Happy New Year to everyone! (I know it is not the new year everywhere in the world but happy new year to all of you anyways!)
With the start of the new year many people think and talk about what they achieved in the year that just finished, and what they want to achieve in the year that is now here.
What are your goals for English language learning this year?
How big is your desire to learn?
How much motivation do you feel?
In this blog post I want to talk about HOW to get to (achieve) your goals in English this year. Here is my advice:
Sit down and write down exactly WHAT you want in English this year. Be specific.
Do you want to learn a certain number of new words? Do you want to be able to understand an entire movie without subtitles? Do you want to pass the IELTS or CAE exams? Do you want to travel and have easy conversations in English? Your desires (what you want) are unique to you. Being clear about what you want is the first step to getting what you want. If you just want to just “get better in English”, this is not specific enough. Take the time to really think about very specific goals, and write them down!
Write down exactly WHY you want these things in English.
If you want to pass the CAE exam, WHY do you want this? Will it make your parents happy? Will it help you to get a better paying job? Why do you want a better paying job? Why do you want to make more money? Why, why, why…Really think about what is at the heart of what you want. Where is the desire to learn English truly coming from? It is very important to be clear and understand why you want what you want. It will help motivate you and help you to be strong in the times that reaching your goal is difficult.
Write down your ideas about HOW to get what you want
If your goal is to have easy conversations in English when you travel, and you want this because you love connecting with other people……what are you going to do about this? Are you going to take a class? (I am offering classes online and exciting full immersion courses in Canada this year!) Are you going to find an English speaking friend who lives in your city? Write down as many ideas as you can think of, then keep writing more ideas. Don’t let your pencil stop writing. Just keep writing ideas, and do not judge your ideas! Do not erase an idea because you think it is impossible, write and keep any ideas you have, even if these ideas seem unrealistic, silly or impossible.
Make or find a symbol of your goal and put it somewhere you can see it often. Or write your How + What = Why
Psychologists have learned that when we are reminded of our goals we are more likely to achieve them. Your symbol will be a personal reminder, so it can be whatever you like. Remember your “why”, the desire that motivates you to achieve your goal. If your goal (your WHAT) is to learn 500 new words and your WHY is because improving in English will help you communicate with a new friend in English and your HOW is to read an English newspaper and use your phone as a dictionary, write something like “English newspaper + 500 Words = Better conversations with my friend!” on a piece of paper and put it on your bedroom mirror.
Trust (Believe) that if you understand WHAT you want and WHY you want it, that you will find your way to your goal.
You might be surprised how even ideas for HOW that you think are impossible or unrealistic will happen. I have been surprised many times in my life and have learned that sometimes the impossible or unrealistic can be both possible and realistic. Life can surprise us. Don’t limit your possibilities in your mind. If your desires come from your heart and you understand what they are and why it is good for you and others for you to have what you want, you will find your way.
I am excited about how I can help you reach your goals this year. I am developing new group online classes and will continue to offer intensive full immersion courses as well as my private online 1-1 classes.
Have a successful year of learning English in 2017!!