Maintaining Your Motivation

A very common obstacle for students of Italian (or any other foreign language) happens when you start to think you’ve taken on a task that is too difficult, complicated, time-consuming or even useless.

These are the kind of thoughts that, when one’s original enthusiasm has run its course, can lead you to abandon the study entirely.

Therefore it’s essential to maintain a strong motivation in order to not give up, to keep moving forward and realize your dreams.

Try to divide your work into a lot of small steps.

For example: “I’ll learn 90 new words a month” (which is only three a day), or “Know exactly what to say when I order a cappuccino” or even “Know the difference between the passato prossimo and imperfetto verb forms.”

Setting priorities is another way to reinforce your determination. It’s like going to the gym. Sometimes it’s boring, and it takes a lot of time before you start seeing real results. Therefore it’s very important to keep deliberately thinking of positive images: “I’m getting more and more in shape every day, this summer in Venice I’ll be able to wear that blue dress I like so much!”

For example, a linguistic priority goal to set might be that you want to be able to watch a movie in Italian — without subtitles — and understand at least 75% of the dialogue.

Finally, a good habit to get into is rewarding yourself every time you reach a new objective! Make a list of your goals and when you reach one according to plan, treat yourself to something nice: a drink with friends, a pizza, a round-trip ticket to Venice…

So… what are the goals you want to accomplish in the Italian language? What are the obstacles you’re facing, and how do you plan to reward yourself once you overcome them?

See you soon!

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