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Views #1341 | Intermediate (B2)

E-Mail Habits

Paul and Aimee compare how often they check and respond to e-mails.

Paul: So Aimee, do you always check your emails in the morning?

Aimee: Probably. Probably. Recently, I’m trying to stop using my electronic devices so much. So I think in the morning, I need to do other things but very often, I will quickly scan my phone and check because my phone is also my alarm clock, so it’s right there. It’s too handy.

Paul: Yeah. I’m always one that wake up—I don’t know, I’ve got this really bad habit where I think something major has happened during the night. And so I wake up and I’m checking different websites and checking Facebook to see if there’s any messages or any great news over the course of the night.

Yeah, it’s a really bad habit, you know. It starts to kind of dominate your life. Yeah, I think it’s quite addictive things, isn’t it?

Aimee: Yeah. I’ve been thinking about it a lot recently. And it’s something I think that doesn’t need to be in the morning routine so much. It’s good to just get your head ready before you—your head and your body ready before you start thinking about checking emails and stuff.

Paul: I agree. I heard somebody—there was a piece of advice, I can’t remember where I heard it from. But it was just to check your emails twice a day. You know, you don’t need to do more than that. Check once in the morning, once in the evening, that’s it. Check your news websites, maybe twice a day rather than every 30 minutes or something.

Aimee: Yeah, that’s—

Paul: Yeah. I think it requires discipline doesn’t it?

Aimee: It does.

Paul: Yeah.

Aimee: It’s good advice but I don’t know if it’s very practical because if you’re using a smartphone, which I do, then you’re using it first, it’s got so many different function and you need it for—need it, I guess is a loose term. But you use it for so many different things. So it’s always there, you know. Always there.

However, I did start reading a book the other day, so I’m trying to stop looking at my phone and start reading a book instead.

Paul: Oh, good for you. Yeah.

Aimee: Thanks.

Paul: That’s good move. Yeah, I should perhaps do that myself.

Answer these questions about the interview.
Audio Lessons about Phrases and Vocabulary



I will quickly scan my phone and check.

Scan means to read something quickly to find information. Notice the following:

  1. He scanned the paper for the answer.
  2. He scanned the list for his name.



It is too handy.

Handy means convenient. Notice the following:

  1. It is handy to live downtown.
  2. This tool is really handy.

bad habit


I’ve got this really bad habit.

A bad habit is something you do often that you should not do. Notice the following:

  1. Chewing your nails is a bad habit.
  2. I have a bad habit of always arriving late.




dominate your life


It starts to kind of dominate your life here.

If something dominates your life, it takes up a lot of your time or energy. Notice the following:

  1. My new job dominates my life.
  2. A newborn baby will dominate your life.

a piece of advice


Here's a piece of advice.

A piece of advice just means some advice. Notice the following:

  1. He gave me a piece of advice.
  2. That is a great piece of advice.

loose term


'Need it' is a loose term.

A loose term is a word or phrase that is not used accurately. Notice the following:

  1. I play sports, but to say I am an athlete is a loose term.
  2. The term 'crisis' has become a loose term.

Vocabulary Quiz

advice • habit • handy
dominate • scan • loose term
  1. My job is starting to my life.
  2. She gave me a good piece of .
  3. Taking notes in class is a good .
  4. Nerd is a for being smart.
  5. Do you like to Facebook for updates?
  6. What is a app you like to us?

Related Lessons

1342 Unplugged
#1342 Unplugged
Aimee talks about digital habits.
Video 1342
Can you go with no phone?
Video 1341
How often do you check email?

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1345 The Weekend
#1345 The Weekend
Shirley talks about her weekend.
1344 The Gilded Cage
#1344 The Gilded Cage
Ana shares a movie about being Portuguese.
1343 Dallas Buyers Club
#1343 Dallas Buyers Club
Michael talks about a serious topic.


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Hello, and welcome to elllo. My name is Todd Beuckens. I've been an ESL teacher for 25 years. I created elllo to provide teachers and students free audio lessons and learning materials not usually found in commercial textbooks.
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