You may have said to yourself many times: “how can I improve my Spanish?”. And perhaps you have tried numerous systems and methods… and you feel that there has been almost no progress.
In my opinion, learning a foreign language is not an easy task. It takes tons of patience and dedication, and sometimes a bit of frustration as well. Also, most importantly, is a lifetime commitment.
Well, that may sound a bit exaggerated, but what I really mean is that there will always be new words and expressions to learn, and some grammar possibly. To me this means that you will always be learning that foreign language.
When I lived in the USA, every time I thought I controlled the language there was a new experience to prove the opposite. Maybe it was somebody from a different state (speaking with an accent I did not understand well) or some new expressions; always something.
In addition, as you probably already know (if not read this about me) I started doing translations and helping people from all over the UK and Ireland back in 2010. At that point I had been speaking English for 10 years, but had no experience with so many accents from the UK and Ireland. Yep, that meant: you know nothing man!
The following list is a set of personal advises for those who know some Spanish or even complete beginners. Honestly, I truly enjoyed writing this list
6 TIPS TO IMPROVE MY SPANISH
1. Be willing to improve your Spanish. Yeah, this sounds very obvious, but you don’t know how many times I’ve heard sentences as “I would like to learn Spanish but…”. No “buts”. Change your internal conversations and say: “I’m going to learn Spanish”. Positive. Determined. That’s the attitude.
2. Move to Spain. OK, you may not have the opportunity to move here now, but I’m sure that if you keep thinking on it you will figure out how to do it. There are plenty of opportunities everywhere. While you find one to move to Spain, jump please to the next section.
3. Spend some time in Spain on holidays. This might be the start point. I encourage you to do the following: take a Spanish course in your home town. Take one semester, or even a full year Spanish course. Watch videos on the internet and hire some Spanish TV channels if you can. Put everything into practice on a daily basis. And then come to Spain to spend a few weeks, or as much time as you can, on holidays. Warning: be focused on practising your Spanish while you’re here. Many people will try to use their broken English to practice it with you.
4. Marry a Spanish woman/man. I know, one does not pick up people to marry them as you grab oranges in the supermarket, but if you meet and date a Spanish-speaking native, I promise you will take off in a while!
5. Build relationships with Spanish people. The good thing about today’s world is that you don’t really need to be physically in Spain to get the first contact with the country. You can start with a blog. If you are already running a blog, or a Website, look for other Spanish blogs of Websites that have the same subject and propose them some business friendship or collaborations. We are friendly people. I don’t think you will get lots of denials.
6. READ IN SPANISH. Yes, capital letters. To me, reading is the key. Don’t expect tremendous changes if you don’t read, probably, in any discipline that you’re interested in. I remember some people in the US from other nationalities who have been living there for ages and spoke English really badly. Why? They have not really gone any deeper into the language. They understand very well but they were still stuck in their first year of English. Just read everyday a little bit in Spanish, one hour if you can. But it must be every day. Consistently. Remember, somebody said: “Dripping water hollows out stone, not through force but through persistence”.
This is roughly some advice I give you. So, from now on, no more “how can I improve my Spanish?”. Here you got the starting point. There are many more things that you could do as well, but this advice will basically cover the four skills required to learn a language in an efficient way: reading, writing, listening and speaking.
As always, I will share with you the second part of this article as soon as I finish it. In the meantime, I think these 6 proposals will be a good starting point to improve your Spanish 😉
Are there any other tips you would like to include? Please leave your comments down below.
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