Time Slips By Very Quickly When Trying To Learn Spanish

So it is nearly 11.00pm as I write this and I have still to do my pronunciation training and my minimal pairs work on Anki.

It has been left until the end of the day when there were many opportunities for me to have done it throughout the day.

But that’s the way it is.

What this does open up though is the issue around fitting everything in.

Today I have spent some time thinking about how I can practice Spanish with native speakers and what I can do about setting that up. Of course my system head has gone into overdrive and I am looking at this as a plan:

Finding Native Spanish Speakers

It seems to make sense that I put some effort in ahead of time before I actually dive in and start speaking or at least attempting to speak to a native.   That means I can take advantage of and learn from every opportunity that arises.

This is the approach that Benny Lewis takes in his Fluent in 3 Months system.

But at the moment I don’t think I have much to converse with.

All sorts of ideas for topics washed around my head.  These include working with numbers and playing around with them; the obvious family and work conversations, as well as things around colours and food.

I think I can create something that will really help me focus and get the most out of the time.

But here’s a warning to myself.  I will have to be careful that I don’t over process the shit out of this and lose the spontaneity of a genuine conversation.

However, this is very exciting.

If I can talk to a native speaker at least 2-3 times a week, then I will certainly be well ahead.

There Is A Lot To Do

There does seem a lot to do and a lot to take in.   It can be quite easy to get extremely overwhelmed.

When that happens, the negative self talk starts to kick in and my goal seems impossible against seemingly insurmountable odds.

I had a skim of Benny Lewis’s book and he talked about the concept of having learning missions.

This is very similar to a train of thought I was having about creating a serious of learning mini-projects to work.  There are a number of advantages to doing this.

First of all the project creates a boundary to the effort which will allow me to focus more.

And secondly if it is clearly defined, I will have a good sense of when it is achieved.

I am starting to realise that a significant effort applied to creating the skills and habits to learn is a real strength to help create the right approach to learning Spanish.

Finding the keystone habit to get things started I think is vital.

At the moment that is using Anki to get to grips with the pronunciation and the minimal pairs.

I had started with using Duolingo but I quickly came to realise that I was experiencing the language and not necessarily actually learning it.

Learning to speak and converse requires a different level of effort.  I need to be more focused, more determined, more concentrated and far better organised.

I think that is what I am starting to fully understand.

The romantic image of being able to become fluent in 3 months is perhaps more of a marketing angle than reality?  If it is possible in 3 months, it is because of a HUGE amount off effort in that time.




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