is, unless I went to the typical tourist traps. But I already knew once you get 5 miles away from the Cancuns, Acapulcos and Ibizas keeping up with the way they really speak Spanish is a different ball game.

And I wanted to go where the locals go. I wanted to eat where they eat and to get to know the people where they live. I wanted to explore the real culture.

Unfortunately, being a part of the real speaking Spanish world was starting to feel like a distant dream, and fading very quickly.

Maybe all the effort I was putting in just wasn’t worth it.

After all…

How could I be so useless that I didn’t even understand – take a seat?

You can’t get a much more basic everyday phrase than that can you?

Fortunately… now I know better.

It really wasn’t such a big deal. All that happened was…

I got stung by a comprehension killer.

I was disoriented by a simple synonym.

I’d learned to say sit down, sientese, not take a seat, tome asiento…

From then on I started paying a lot of attention to how
native Spanish speakers communicated amongst themselves.

As I dug deeper, I found many of the ways they expressed
themselves just didn’t make sense to me.

It didn’t relate to the Spanish I’d learned from books and I couldn’t find it in my dictionary.

The deeper I searched the less sense it all made. I either got convoluted grammar analysis, or the one size fits all answer…

“That’s just the way Spanish is”.

So, I decided I’d have to beat my own path and I threw a bunch of textbooks in the dumpster.

What a great feeling that was.

I decided they were so worthless that I wouldn’t even give them away… I figured they did more harm than good and I didn’t want anyone else to suffer.

I found that what the textbooks teach and what you really need to know to thrive in a Spanish speaking country are completely unrelated…

In fact, what is taught in most books is often a handicap to communicating with real people because it destroys the natural flow of conversation.

I kept looking for ways to bridge the language barriers.

In my search for answers, I identified 7 different types of comprehension killers. They are almost never taught in books, courses or classes, yet they hold the keys to greater comprehension, even when Spanish is spoken at a rapid rate.

I’ve also developed a 7 step sequence designed to strengthen your ear for Spanish.

My red face was simply caused by not knowing a commonly used synonym. A very simple comprehension killer to overcome… especially when you learn the most frequently used synonyms

Unfortunately, the other comprehension killers aren’t always as gentle or easily noticed as synonyms. Some have meanings that are almost invisible to English speakers.

What I’m talking about is the way words are combined to create totally different meanings from what you might expect.

Let me explain…

Do you know the meanings of these words? mucho, bien, más, cuando, dar, quiere, cada, como, luz, decir, no, una, si, vez, caer, cuánto, tener, de, que.

Most of the words look very familiar right?

How many do you know?

I expect you know at least 10-15 of those words, perhaps more.

What if we put the words together, do you know the meanings of the following word combinations?

1. cuando mucho
2. cada cuánto?
3. dar a luz
4. tiene que
5. caer bien
6. cómo no
7. cómo si
8. de una vez
9. quiere decir
10. más bien

Here’s a tip: the meanings are very different from the individual words.

If you don’t know the combined meanings, you’ll get confused about what people are saying to you, and…

When you’re confused, Spanish seems faster than it really is.

Here’s what those word combinations mean.

The answers may surprise you…

1. cuando mucho – at the most
2. cada cuánto? – how often?
3. dar a luz – to give birth to
4. tiene que – have to/has to (you should know this one)
5. caer bien – to be fond of/to like
6. cómo no – why not, of course
7. cómo si – as if
8. de una vez – once and for all
9. quiere decir – mean/means
10. más bien – rather/instead


Some combinations seem to have nothing to do with the individual words.

These word combinations are called collocations.

An essential element in understanding Spanish almost nobody ever talks about.

I believe they are much more important than the typical grammar path of ser vs estar and por vs para.

Learn the most common collocations, the most frequently used synonyms and your comprehension of spoken Spanish has to improve.

Learn to recognize and build your understanding of the comprehension killers and your understanding of
Spanish will go from black and white to color.

Take active steps to strengthen and fine tune your ear to the pace of Spanish and it’ll be like going from black and white to color to high definition.

It’ll help you deal with words and phrases coming at a mile a minute.

You know what I mean right, when…

Spanish goes by so fast, it doesn’t even sound like individual words,
it sounds like one long continuous word.


“tabien saleporca”

The machine gun blast

“Wha wha what?”

It’s ok you can get out that way.


vrooooooommmmm a formula one car goes flying by…



Have you spoken with my daughters?


At times it just seems sooooooo fast.

What can we possible do, besides saying, más despacio por favor?

There’s actually plenty we can do.

Instead of getting so caught up in analysis of very minor points of grammar…

Why not address these comprehension killers head on?

Why not take steps to systematically open up your ears in lessons that take the strain out of listening?

