How can you simulate “outside of your comfort zone” situations?
(1) Take 5 minutes to research terms related to vacuums or some other device that you need to buy. Then Go into a department store, and ask for the pros and cons of the vacuums they have on stock. Only in Arabic. Preferably if there is a line behind you.
(2) Intentionally “get lost” in a neighborhood in the Arabic city you are studying. Then ask for directions in Arabic back to the spot you know and find your way back home. If anyone tries to help you in English, say you are from a country where no one would know the language: Mongolia.
(3) Phone calling — so much of communication is conveyed by body language, seeing each other and that is often a crutch for Arabic students: just call a restaurant to order; call the department store to ask about stuff etc.
(4) Join a gym where you are out of your comfort zone- see point 11
There's a really good article about this here https://nathan-field.com/2016/04/27/20-strategies-for-becoming-an-extremely-high-level-arabic-speaker/
I like #6:
(6) If you don’t sometimes feel nervous, you aren’t working hard enough
Anyone can sit down, at a time of their choosing, with someone whom they are familiar and comfortable with, who knows your speaking patterns and wants to help you, and “perform” Arabic (or any language for that matter).
Whereas the key to really getting good at spoken is making sure a huge portion of your 250 hours take place outside of your comfort zone. You want:
That’s perfectly fine. It’s the only way you will get really good.