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  • Hey, what's up guys this video is about how to form daily habits that support your language learning

  • so you won't even have to think about it.

  • I'm gonna share with you 17 habits that have helped me learn languages in the past.

  • What works for me might not work for you,

  • But I always recommend trying new things, and all of these habits are at least worth a try.

  • In order to automate my study,

  • I create a schedule of various triggers

  • throughout my daily routine. Triggers are anything you do on a daily basis that you can use to remind yourself to do something

  • in your target language, and the key is that this becomes an automatic

  • habit every time you reach that trigger. I divide these triggers into three main groups:

  • right before going to bed, right after waking up, and then various trigger times throughout the day, such as

  • eating breakfast, getting into the car, taking a shower,

  • things like that. The last group is the broadest so that's what I'm going to talk about first. The easiest way to schedule a routine

  • is to identify any time of day that you normally listen to music or any time of day that you can listen to music.

  • Then you're gonna use that time to listen to either

  • music in your foreign language, Pimsleur CDs or other audio courses that you can use to learn the language,

  • podcasts in the foreign language, or

  • Audiobooks that you can find online. I did a video last year about how every time I get into the car

  • I automatically put in a Pimsleur CD, and that's an automatic trigger, so I'm studying every time I'm in the car.

  • I'm also studying every time

  • I'm in the shower. I went to a garage sale and bought an old pair of computer speakers for like four dollars,

  • and I put those in my bathroom.

  • I also have this old mp3 player that I loaded a bunch of audio files onto, and then I put that on every time

  • I'm taking a shower.

  • And it's an easy way to learn while I would otherwise just be

  • mindlessly washing my hair. If you spend a lot of time cooking or cleaning your house,

  • this is the perfect opportunity to practice your languages because you might already listen to music or podcasts or

  • Audiobooks while you do that stuff. If you work a tedious job that doesn't require a whole lot of mental capacity,

  • this is also the perfect opportunity. I used to work on a goat farm in El Salvador

  • where just spent hours a day carrying grass from the meadow into the goat farm

  • So they could eat. And every day, I would just put in my headphones

  • And I would listen to coffee break Spanish, which is a spanish-language podcast.

  • And I would listen to that for hours every day, and it was really successful.

  • I also had a friend who works in a factory and she just pulls a lever all day every day for her job.

  • So she doesn't have to think a whole lot and she's able to listen to music or to

  • audiobooks or whatever she wants to listen to.

  • Every time you go for a run or go to the gym

  • This is perfect because you don't have to spend a whole lot of mental energy

  • thinking about doing those activities.

  • You can do all those things while focusing on listening to the audio files that are helping you learn your language.

  • I also have a bunch of triggers throughout the day that helped me remember to read in my foreign language.

  • I always keep a foreign language book sitting right next to my bathtub

  • and so every time I go to take a bath, which is probably once or twice a week,

  • I'll grab that book and it's a nice relaxing way to spend half an hour reading in my foreign language.

  • I've talked about this a lot in my other videos,

  • but if you have a phone or a computer or a tablet or anything you can go into the settings on that

  • device change it to the language that you're learning and this is gonna be a great way to force yourself to

  • automatically have to study every time you use your phone you can also do this with Facebook with Wikipedia with

  • YouTube and then you're gonna be learning every time you go to those websites.

  • Along those same lines. I use Google Calendar to schedule events during my day.

  • And I write them in foreign languages,

  • so that way right before I go to that class or go to whatever I have scheduled,

  • I get a little notification

  • in the language that I'm learning and I pronounced it silently to myself or

  • out loud if no one else is around, and this is just a great way to give yourself little opportunities to practice pronunciation

  • throughout the day without having to schedule a whole block of time for practicing. A few months ago

  • I did a video about how to use sticky notes to learn your language.

  • And I just placed these all around my house on different things.

  • And every time I see my sticky notes somewhere around my house throughout the day,

  • that's a little trigger that reminds me to practice my language, and then I pronounce the word of...

  • whatever the word is of the item that I'm looking at and that's a great way to give myself

  • little reminders to practice all throughout the day. You're also naturally gonna get a lot of practice throughout the day by forming personal

  • relationships with people that speak your target language. If you already hang out with friends to speak your language, then that's perfect.

  • You don't have to look any further, but if there's nobody in your area that speaks your language,

  • you can go on websites like interpals or apps like

  • HelloTalk or Lingbe,

  • And these are a great ways to connect with native speakers of the language that you're learning.

  • Once you've made some friends that speak your target language all you have to do is just make it a habit of talking to them

  • on a daily basis. Talk to them on Facebook Messenger and whatsapp,

  • follow them on Twitter or on Instagram, and start doing things that normal friends do in everyday life.

