No Language Is Easy to Learn – and Why It’s Time to Stop Believing Otherwise

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Spanish is easy to learn.

French too. Oh and German as well.

Chinese is much, much easier than you think.

Russian? A breeze…

Yeah, I get it:

The authors of all those ¨Why language X is easier than you think¨ and the even bolder ¨Why language X is easy¨ blog posts probably want to encourage you to learn a language.

But:

All They Really Do Is Encourage You to Give up at the First Setback

From battling verb tenses to saying embarrassing things in public, learning any language is a struggle. And that’s great.

There’s a lot of value to be found in the struggle.

If it were easy, everybody would speak eight languages and brag about it on their YouTube channel.

In other words, speaking multiple languages would have no value whatsoever.

These “easy peasy” articles are mean, even if they’re not intended that way.

They f**k up your mindset by making you believe learning a language is a walk in the park.

They make you less willing to make sacrifices and less willing to tough it out to reach fluency.

Then reality hits you…in the nuts if you have any.

It’s a knockout punch because you came into the fight mentally unprepared. This was going to be an easy ride…or so you thought.

And because your false expectations are so far removed from reality, you’re now ready to pack it all in.

You Are Perfectly Capable of Learning a New Language

Any normal person is.

Oh…and most abnormal individuals as well (Don’t you worry, wacko!).

It’s all very doable…

But it’s not going to be easy…

While learning a new language many negative emotions will pay you a visit. And they’re loyal friends. They will keep coming back.

A negative emotion is often a signal that you’re pushing your limits.

And that’s what you want. Even if you don’t realize it now.

It’s like working out. You push your limits to improve.

Yeah, it hurts a bit…but that’s how you get stronger.

If you believe all those “learning language X is so easy you could learn it with earplugs in” articles, and the going gets a little tough, you will think:

Wait a minute, this was supposed to be easy. What’s going on?! I guess I’m not cut out for this.

And then you’ll quit.

But you can’t be a bodybuilder if a little pain makes you quit. And with this mindset you can’t learn a language either.

Pain is part of the learning process, part of getting stronger.

You can read as many “language X is easy to learn” blog posts as you wish, but you can’t take the pain out of the process.

Not gonna happen…

Believing otherwise will only weaken you mentally.

And that—in turn—will shrink your chances of ever speaking another language.

Instead, welcome the pain.

Say “hi” to the struggle.

And watch how you succeed in learning your new language.

Over and out,
Noel

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8 comments

  1. There’s a Thomas Payne quote that starts … “The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph”, so I think Thomas gives this post a thumbs up 🙂

  2. Noel, you continue to inspire me to keep going on this quest and I couldn’t agree more.
    Keep up your good work !!
    Paula aka Anya

  3. Estoy trabajando para aprender español, so your posts are extremely helpful. Even better, they’re fun to read. Thank you for doing it. And thank you for remembering that women read blogs too. It’s rarer than you think among (male) blog authors.

  4. Hell yes mon ami! Tu as absolument raison. Anyone telling you working out or learning a language is easy is just trying to sell you something. Embrace the journey. I always tell myself that language makes the world bigger and that it gives you the ability to tell yourself the most beautiful things you can think of. Ou en francais, une langue fait le monde plus grand et tu peux te dire les plus belles choses que tu peux imaginer.

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