There are many folks who have been discouraged after years of trying to study a new language without much success. While some find it hard to study languages, it is rare that their actual ability to learn a language is in question. In general, many people have been discouraged from learning another language after they failed to master a language they selected to study in school. However, learning a new language requires a lot of patience.
There are languages that are certainly easier for some to learn and those that prove more challenging. Whatever the case, it is an incorrect assumption to think a given language is impossible to learn. If people are speaking the language, it is because they managed to learn it somehow. Most people, with a little bit of effort, will be able to speak a new language, although very few will do so without an accent. However, the important thing here is to be able to express yourself fluently, and endeavor to be understood by a local despite your inevitable accent.
Why should you learn a new language?
By learning another language, you open yourself to a world of opportunities, friends, and experiences. Imagine the number of books you could read and movies you could watch without having to need any translation. Businesses are constantly expanding to different countries that may necessitate the use of another language. By having knowledge of such a language, you give yourself a competitive edge over other candidates if you are applying for a job. As a professional in your field of study, you may be called to travel to other countries where you will be expected to interact conveniently with the locals. A good grasp of the local language is definitely going to be a plus.
When moving into a new country, you stand a better chance of being accepted by the locals if you can communicate in their language. People are prone to warm up when they find that a stranger has taken the time to learn their language. At worst, visible effort to try to learn while you’re there is key.
Therefore, when considering learning a second language, also think of your reasons for learning a language. The reasons for learning a new language will guide the choice which to begin study. If it is for travel, first of all think of the countries you’d love to travel to. If it is for business, the language of your business partners, or other locations where the company is located, will definitely be preferred.
When to start learning
Interestingly, it is never too late or early to learn a new language. It is true that starting early will help allow time to become fluent in record time. However, even if you could not start learning while you were young, now is the right time to start. Obviously, it doesn’t happen overnight, but you can be sure with time, you will become more fluent.
Admittedly, the ease with which you learn a new language will be greatly influenced by your native language. Some languages have similar roots, and people who can speak either language are more likely to learn faster than those speaking an unrelated language.
The table below attempts to compare the ease with which a person speaking a particular language can learn another language.
|Language||Native English||Native French||Native Spanish||Native Italian||Native Chinese||Native Japanese||Native Korean|
|English||X||Moderate||Fairly Easy||Moderate||Difficult||Difficult||Very Difficult|
|French||Moderate||X||Fairly Easy||Fairly Easy||Difficult||Difficult||Very Difficult|
|Spanish||Fairly Easy||Easy||X||Easy||Difficult||Difficult||Very Difficult|
There are a lot of resources available for all those hoping to learn a new language. Thanks to the internet, learning has been made far easier, with many courses on demand and a host of online resources. There’s an interesting series of free e-books that you might love, it’s called “How to learn any language fast”. These guides will help you adjusting in your language learning journey. You can download it here for free below. In it, you’ll find helpful tips to ease the learning experience to ensure you maximize the acquisition of your chosen language, within the shortest possible time.