  • Leave comments on their photos in your target language.

  • Just start interacting with them and become part of the community in a natural way,

  • just as if you are a native speaker of that language. This next step might be a little controversial,

  • but if you can find a boyfriend or a girlfriend that speaks your target language, and

  • especially if this is someone that doesn't speak your native language,

  • then you are golden.

  • Because this is somebody that you're gonna want to spend time talking to every day you're gonna want to talk to them you're gonna want

  • to message them you're gonna want to Skype with them. I mean you don't have to force yourself to practice. This is just something

  • that's gonna come very naturally because you want to do it, and

  • interpersonal communication is

  • probably the best way of improving your language skills.

  • I'm not saying you should start dating someone just so that you can use them for language practice,

  • but it is gonna be a big help if you can find someone that speaks your target language.

  • The second main trigger time is right before you go to sleep.

  • I usually do a little bit of language study when I'm already in bed with the blankets over me right before I pass out.

  • Psychologists say that right before bedtime is statistically one of the best times to memorize things because

  • while you're sleeping, your brain is

  • naturally gonna be going over some of the stuff that you had just been learning about

  • right before you went to bed,

  • so this is a great strategy for solidifying a lot of the things that you were learning into memories while you sleep.

  • I usually do something easy because I don't want to strain myself mentally right before going to bed.

  • So I have a book in Spanish sitting right next to my bed that I read for 10 or 20 minutes right before falling asleep.

  • Sometimes I'll go on YouTube and look up guided meditations in my target language. And these sound kind of weird and fruity,

  • but really it's just someone speaking softly in your target language, and they're helping you to relax,

  • and they're just saying nice positive things until you eventually drift to sleep. In fact a lot of times

  • I'll type in "guided meditation for falling asleep"

  • and

  • This is just a really nice relaxing way to end your day in the language that you're learning.

  • I also sometimes use my Memrise app right before going to bed. I do this because bedtime is statistically the best time for forming memories, and

  • Memrise itself is not that mentally strenuous,

  • so I don't feel like I'm putting a lot of stress on myself right before going to bed. It's pretty easy,

  • It's pretty chill you just play through a few levels

  • and then go to bed. My last trigger time where I always practice my language is right after waking up.

  • And I think this is one of the best times to practice your language because you're setting yourself up for the rest of the day.

  • To be thinking in that language and you want to set yourself in the mode and get yourself prepared,

  • and set yourself up to be practicing that language throughout the day.

  • One of the things that I do is I have a notebook sitting right next to my bed, and I'll memorize

  • predetermined phrases that I want to memorize in that language.

  • I like to memorize phrases that have kind of a weird construction or something that I'm not totally

  • familiar with yet or

  • anything, that's

  • significantly different in my target language from my native language. If you memorize these predetermined phrases,

  • then you'll start to kind of internalize those rules.

  • And they'll feel more natural to you as you progress in the language. A lot of times

  • I memorize Bible verses, but you can also do song lyrics or lines of poetry or

  • phrases from a book that you've read. It's a good idea to have a pencil next to you while you're reading your favorite book in

  • Your target language, and then every time you run into a weird sentence that you don't fully understand or

  • It's a little more advanced sentence that you want to use to push yourself or even if it's just a sentence that

  • uses a

  • construction that you're not entirely familiar with but you're trying to learn.

  • These are all good candidates for sentences to write down in your notebook, and then use those to memorize

  • to help push yourself to learn and internalize these rules. And then you just spend five or ten minutes every morning when you wake up

  • memorizing these sentences,

  • and it's a really nice way to start your day in the foreign language.

  • Another thing that I do a lot in the morning is journal, and I always journal in my target language and

  • you might think that it would be a

  • little more logical to

  • journal when you go to bed at night while your memories of that day are still fresh in your mind, and that's true,

  • but I just prefer to do it in the morning

  • on days where I have some free time. And you're not limited to these things. Anything that you can think of to do right in

  • the morning, right after you wake up,

  • if you stay consistent with that, then that's gonna be a really big help. And the morning when you wake up before you have any

  • commitments during your day. This is a really good time to commit yourself to whatever study method you choose, and it's easier to stay consistent

  • before all of your commitments throughout the day start happening. So thanks for watching my video.

  • I hope you implement some of these language learning habits into your daily life.

  • If you like the video be sure to like and subscribe, and I'll see you guys next week.

Hey, what's up guys this video is about how to form daily habits that support your language learning

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16 habits for learning languages

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    Samuel posted on 2018/06/20
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