#5 Permission granted! I'm still happy to hear about this language learning advice

Apr 20, 2021

If you’re a language lover, you must know that feeling. It is just like walking into Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. There are simply too many languages to choose from. You wanna learn every one of them, you wanna try them, caress them, mingle with them, be them! 

However, you can’t. Or to be more precise, you’re told not to!

You’re told to follow through, to stay single-minded, to switch to other languages until you master one.

But I don’t think so. Why? Listen to this episode to find out!


In this episode, you’ll learn:


  • Everyone’s learning path is unique, Honour it!
  • Try as many languages as you like, if this is what your heart tells you to
  • The learning process is the end in itself. Let it guide you


If you like this episode, please share it and rate it five star. Not only will it make me happy, it also helps more people get to listen to this episode and transform their language learning.



[00:00:00] You do know you're a language nerd, right? As a language nerd, I know the excitement of being able to learn and explore as many languages at the same time. But sometimes we're told not to venture into too many languages because by doing so, you may spread yourself thin and end up not fluent in any of them. But what if I say that you can treat the learning process as an end in itself? And what about seeing the language process as an opportunity to explore and learn more about yourself and your learning style? And what's more, you can quit any languages you no longer feel relevant? Will that make everything so much easier? 


[00:00:43] Hi, I'm That Language Guy. I'm a language nerd with over two decades of language learning experience under my belt. I've also been working in a language service industry for nearly 20 years. After my decade long career as a translator and language instructor. I want to create a community of language aficionados like you. That's why I created this podcast, The Language DriveThru, where I provide you with weekly dose of language learning advice in bite-sized chunks. So if you're passionate about language learning, you're in the right place. Now sit tight and get ready for a weekly language learning delight right here in the Language DriveThru. 


[00:01:28] Hey, there. Language nerd. Welcome to the Language DriveThru, I'm That Language Guy. If you haven't already, subscribe to our podcast channel. So you get a fresh dose of language learning advice every Tuesday. 


[00:01:43] If you're passionate about language learning, you must know that it's difficult to resist the temptation of learning multiple languages, even when the one you're currently learning is not quite fluent. But today I want to give you that permission. I want you to know that it is totally OK to learn as many languages at the same time, if that's what you feel like doing. Well, let's say you can sometimes learn two languages at once, or you can sometimes juggling between several languages at the same time. For example, you can start to learn Japanese for half the year and you just drop it and go on to take Spanish for another half of year. And when you think you're done, you can drop Spanish and come back to Japanese for another six-month study session, if that's what you like. And you can even quit a language you're learning if you think it's no longer relevant. 


[00:02:40] Well, indeed, if you search on the Internet, there are lots of lots of conflicting pieces of advice. Well, there's a group of people who claim that it is important to learn a language to fluency before you switch to another. There is, however, another group of people who claim that it is OK to learn as many languages as you like. And although I'm currently leaning toward the first group of people, I used to be the second group of people for over two decades. And here's the story. 


[00:03:15] From my early 20s to early 30s, I was so curious about learning as many languages there are in the world. And basically I've tried German, Italian, French, Japanese, Korean, Dutch, Spanish, Portuguese, you name it. However, as of now, only English, Italian and French are the languages I can claim I'm fluent in. But I know that I had a blast exploring those languages all these years and now I know that it is time for me to settle down. And Japanese is the language that I chose to settle down with. So what I wanted to tell you is that every language learner's path is unique and you have to gather and listen to as much advice as possible. But remember, at the end of the day, you're the one that have the final say. So you must find a piece of advice that you feel most relevant. And no one, even the most seasoned language learners, can dictate how you learn your languages. 


[00:04:24] And sometimes I feel the learning process is the end in itself. The process is a practice that you can train yourself to be an efficient language learner and you can only know whether a language is a good match for you if you roll up your sleeves and try and learn the language yourself. I think it's pretty much like being in a relationship. You got to try to be with that person before you know whether you guys can get along. And when you feel something isn't right, there's no point in keeping him or her by your side. So my point is you can't think your way through clarity. It is all about experimenting. Through implementing all the tips you have. You can see if they truly work. So I'd say follow your heart and instinct. If you think is about time to drop a language or learning a new one, do that by all means. 


[00:05:20] And there's one last thing I want to add before we go. If you choose to walk down that multilingual path, then bear the potentially negative impacts with a smile. If you choose to learn multiple languages at the same time, that means you have less time dedicated to one single language and that would definitely lead to slower progress. You also need to deal with the frustrations of constantly mixing up different languages you're learning. But then again, if that's what your heart tells you to do, just go for it like there's no tomorrow. 


[00:05:57] Now, over to you, do you like to learn one language at a time or do you like to indulge yourself and learn many languages at once? Or do you have a middle-of-the-road approach that you can share with us? Please do so in the comment down below. 


[00:06:14] So did you like this episode? If you do, rate it and share it so more people can get to listen to it. And don't forget to come on over to my website, thatlanguageguy.com, and subscribe to my email list, what you would get a weekly dose of language learning ideas and occasional heart to heart in your inbox. That's thatlanguageguy.com. And that's it for this episode of the Language DriveThru, I'll catch you next time. 

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