If you remember back to my embarrassing situation when I couldn’t even respond to “take a seat”…

Imagine if someone had shown me the most commonly used synonyms? Laid them out, not in a list, but in a
step by step process to recognize synonyms instantly?

Would I have been so deflated?


Embarrassment averted.

Red face saved

Confidence maintained.

Frankly, finding ways to improve your ear for Spanish has been my biggest challenge. There’s nothing to draw upon. I had to create everything from scratch.

I’ve haven’t seen anyone else address the comprehension killers in a step by step process…

I haven’t seen anyone willing to even admit that learning to deal with the speed of Spanish is a problem.

That’s why I created the Spanish Ear Training program… to take on this challenge – head on.

This program is going to be very important to the lives of many people, especially those living in Spanish speaking countries.

Here’s how each of the sections gives your Spanish a natural flow:

Your Synergy Spanish Course Modules:

Every month members receive a 7-Step Ear building Program.

We pull apart and put back together an audio of typical fast paced Spanish speech. Each of the 7 steps will strengthen your ear, broaden your vocabulary and enhance your understanding of how Spanish is really spoken by native speakers.

This is about as far from dry textbook Spanish as you can get. Fresh material every month will expose you to the real living language as it’s used today.

Steps 1-5 Ear Building Program

Expand your listening and understanding skills, so you can learn to keep up with rapid fire Spanish.

Step 4 is of particular interest to anyone spending a lot of time in a Spanish speaking country or with native Spanish speakers. It is called- how they speak.

In this step I explain very clearly how Spanish speakers use their language in ways that could easily cause you to misunderstand them… That is, until the subtleties are pointed out to you. Once you know them your overall understanding of natural Spanish improves.

Step 6 – Spanish up close

This step is speaking practice and teaches you to use Spanish collocations, expressions and idioms for more authentic communication. Your Spanish will sounds more natural and you’ll bond more with your Spanish speaking amigos because you’ll start using their language the way they do.

Step 7 – Variations on a theme

Also a speaking step that makes complex Spanish structures easier to understand and use. That way, not only will you understand more of what you hear, you’ll also speak with more clarity, confidence and


Steps 1-7 are audio lessons. However they come with complete transcripts if you like to see the written word.

Printable Flashcards

Each month has a pre-learning module. It’s quite a simple idea, before you can understand rapid Spanish you need to know the words. In the pre-learning module I give you a selection of tools to help you expand your Spanish vocabulary. They include printable flashcards, word lists and audio flashcards.

By the way, in this step you don’t just learn individual words. You’ll learn collocations, expressions and phrases that are tricky for most people. They’ll be a breeze for you once I show you what they are really saying.

Audio Flashcards

Again this is a simple idea, but a big help for many. It’s fun too, like a game. You try to say the meaning before you hear the answer.

Got the new words down? Great! Now let’s turn up the heat a little. This time you’ll hear the English first and try to say the Spanish before you hear the answer.

This simple idea preps you to handle Spanish at the speed it’s realy spoken.

The audio, printable cards and transcripts are all fully downloadable and portable so you can learn Spanish when you exercise, when you commute or anywhere you enjoy learning Spanish.

That’s not all that there is in Spanish Ear Training.

Also included monthly Master Classes to overcome the comprehension killers

This is probably worth the price of admission by itself.

You’ll learn to overcome comprehension killers that shut down your understanding of spoken Spanish. Find out how you can rapidly strengthen this gaping hole in your Spanish comprehension.

And while you’re expanding your understanding you’ll speak even better Spanish.

Each Master Class gets you speaking Spanish more naturally, fluidly and closer to the way native speakers really use their language.

Together the Ear Strengthening Lessons and Master Classes make a powerful ear expanding package. If your Spanish has hit a plateau, this is what you need to rejuvenate your enthusiasm.

Who Should Join Spanish Ear Training?

Firstly, if you’re interest in Spanish is only fleeting. If you think they should speak English, even when you’re in their country,
this program isn’t for you.

If you still think you can’t learn Spanish after everything I have told you to prove to you that the problem is not you, but rather you’re approach, and you have given up any hope of ever learning Spanish… then this program is not for you.

If you can’t yet hold a basic conversation, you’d be better off building a strong foundation first before taking Ear Training. My starter level program, Synergy Spanish, will teach you to get by in Spanish very quickly.

On the other hand…

If, like many of my students you’ve decided to relocate to Spain or Latin America and you want to communicate and move freely in your new home, don’t read anymore, just go and sign up now. It’ll make such a big impact in your life that you can’t afford to miss out on it. You really need this program; it’ll make your life more fulfilling, and may even save your life one day.

If you have Spanish speaking friends or relatives, if you live in a community with a lot of Latinos, you won’t feel so left out or feel like you’re a step behind everyone. This program will make you feel like an insider and a much better communicator.

