Languages and me.
Hello! Hola! Ciao! Bonjour!
- Have you ever thought that you are too old to learn a new language?
- Or that you don't have the 'space' in your brain or your schedule to fit it?
- Or that you're "just no good at languages"?
I totally understand. I've heard this many times.
In fact I've had the same thoughts myself.
I used to think that once I was a grown up my chance of learning a new language would be gone. And I'm a Spaniard who started learning French at 4 years old and speaks it fluently. I should have been more confident, right?
Wrong. As I approached my 30th birthday I really wanted to be fluent in English. I was jealous of my friends who could speak well or fluently. I couldn't join in their conversations. I wanted to travel the world and be able to communicate, however I didn't know how to speak the 'international language' - English. I wished I had started learning English when I was young, like many of my friends did.
I decided to do a 2 month intensive course and even came to the UK to do it. However, when I went back to Paris where I was living, I didn't use my English and I forgot almost everything. At that time I was spending time with a lot of my Italian friends and was speaking their language, so I concentrated on that, buying myself a self-teaching Italian language course and using my spare time to learn by myself.
A couple of years later I left Paris and moved to a very small Spanish island where most of the population and tourists were Italians. This place was the best school for me. I was speaking with a lot of them, not being embarrassed to make mistakes, and by my early 30s my level of Italian was very high.
However I was also hearing a lot of English and still had that frustration inside me about my low level of English, a little voice in my head telling me "you need to do something".
I decided to listen to this little voice. To make my dream a reality I moved to London. I was 33 years old - it's a bit old to learn another language, especially your fourth language, isn't it ? !
For a long time I struggled - my level was very basic - however I was extremely motivated, I studied and I spoke to as many people as I could, like with Italian not embarrassed to make mistakes, with my strong accent and a determination to be fluent in English some day.
Today, almost 6 years later, my English is not perfect, but I can have a conversation about any subject at a normal speed. I can read books and watch television in English with little need for a dictionary. As well as running ADC Languages, I'm a life coach (qualified in London) and I'm an international multilingual trainer able to work in Spain, France, Italy and the UK.
Why am I telling you all this? Because the moral of my story is that no one is too old, too busy or not 'programmed' to learn a foreign language. If I was able to do it, you are able too. Don't just take my word for it - ADC Languages is teaching over 80 students of all ages, backgrounds and education levels across London who are proving it too. IF YOU WANT TO DO IT, YOU WILL DO IT !!
I hope you are motivated to give it a try! Please contact me if would like to discuss anything or have any more information.
I look forward to speaking to you soon.