This year's resolution: Learn English.
We all know that when New Year's Eve arrives, we have an important mission to do that requires a lot of concentration and imagination, and that is to make a "New Year's resolution list".
It is not just any list, as what we write on it will affect the next twelve months of our lives, so be careful what we put on it because it will be recorded there forever. It seems that the letters that form the words that describe our resolutions are engraved and there is no way to erase them; at least in the mental format, on paper they can be erased, burnt or tortured until they disappear.
That said, let's move on to the moment of making the list. Choose a time of day when you can be calm, put on comfortable clothes and find a place in your house where you feel at ease. Arrange the table in such a way that you can create a relaxed and special atmosphere for the occasion and serve yourself a nice cup of tea, coffee, chocolate or whatever you feel like having.
Once the ritual is done, find a nice notebook or, since we are in the digital age, a laptop or any other device that can be used to make such a precious list and you can start writing down all the clichés that have been and still are there, such as quit smoking, exercise, eat healthy, meet more with family and friends.....
Of course, at the end of the list and in special letters, in capital letters, in italics and bold or with decorations on the side, you have to put the following resolution: THIS YEAR I WILL LEARN ENGLISH.
You are probably already stressing out, you feel something in your body, as if you don't even want to hear about it, you have a twitch in your eye again and you start to feel a slight dizziness. You hear a little voice saying: "No, please don't learn English". Don't worry, that's normal, learning English provokes all these reactions, the good thing is that we can overcome them, win over our subconscious and achieve our purpose.
Why should I learn English?
Because it brings us a lot of benefits. Speaking English gives us more options in the workplace, many university students need English because there are publications, articles... related to their studies that can only be found in this language, but above all, it allows us to communicate with people from other countries because it is the most used language at an international level. With English we can understand each other almost everywhere in the world, which is fantastic, not only when we travel but also when people from different parts of the world visit us.
Another benefit of learning English is being able to enjoy a film or series in its original version, as in this case, you can perceive certain nuances that are lost during the dubbing process. In addition, it is always interesting to be able to understand a song that we love, it is sure that the experience is more enriching.
If we go to the scientific field, learning another language makes changes in our brain and expands those areas that process information, which strengthens our ability to concentrate, improves our memory, boosts our intelligence and improves our command of language.
So it seems worthwhile to start learning English.
How can we learn English without dying in the attempt?
Well, basically, step by step and without being overwhelmed, and above all by having fun during the process. Moreover, we should not feel it as an obligation, even if the proposal arises precisely from the fact that we have set ourselves an objective that we have to achieve.
1. Make the most of everything you have within your reach.
Nowadays we have a wide range of academies, online platforms such as Lewolang, books, podcasts, videos... that can be very useful for learning English. Each of these options adds up and also complement each other, so everyone should choose what best suits their needs and, if possible, combine more than one.
2. Do we really have to plan?
Well, that depends on how each person works. The majority tend to follow these steps:
1) a good plan with the days you will study English, for how long, the grammar and vocabulary points you want to take on... Everything very clear and specified.
2) We get off to a good start and stick to our great plan.
3) The excuses start to come in, I can't do it today because I have something very important to do, I don't feel like it now, I'll do it later... In short, the reasons why we end up postponing our English homework are innumerable and range from the most clichéd to the most creative.
4) Our plan ends up dropping, because once you skip one of the activities on your plan there is a chain reaction that causes you to skip more and more until you don't even remember that you were trying to learn English.
So, unless you are one of those strong-willed people who stick to the letter of what they set out to do, I don't know if it's a good idea to make a plan, but you have to admit that the process of organising the plan is fun.
In fact, if we feel that learning English is an obligation and we associate it with having to make an effort, our objective will end up failing, which brings us to the next point.
3. Have fun.
Learning English should be a fun activity because it is the only way for our brains not to rebel when the "time to study" light comes on.
Make sure you have fun in the process - if you go to an English language school, you'll meet new people, interact with other students and if the teacher is friendly, have a good laugh.
If you decide to study at home, look for online options that are enjoyable but that make you feel like you are learning. Watch videos on topics that interest you, read books, magazines, articles, cooking recipes ...., that are your level, as this way you will do those activities because you enjoy them and not because you have to.
Find yourself a boyfriend or a girlfriend, that helps a lot, but if you don't want to go that far, nowadays you can contact native English speakers through apps and websites, so you can practice the language.
If you can have a good time while learning English, you won't need any kind of plan.
So you see, there is no excuse for not learning English, so get on with it.