Building Resilience: It’s Not as Difficult as You Think
Learning a new language is a wonderful experience. The benefits of speaking another language are very well known. However, things aren’t always rosy when you start learning something new. It can be exhausting, demanding and challenging. However, if you stick to your ground and keep to your goals, learning a new language can be one of the most rewarding things that you do in life.
One of the key factors in succeeding is resilience.
How well can you fight off all those negative thoughts and move past setbacks? How can you keep your eye on the ball and continue moving forward?
When you think about it, building resilience isn’t as difficult as we make it out to be.
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1. Why are you learning a new language?
Before you even start learning a new language, you need to ask yourself why you’ve started on this journey. Is it just for fun? Is it to acquire a new job? Or, are you planning to travel for work or study? Once you understand your reasons, it will be easier to define and align your actions to your end goal. To start, ask yourself what benefits learning a language will bring you. How is it going to change your life or add new opportunities?
2. Write down what demotivates you
Awareness is a magical thing. Sometimes, understanding the real blocker does wonders at breaking it down. Think about what’s stopping you from opening a book or from signing up for a language class. Write down all of the things that are demotivating you to learn a new language. Is it a lack of time? Are you afraid that you’ll take attention away from your kids? Are you afraid that you won’t succeed? When you write these barriers down on paper, they seem less overwhelming. Instead, they turn into manageable obstacles than can be overcome with a little positivity and an efficient organisation of your time.
3. Look at ‘failure’ differently
It’s so easy to get frustrated when we feel that things aren’t moving as fast as we hoped. We have a tendency of taking setbacks as signs that we’re not capable. But, the perception of failure is an essential part of growth! It’s important to remind ourselves sometimes of things that are seemingly so obvious. Think of how many times a baby falls before making that first step? So, where is all that pressure coming from that makes you think you have to succeed straight away? Baby steps. You’ll get there.
4. Meet people learning the same language
Spending time with other people who are learning the same language can alleviate some pressure. Most likely, they’re going through similar challenges. Laugh with them about your mistakes, talk about your problems and find new learning tactics together. A language class is a great way to avoid going through these challenges alone. Attending a weekly language course keeps your eye on the prize and gives you that external support that we all need at various moments in life.
5. Set realistic goals
It is vital to keep your goals realistic. It’s highly unlikely for a person to become perfectly fluent in a language in just couple of months. In fact, it takes hours of study to really master the skill. Like with anything you do! Set smaller objectives – keep them realistic. You know yourself and your potential more than anyone else. Set some feasible deadlines and readjust your goals along the way.
6. Reward yourself
Pavlov taught us one of the cornerstones of psychology. Rewards help condition our minds to perform desired actions. Setting success milestones and then establishing reasonable rewards for reaching them is a fantastic way to stay motivated and build resilience when things get tough. Rewards remind us to focus on what we’ve achieved and not just focus on what we’ve still to accomplish. Can you finally understand your teacher when she asks you to open your book? Are you finally saying ‘I bought’ instead of ‘I buyed’? Celebrate that! And, then focus on the next mini-goal!
How do you stay resilient and keep pushing through the toughest moments?