Learning a foreign language can be one of the most difficult and stressful things anyone can go through. You will have to learn new ways of pronouncing letters and producing the right sounds that the words make. Of course, you will also have to remember the meaning of each new word that you will learn.
Certain mistakes will also make the whole learning process go harder. What are the top mistakes that can cause you to have a harder time learning a new language? Read them below:
Trying to memorize all the grammar rules.
Grammar is important in any language. However, regardless of the language, grammar will always be tricky for non-native speakers. Using the right tenses, gerunds, infinitives, etc. are useful if you will be writing academic essays or professional emails. But if your main objective is to communicate in preparation for a trip abroad or to master just the basics, don’t stress about this too much. You’ll always just feel anxious every time you buckle down to study.
Being afraid of committing mistakes.
There’s no way anyone who is learning a new language will be able to avoid making mistakes. Errors are simply part of language study. However, one of the biggest mistakes any student can make is not trying out of fear of failure. Don’t be afraid to speak the new language, even in public: any error you make only go to show what you could work more on. Consider each mistake as a positive step toward your learning goals.
Over-thinking the rules.
Native language speakers don’t have to think much while they are speaking since the language becomes almost an instinctual response and even a feeling. Rules are essential for speaking properly, but you shouldn’t treat the language experience like a mathematical formula that you need to memorize so that you can always give the right answers. Linguists say you should always speak with your gut whenever possible and keep grammatical rules in mind but don’t rely on sorting through them every time you use the language.
Losing the drive to learn.
Lastly, a lot of students get excited about learning a new language and have their greatest burst of momentum at the very beginning. This sense of excitement, which usually accompanies the start of the language learning process, should certainly be embraced. However, students may have a hard time maintaining this momentum, especially after the initial months of classes. Linguists say a useful tip would be to focus on what you like: study subjects that apply to more to your interests. If you like food, learn more vocabulary related to gastronomy. Watch a film or go to a cultural fair every now and then to remind yourself why you started learning the language in the first place as well.