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New Year, New Goals: Language Learning Tips To Keep You On Track This Year

The time is now! For many people, a new year typically means creating goals and resolutions for the upcoming year. There is no better time than now to add learning a new language to your New Year’s resolutions and we’re here to share why you should do so, along with some tips to help you kick off your learning experience!

1. Look ahead.

Set an ultimate goal to motivate you. For example, your goal could be to “reach a conversational level in Spanish by October.” Looking ahead gives you something to work towards and helps you create a timeline leading up to that goal.

2. Take it step-by-step.

Once you set the larger goal, create small, attainable monthly, weekly, and even daily goals. These could be anything from “learn 2 new vocab words a day” to “be able to read a short story”. Use a planner to map out your language learning journey. Like this one!

3. Mistakes are okay.

Learning is an ongoing process and making mistakes is inevitable. Don’t let these mistakes discourage you. Instead, write them down, recognize them, and learn from them as you move forward. Don’t be hard on yourself, it will all be worth it in the end!

4. Connect.

Embarking on any learning experience is always better when you’re not alone. Maybe you choose to learn a language with a family member or friend or maybe you use this as an opportunity to make a new friend with similar interests as you. You can work together and motivate one another to continue on the journey. To meet new language buddies, explore social media related to your target language. For example, follow our Portuguese vocabulary Instagram to learn new words each day and meet new people!

5. Be confident. Be patient.

Take your time and be confident in how far you’ve come and where you’re going.

6. The practice is key.

Practice can come in a variety of forms. You can use flashcards to practice new vocabulary words (like these!), listen to your new language while you do tasks around the house, speak with someone else (don’t have anyone?... talk to yourself in the mirror and see how your mouth moves to improve your pronunciation), record yourself speaking and listen to it, and so much more!

7. Share your progress.

Don’t be shy. Share what you’re learning with your family and friends. Taking time to share your learning experience with others will help you to further realize the success you’ve made so far.

8. Track and reward yourself.

It’s important to track the accomplishments and progress you’re making. Take this as an opportunity to reward yourself when you achieve your goals along the way. This will only motivate you to keep going!

9. Most importantly - don’t give up!

There is no doubt that learning a new language is hard but it will all be worth it in the end. Take it to step by step and recognize the many benefits that will come from the process. Remember that the goal is not perfection, but learning how to communicate and connect with others.

A new year means a fresh start and the chance to set goals and take on new challenges. Although resolutions can be daunting at times, don’t let fear keep you from embarking on a new journey. Learning a language provides so many benefits to your life and opens doors to new possibilities in the future. Increased cultural awareness, long-term cognitive benefits, a creative outlet, and potential career opportunities are just a few of the many benefits that come from learning a second language. For more motivation to learn a second language, check out our past post on the Rola blog. There’s no time like now to start your language learning journey. Set your goal and consider these tips to get started on your journey today!

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