It's commonly accepted that children are fast language learners. However, it doesn't necessarily mean, being an adult you should refuse the idea of learning some new language from scratch. Being a grown up in most cases you know what you require a new foreign language for and your motivation is fairly strong.

But be honest, no matter how old you are, it's extremely difficult to fulfill some tasks when you have no idea how to do it. It's always easier to travel with a roadmap and certain guidance, the same works for learning. As soon as you've decided to start, find some polyglots or experienced learners who are already the mapmakers of the linguistic field. Use the collective experience in mastering a new language, add some methodical know-hows and create your own route to the new world.

We've prepared the eight essential tips for you to make your learning journey easier.

1. Ensure you like the language you've chosen :

It's no use to marry a dialect expecting to love it one day. Being a grown-up, you may dislike one dialect or another simply because it sounds bad to you.

In such a case it will be problematic to compromise and transform your attitude you feel uncomfortable with. A shock therapy can be used - to listen to the people speaking it until you get used to the way it sounds. Only after that, you may try to master it and succeed faster.

2. Become a coach for yourself set goals and work out strategies :

Remember that vague goals are difficult to reach, you should apply the SMART goals technique to the process of your learning. Change "I aim to be able to read women magazines", for "I will learn 15 words and phrases daily and train grammar rules for an hour and a half every day to read an X book in half a year. You can also use metacognitive strategies.

In this case, it involves 3 basic steps: planning and setting specific goals, as well as strategies for achieving them, learning and tracking of your progress, evaluation of your results in a certain period of time, finding out the reasons for the failures if there are any. Then repeat the whole procedure all over again.

3. Make use of the books :

Find some kind of a course book, a course online or some language learning guide to follow it at the initial stage. Learn some vocabulary and then start adding grammar to it. Don't worry about grammar too much. Theory tables are not worth a dime when you do not practice your speaking skills.

4. Practice reading, writing, watching and listening in the target language :

Comprise all the common activities like in your Mothertongue and practice them. Make your best to avoid using dictionaries and subtitles, but grasp the words and expressions meaning from the context.

To make the task easier, watch the films and TV shows you are used to and read the books you are familiar with the plots of. Practice reading magazines and newspapers as well and practice writing, no matter if it is a list of products for shopping or notes on the article, it will be useful anyway.

Listen! Listening not only allows you to study on the go but lets you hear the correct articulation and intonation of the everyday words and common phrases.

5. Allow technology help you :

The simplest thing is to change the settings of the language on your gadgets and mobile devices, you'll learn the new words right away. You can do the same with your browser settings as well. Besides, there are plenty of structured online learning opportunities now, from vocabulary flashcards to audiobooks and educational shows and courses.

6. Make friends with native speakers :

The best way to master a language is to speak it, and communication to a live individual is the best way to practice. There are multiple online forums and sites to find not only a friend speaking the required language, but a skype friend to tutor you.

Foreigners are in most cases eager to exchange half an hour of speaking in their native tongue for half an hour speaking in another language. Interacting is a key - in live communication you learn to express your thoughts intuitively, not to translate each phrase before speaking.

7. Do not worry about mistakes :

Lots of people don't speak foreign languages, because they are just afraid to start and open their mouth. But native speakers never expect you to communicate with them the same way they do it. They always appreciate your effort and do their best to help you. You can choose somebody younger than you to start communication if you are in fear of speaking to your peers, with practice you get to the elusive ideal of "native-like fluency".

8. Visit the country your language is spoken in :

It will boost your language skills to a new level, interact with the locals and use every chance of pushing yourself into the conversation, soon you'll notice that all your language skills have improved.

One more thing we'd like to remind you is to enjoy yourself and the process, language is the thing connecting people and we can enjoy many social rewards through it. Make sure that you use it for what it is intended, for socializing.

Obviously, there is really no much of a secret how to master a foreign language. You just need to commit to it, be eager to work hard and overcome the fear of mistakes. Here are some guidelines, nevertheless, the road is made with a first step, so start and take this initial step!

Published by Arina Smith