Here are 7 tricks to learn languages dedicated to those who think that it is a Herculean task.
7 Tricks to Learn a Foreign Language
If you’re reading this article, you are probably among those who naively believe they are not at all inclined to learn foreign languages.
First, shake that anxiety off: not everyone has the same skills!
Having said that, surely you must have specific skills that can be very useful for this purpose?
When it comes to foreign languages, we must take into account different aspects: knowing how to read, write, converse, translate, or even just having enough vocabulary.
Certainly, you are well-versed in one of these things! It has been observed that some individuals have more developed language skills than others... and so far, nothing new! It is equally proven that we can all learn a second language easily. The secret is to focus on our strengths and work on what we consider to be our weaknesses!
You have a good memory when it comes to everyday life but can’t memorize a few foreign phrases? Something doesn’t add up, don’t you think?
In general, memory works best when we are dealing with topics that interest us. For example, if you are a football fan, you almost certainly have no problem remembering the formation of your favorite team. Likewise, if you like music, chances are you have memorized more than one song effortlessly. When it comes to learning grammar rules, irregular verbs or varied terminology, obviously, it's much easier to get lost.
So how can the problem be solved? It is simple: adapt your mnemonic capacity to the language and establish connections between the topics that interest you and the language you are learning! Obviously, memorizing the list of English "phrasal verbs" will not turn, as if by magic, into an easy task, but do not be discouraged: try to orientate your learning, always looking for a new motivation!
The pronunciation, at least at the beginning, is an aspect that isn't worth damning too much, that's for sure! However, always remember that the closer your pronunciation is to that of a native speaker, the easier it will be for others to understand you.
Try to avoid the typical mistakes of the foreigner. There are words that are really difficult to pronounce (like in German, a nightmare for many students), but this does not mean that there are no tricks to reproduce the distinctive sounds.
Look for techniques to speak the language you are learning well and take some time to listen to native speakers in action: the ancient Latin motto "repetita iuvant" ("repeated things help"), when it comes to learning a foreign language, remains one of the best tips you can receive and put into practice!
Talk, Talk, and Talk Again
Unfortunately, listening to and memorizing the structure of a foreign language is not enough to learn it.
The real point of the matter, in fact, is to become familiar with the sounds of the new language. Multilingual people seem to possess even more than one voice, have you ever noticed? This happens because, by learning a new language, our voice adapts to new sounds and tones. It acquires something similar to a new personality.
For example, foreigners who learn Italian find it useful to use music to get used to the peculiar "musicality" and make it their own! If your linguistic challenge concerns English or German instead, remember to "lower the volume": your words, in this way, will certainly sound much more natural.
Just as a professional custom writing service is versatile in the types of tasks its writers perform, you should be able to adapt your speech tones to the language you’re conversing in.
The point of the question remains one: talk! Staying at home watching videos and tutorials on the Internet will hardly help you have a smooth conversation. Strengthen yourself, loosen your tongue, and practice speaking!
Battle Your Fears
Just as there are people who are afraid of flying, of being alone, or speaking in public (even in their mother tongue), there are those who fall prey to another type of phobia: one of not speaking a foreign language in front of other people.
If you know what we’re referring to, then heed our advice: cast the shame aside and head for the unknown, dive into mistakes and unlikely combinations! Believe us when we tell you that amusing anecdotes and funny stories can only come from linguistic confusions and imaginative accents!
Everyone has committed and/or will commit your own mistakes in taking up the challenge of learning a foreign language, so it makes no sense to get demoralized.
Among other things, ALL of us make mistakes! All the time! Even the most experienced polyglots and native speakers make them (even if they are able to disguise them!). To err is human, and the only way to gradually eliminate all imperfections is to learn from them.
As they say, those who do not risk do nothing: only by risking making a mistake can we reach a goal!Broaden Your Horizons
Are you good at math, in the kitchen, or with manual jobs? The game is easy, then!
Try to understand why you are formidable in these fields and adapt your skills to the world of languages. If, for example, you are equipped with an analytical mind, take advantage of it and find a way to use it in studying a foreign language.
If, on the contrary, you feel you are creative, adapt and personalize your learning method: use colors, shapes and maybe small objects, thus developing your own style of study.
If it’s easier for you to use your senses, learn the vocabulary through sounds, smells, taste or any other useful means for your mind to be 100% receptive. Analyze the aspects of the language that you would like to learn!
H2: Reading: Focus on Understanding
Have you ever read a book, but upon turning the last page realized you didn’t understand a single thing? It’s like when you look at the clock to see the time, but you’re so distracted you have to check again immediately afterward.
When it comes to reading a text written in a foreign language, it is easy to tire quickly. At some point, you can even start feeling the temptation to use the dictionary for every word, check Facebook or Whatsapp notifications, or even stop reading altogether. It is extremely easy to get distracted and throw in the towel!
All this, however humanly understandable, is absolutely not good: if you are reading, you are reading. Period. The shopping list, the plan for an evening out with friends, or any other thought that is not directly related to reading must be put aside. If you believe you cannot isolate yourself for too long, do things little by little. It can even be just a small paragraph a day, as long as you can concentrate on it. No matter the theme! The horoscope is as good as the recipe for apple strudel... Every text is the right one when it comes to learning a language!
H2: Cheer Up!
Making haste makes waste, just as not establishing a timetable does! Set the objectives that you know are impossible from the start! As the saying goes, "everything in due time": every person or language has its own timing, and you can't argue with that! To lose all your progress, on the other hand, takes just a few skipped lessons. But the secret to avoiding such a bad outcome is to organize yourself well, so as to see the results emerge little by little!
And remember: speaking a language badly is the first step to speaking it well!