Today I want to chat about something I hear all the time, which honestly makes no sense:
“I’m going to stop taking classes for a while because I don’t have much time outside of class to dedicate to my Spanish.” If anything, this is when you really need to be taking classes.
So here’s the deal. The best thing you can do when you’re learning a language, is to dedicate as much time to it as possible. Ideally you are going to class 1-2 x a week + work on your Spanish outside of class for 15+ minutes per day. This is ideal, but not everyone has that kind of time or dedication. So what do you do? You do the best that you can and you accept the outcome.
I started studying Italian about 2 months ago. I have been wanting to do so for 5+ years now, but never jumped in because I am the busiest person I know. Every year I decided that “next year, when I have more time…” I would get started. Now I look back and think that if I had started 5 years ago, I would be at an intermediate level by now. But I didn’t start because I couldn’t dedicate much time to it. This year I finally came to my senses and realized that even if I move at a snail’s pace, I’d rather inch forward than be at a complete stand still. Some weeks I am able to practice daily with either Octavi, my Italian grammar book, my writing exercises, DuoLingo, Busuu, News in Slow Italian, etc. Other weeks I do nothing outside of class. Zero. BUT, my class is a priority. As long as I am maintaining or moving forward, I’m happy. Going backwards and losing what I have learned seems silly to me.
So the next time you’re thinking about not doing ANYTHING because you can’t give EVERYTHING, remember that this is not a race; maintaining and moving forward is 100% better than going backwards.