"Spanish pronunciation is difficult"
"Spanish is similar to English so it should be relatively easy to learn"
These are 2 of the most common beliefs people have about learning Spanish, before learning the language.
Neither of them are entirely true and believing that they are, could be the cause for unnecessary struggle or disappointment.
But how do you know what to expect if you've never done it before?
That's where I come in!
From someone who's been there and come out on the other end, here's my list of what you should know before embarking on this remarkable journey to Spanish fluency:
What to expect when you're learning Spanish...
👉 While you may have to train your mouth to make certain movements that are new to you, (in order to create some Spanish sounds), Spanish pronunciation is actually much easier than you think!
All the letters in the alphabet only have one sound.
Each letter is pronounced the same way, in every word (there is ONE exception... of course!).
This makes learning pronunciation actually one of the easiest aspects of learning the language 100%!
👉Yes, Spanish & English are very similar. In fact, they say that almost 40% of English words have a related word in Spanish.
However, the grammar and other areas of the language are quite different.
Conclusion: This doesn't mean learning will be a breeze.
👉🏼Like all good things in life, you'll have to work at it & practice consistently, to see real progress.
Even if you study & practice every day, each day will not be better than the last.
It is sometimes referred to as a rollercoaster ride. There are good days and there are bad days.
Today may not be your day but the good thing is, you can rest assured knowing that tomorrow could easily be your best day yet!
👉 Limiting beliefs that are stored in your subconscious will start to bubble up as you're forced to step outside of your comfort zone.
Learning languages makes you do that... I mean who really feels comfortable speaking like a 3 year old to a bunch of adults? (apart from 3 year olds, of course).
Be prepared to feel vulnerable & uncomfortable on the regular, for a while.
👉 You will discover a new side of you. Each language has its own culture and each culture has its own personality.
As you begin to think in a new language, it becomes a part of you and you become a part of it.
Different tones, gestures & expressions along with the new words & ways of thinking.
This often results in the learner displaying a slightly different personality in one language compared to another.
For example, I have learned to be much more direct since I started speaking Spanish.
As a native Canadian English speaker, we're known for being very polite (often overly) and we tend to "beat around the bush" to avoid offending people - always looking for the most gentle way to say things.
I've learned that while they can still be very polite, Spanish speakers (at least in Latin America) are very direct.
I've adapted this trait into my overall personality but I am still much more direct and assertive in Spanish than I am in English.
But regardless of how much your personality changes when you learn a new language, your confidence is surely to be affected, one way or the other.
If you can persist through the obstacles (the rollercoaster ride!) and come out on the other end, then your confidence will soar!
Being able to speak another language sometimes feels like having a superpower. ¡Es increíble!
You can do so many things that weren't possible before.
It makes you feel good. It makes you feel capable of so much more. Because you are.
So even though it may not be all that you expect, I can assure you that it will be much more than you could have ever imagined.
Being able to speak Spanish will open up opportunities that you currently don't even know exist.
Are you ready to see what Spanish can bring into your life?