If you work with, or provide service to, Spanish speakers this program may well be the missing link you’ve been looking for to really bond with your workmates and enhance the lives of your customers.

How much is it to become a member of Spanish Ear Training?

Membership in Spanish Ear Training is $29.95 per month; there is no obligation on your part to stay a member. If you ever want to leave, you simply send an email asking to be unsubscribed. In fact, I am so sure that you’ll love it that if you’re not delighted with the first two months, let me know within 60 days, and I’ll refund your payments in full.

Ready to get started? Just click this button to claim your position in the Spanish Ear Training Coaching Program

Join Spanish Ear Training Now

Spanish ear Training may become unavailable at any time. Why?

I work very hard to make sure the lessons flow smoothly for you. In fact, you may never need to use my support system. However it’s there if you need it. All you do is click and leave a ticket anytime to ask about anything that is confusing you.

To make sure I can answer your questions, and that I continue enjoying helping you, I will close Spanish Ear Training if it becomes too busy for me.

What People Say about Marcus and Synergy Spanish


“My Mexican friends are more than impressed with my progress in a little over a month!”

“Synergy Spanish was absolutely excellent. It was easy to follow and the learning just flowed naturally. My Mexican friends are more than impressed with my progress in a little over a month!”

-Neil Ellson, USA


“It is so easy to practice and learn Spanish”

“In a few words, Synergy Spanish is excellent. I like very much the CDs of this program because it is so easy to practice and learn Spanish”

-Edmund R. Donoghue,
Chicago, Illinois



“I learned a lot of Spanish from your course; more than all my past classes”

“I would like to say thanks for writing the course “Synergy Spanish”. I learned a lot of Spanish from your course; more than all my past classes.”

-Craig Dow


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Learn Just a Handful of Words
and Enhance Your Travel Experiences

“Our experience was due in large part to being able to communicate in Spanish”

synergy-spanish4My wife and I belong to Friendship Force International, which is an organization that sponsors home hosting. Late last year our club arranged to visit two clubs in Chiapas, Mexico (Tuxtla-Gutierrez and Comitan).

I thought that since Chiapas is so far south and off the tourist paths that I would enjoy the experience more if I knew a little Spanish when we stayed in our host’s homes. I went to the Internet and searched for courses. Yours caught my eye and I ordered your Synergy Spanish with the 14 Cd’s. I started my studies right after the first of the year, and we left for Chiapas March 12th.

Muchisimas Gracias!! I was able to communicate with our first family that spoke very little English. The Chiapas area is wonderful!! The people are great, the food was delicious, the drinks flowed freely, the music and dancing went on as long as you could stand. Those two weeks were the best vacation I can remember taking!

I could go on for several pages about our experience but it was due in large part to being able to communicate in Spanish. I am 69 years old, and if I can do it, anyone should be able to experience the thrill of speaking another language.

I particularly want to thank Elena for her work on the Cd’s. Her slow pace and clear pronuciation of every word made learning that much more achievable.

Keep up the good work and I will be ordering new courses as they become available.

Bill Worthley
Fort Worth, TX

“I can now communicate with the Spanish folk in the town in Orihuela Costa”

I have over the last 3 years
attended 3 night school classes to learn this beautiful language. After which I still couldn’t string a
sentence together. I am amazed at how simple you have made this and I can now communicate with the Spanish folk in the town in Orihuela Costa where I am planning to spend my retirement.

Jan Woodhouse
Middlesex, UK

“It’s made an enormous difference in my ability to communicate to the parents of my students”

jamie-robertsDear Sr. Santamaria, I am just on the third CD of Synergy Spanish, but it’s made an enormous difference in my ability to communicate to the parents of my students, many of whom don’t speak English. Your teaching methods are extraordinarily effective, and I’ve tried many of them.

Con respeto,
Jamie Roberts
Philadelphia, PA

“It is making a big difference to our confidence in talking to people in our adopted country”

steve-mairI have been very pleased with the progress I’ve made using Synergy Spanish. We are English ex-pats who moved to Spain, and have been trying to learn the language, seriously, for 4 years. However, in our 60’s learning a new language has been daunting. But we are making real progress now, thanks to your course.

Thanks for Synergy Spanish which really is making a big difference to our confidence in talking to people in our adopted country.

Steve and Mair Harper

“Now, I can speak with my five new children. Thanks for helping us!”

renee-and-scottThank you so much for creating this program. My husband and I are adopting five children from Guatemala and really needed a quick way to learn Spanish. Your lessons have been a godsend!

Other programs we have tried just haven’t clicked. Your method runs circles around all the others we have attempted!
Thanks again.
Ahora, puedo hablar con mi cinco nuevos ninos! Gracias por ayudarnos! (now, I can speak with my five new children. Thanks for helping us!)
Renee and Scott Dean
Georgia, USA

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