Missing the summer? Yes, we know summer is over and you miss it. Us, too. But it’s time to lose your autumn blues and see that it’s actually the perfect time to set a new goal. Are you planning to start learning a new language and don’t know where to start? We have been in your shoes before, so we can help you… keep reading!
Here are 4 ways to achieve your new goal and embrace the learning of a second language.
1. Motivation Motivation is a big part of the language learning process and different people are motivated in different ways. There could be many: like learning about a specific country, the history behind that language, the culture, the amount of people in the world that speak it, maybe someone new that you have met… You have to choose your own! Another key factor in maintaining a high level of motivation is keeping your language learning exciting and of course, keeping in mind how great languages can be:
- They help your memory. - They make you and your CV stand out from the crowd when applying for jobs. - Languages enable you to travel all over the world and meet some really amazing people!
2. Starting date It is said that people are more motivated to pursue their goals on specific days that feel more meaningful, a phenomenon called "the fresh start effect.” Those special days include: Monday (#MotivationMonday), a birthday, a holiday, the first day of spring, and the first day of a new financial quarter. Now that you know these little tips, avoid procrastination and take action! Open your diary and pick the date. It seems obvious but this is what most of us struggle with. Take a note of that day, write it on your phone and tell your family and friends...you are half way there!
3. Finding your learning technique Now the starting date is set, find your favourite learning style and plan your progress. How many days and hours per week are you going to dedicate to the new language? Every lifestyle is different but it’s important that you have a schedule. This not only helps with going into a comfortable study pattern, but actually boosts your productivity! To make the learning process engaging and exciting, you should also identify your preferred learning styles. The most important thing is not to follow ‘trendy’ learning strategies but ones that work for you.
When trying to achieve something big, it is better to start small as it improves your chances of success. Break it down into the smallest, most realistic steps and only do one at a time. Although this seems simple, lack of dedication is probably the main reason that motivation starts to drop when you’re learning independently. Also, people who write down their mini-goals daily are more likely to achieve them. It’s useful to share your goals with your relatives or friends as knowing that you need to report to someone makes you feel like you don’t want to disappoint them.
4. Investing in yourself If you do decide to take your language learning further, consider investing in small group or one-to-one tuition. When you hire a language teacher, the money you spend should buy you unrivalled personal attention. The accountability that comes with lessons creates a boost of ongoing motivation that is almost impossible to find for free.
Once you get started, it’s easy to get past the idea that studying a foreign language comes with a big financial burden. Remember to take your time and think of your new language as something you will be learning for life, not just for the next six months. There is only one way to fail at language learning, and that is to stop completely.
Now it’s over to you... Remember, the only thing holding you back from achieving your language learning dreams, is you. Are there any tips you personally use to stay motivated in your studies? Please share them in the comments.