We all think about tomorrow. We ask ourselves questions such as where would we like to live? What job would we enjoy and how can we be happier? Then we think it over and realise we need to work long hard hours to improve these areas of our lives. But is there a way to work smarter, rather than harder, to attain our goals?
An Overlooked Skill
At school we were encouraged to learn different languages to get ahead in life. Maybe some of us questioned the reasons for learning a foreign language? At the time, learning from thick and incomprehensible books made learning a second language seem impossible. For that reason a lot of us gave up. Unfortunately we gave up on a skill which could have provided a great income stream.
How To Get Paid More
Rather than working harder for less money, it's important to realise that all worldwide economies respect skill. No matter where you travel to, you will always be paid what you are worth in terms of skills you can offer. A skill can also be a hobby you like to work on in your free time which eventually nets you a lot of money. It's not unknown for people who've studied Japanese as a hobby to be offered a well paid promotion working in Japan.
A Golden Tongue
As of now, Mandarin is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world and is in great demand. Every year, English teachers are asked if they will relocate to cities in China. Although they will be teaching English, applicants for these roles will be looked upon favourably if they can speak some Mandarin. To fuel this growing demand, publishing houses appear annually at events like the London book fair advertising their latest Mandarin home study courses. They promise to supply materials which show the fastest way to learn a language. The number of companies and learning materials available can be quite overwhelming.
Where To Begin?
Okay, so you've decided you want to learn a second language. Now what? Well, as they say, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Your first step is to decide if you want to study a language that's profitable, or a language that will be needed if you want to travel to a specific country. Here's a short checklist to help you decide which language you want to study:
- Which language interests you the most?
- Would you like to live in a country where that language is spoken?
- Is that language in big demand in the job market?
The Secret To Learning A New Language Quickly
When deciding how to learn a new language, it is important to realise you will need help. You can certainly learn quite a bit on your own but practice makes perfect, and practice with a professional is always best. The most effective language learning method is one-on-one practice with a native speaker. In person this can be quite expensive at most language schools. But on the internet one-on-one tuition is a whole lot cheaper and also more convenient. You can learn face to face in a video call at a time which suits your schedule. Most professional teachers will also offer a structured course which can often include homework to ensure you learn as quickly as possible.
Small Efforts Yield Big Rewards
As well as studying with a professional teacher, there are small exercises that will really help to advance your skills. As an example, the best way to learn English is to include it in those day to day moments when you have spare time. Perhaps you're stuck in a dentist's waiting room and a little bored? Then that would be the perfect time to read through English vocabulary cards. Simply buy a pack of blank cards and write an English word on one side of a card, then write the meaning in your own language on the other side of the card. With small efforts such as vocabulary cards you can quickly increase your word knowledge and more importantly language power.
Visualise Your Future
Once you've chosen a target language, and begun to study it, it is important to believe in yourself at all times. Although many people are asking how to learn different languages, do not forget why you chose to learn a language. Practice visualising yourself speaking fluently in a situation that appeals to you. Whether you see yourself speaking Korean in a boardroom, or shopping in an Autumn tree lined street in Paris – do not lose sight of your personal goal. It is the success of your goal which will ensure that tomorrow turns out the way you want it to.