Your next English lesson is this afternoon. You have been carrying around your book for days but haven’t even opened it yet. There are some grammar exercises to do and an article to read. It is so embarrassing.
You will not remember the words – again. And you pay for these lessons. At least you should prepare. You feel guilty. And frightened if you think about the English presentation at your workplace next week. But you had the family visit on Sunday. And your partner. And you had to clean the flat and this is the same every week. The to do list is always just too long. How could you learn English? What to do then???
Is this situation familiar to you? Probably, as it is for the vast majority of language learners. You are not an exception.
photo credit: Atomische • Tom Giebel via photo pin cc
There are two main factors needed to make progress and learn English. The first one is motivation. If you do not feel motivated to put energy into the process and do not feel how much you will benefit from language skills, you are not likely to stick to your goals.
Giving up or having a long break is always an easy solution even if not a good one long term. So, forget that. The other factor is time. Very few people have enough. So let’s see how you can squeeze the most into the limited time available.
I would like to provide you with some practical advice and tips I have collected.
First of all, don’t expect that it will be better. Never. You will never have more time. So don’t postpone the lesson, the course. Do it. Start today and don’t give up.
Continuity is essential. Don’t have breaks. It will be just more difficult to restart after you have forgotten so many things.
Deal with the language every day. An hour, half an hour or just 10 minutes. It is much better than one day a week only. Being exposed to the language on a daily basis is crucial.
Integrate learning English into the daily routine. Technology helps a lot nowadays. Put some listening materials on your mobile or some other device you carry with you. Listen when you travel. On the bus or in the car. It helps a lot. Repeat the sentences you hear. They will get stuck in your mind and it will be easy to use them later in conversation.
There are also very good dictionaries and other language learning applications for smart phones. Learn words on your way to work and home. Learn 10 words every day or more.
And don’t forget to revise. Many people would like to rush their studies and their goal is to finish a book as soon as possible. However, they do not know the material. Instead, do not hurry. Revise. Regular revision is absolutely necessary.
Read the news in English. Why in your language? No point in it. You just lose valuable time you could spend reading English.
Read your favourite books and magazines in English.
Get a job at a company where the official language is English. Scary first but really beneficial long term.
Write emails in English. Use English when you write to your friends. More fun and good practice.
Whatever you do, the main point is to do it REGULARLY. Every day if it is possible. This way English will be part of your life and this is obviously what you want.
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