A 7-Step Guide to Learning a Foreign Language On Your Own

A 7-Step Guide to Learning a Foreign Language On Your Own

One day, you woke up and decided that you wanted to learn a foreign language on your own.

That’s great!

But you don’t know where to start, do you?

Well, things aren’t all that black and white.

Not to discourage you, but learning a foreign language by yourself isn’t an easy task.

Yes, there are hundreds of valuable resources to be found online, such as audiobooks, exercises, podcasts, apps, etc. But for learning a new language, you need much more than that.

However, there’s always a light at the end of the tunnel.

Learning a language on your own isn’t impossible.

So, today, we will show you step by step how to learn a language effectively by yourself.

How to Learn A New Language By Yourself in 7 Easy Steps

Determine Your Goals

Before you start collecting textbooks, bookmarking podcasts, and apps, the first thing you need to do is to determine your goals.

You may want to write them down. A checklist can be a useful reminder of your goals, an excellent motivator, and, eventually, your progress.

So, here is our suggestion:

  • Consider the language you want to learn. Is it one of the hardest languages to learn? Or perhaps the most spoken language in the world? 
  • How long it will take you to learn the language fluently (if that’s your goal)? Depending on your motivation and time for learning a language, you have to consider this question, too.
  • What are the reasons you want to learn the language? Broaden your cultural understanding or job opportunities?
  • Determine the proficiency level you want to reach. Some of you might want to reach a native fluency level, while others will be satisfied with an intermediate level so that they will be able to have casual conversations with native speakers.
  • Organize your day with enough time to learn a language.

Choose Your Learning Methods

The best way to learn a language is to choose a learning method that can help you learn the language efficiently.

After setting up your goals, you have to find a learning method that suits you.

Not every way of learning a language is ideal for each person. Some are better at listening, others at written documents, etc.

There are many different ways of learning a language.

  • If you enjoy reading, consider learning a language with books.
  • For those who are better at listening, the ideal learning method is listening to podcasts, radio, and YouTube channels specialized in learning languages.
  • Many of us consider conversations with real people incredibly helpful. For them, Justlearn tutors are the best solution.

If you want to achieve fluency, you can’t rely on only one learning method, of course. You have to choose the ones that can help master all the language skills: listening, reading, writing, and conversational skills.

However, one of the methods will be your priority. 

You want to learn Spanish, for example, and you are good at listening. Make the most out of it then. Listen to Spanish podcasts. You will master your listening skills but also build your vocabulary, even learn Spanish slang.

You can also find a YouTube channel for learning Spanish. You will master your listening skills but also improve pronunciation, vocabulary, and writing.

How Much Money Do You Have to Spend to Learn a Language?

Consider your budget.

The amount of money you have to invest depends on many things, such as the learning methods you’ve chosen and the proficiency level you want to achieve.

Luckily, there are many free ways of learning languages. Mainly, you’ll only need an internet connection, a laptop, tablet, or iPhone, and that’s all.

Blogs about languages, like Justlearn blog, are particularly useful and entertaining, too.

By reading, you can learn cultural fun facts about the language, get to know some grammar rules, build your vocabulary, learn the differences between similar languages, etc.

Free language learning websites, podcasts, or language learning apps are also available for anyone.

If you get to the advanced level, you will surely need much more resources than mainly require a premium membership. Still, to achieve an intermediate proficiency level in any language, you can achieve it entirely for free.

Set A Deadline And Make a Plan 

We’ve said that learning a foreign language on your own isn’t easy. It, however, shouldn’t take forever. That’s why you have to set a deadline. 

For example, if you start learning French from scratch, set your deadline to achieve an A2 proficiency level. Don’t let that be a year, but some reasonable deadline. Let’s say that you give yourself a deadline of 90 days to achieve this level of proficiency. 

Along with the deadline, make a plan for your learning. It doesn’t have to be staring at textbooks but some other, even fun ways that will get you into that language. Play games, watch movies and tv shows with or without subtitles or listen to the radio. 

The point is to ‘be occupied’ with the language every day.

Schedule Your Time

Organize your day by making a schedule and sticking to it.  

Make sure you practice the language for at least 15 minutes a day. Whether it is that learning ten new words, reading a blog post, or listening to podcasts, everything counts.

Ideally, you should learn the language for one hour a day.

So, by organizing your learning schedule and setting a deadline, you’ll be completely aware of your goal. 

This kind of organization will make you move forward to that ‘finish line.’

Speed Up Your Learning Process

Setting a deadline is an excellent motivation that leads you through the entire learning process.

However, sometimes it can be quite the opposite. 

Not that you will forget anything, but when you start learning the language from the beginning, some of the phrases and rules you can learn very quickly.

Let us suppose that you started learning Italian. It surely isn’t the easiest language to learn, but it isn’t the hardest either. You’ve learned to read and write in no time. Pronunciation is also a piece of cake, as well as some of the common Italian phrases.

You’ve succeeded in learning all these things faster than you’ve expected. You’ve been doing exercises, too. And according to your plan, you still don’t need to learn something more challenging.

Well, change that. Speed up your learning process. Feel free to start with some more challenging things.

Immerse Yourself Into The Language

When talking about learning a language, do you know what immersion means?

It is one of the methods to help you learn the language fast and fluently. It is also one of the most difficult ways because you learn the language by using it all the time and in every situation.

One of the best ways to immerse yourself in the language is to spend some time in the country so that you have the opportunity to speak to native speakers only.

Not everyone has the opportunity and budget to learn the language this way.

Luckily, there are other helpful ways to immerse yourself. 

So, if you don’t have that privilege to practice and master the language, go in another direction. To move forward in learning, make this way fits your daily routine. 

Watching movies in another language, listening to podcasts and radio, reading books, and newspapers, for example, are some of the ways.

Final Thoughts

Now you have a guide that can help you learn a foreign language on your own.

To get to your goal, be persistent. Go beyond the given resources.

Make sure to sustain your motivation to learn the language.

Practice the language every day and make it your daily routine, just like brushing your teeth or having breakfast.

And when you think that you can’t learn any longer, find a way to practice the language the fun way. Play games, watch tv shows, or use flash apps. You’ll take a break from learning, but your brain will continue practicing.

If you’re interested in becoming fluent in a new language, check out these top online learning resources: Kick off your learning with Babbel, where interactive, enjoyable lessons are designed to blend smoothly into your routine, fostering fast and effective language learning. For those aiming for an in-depth understanding, Udemy provides a broad spectrum of courses from basic to advanced levels. To enhance your speaking skills, Preply connects you with native speakers for personalized coaching, ensuring significant improvement. Take advantage of a 50% discount on your first lesson at Preply with this link.

How to learn a language by yourself?

Determine your goals, choose your learning methods, consider your time, set a deadline, schedule your lessons, speed up the learning process, immerse yourself in the language

What is the best way to learn foreign language?

The best way to learn a language is to choose a learning method that can help you learn the language efficiently. After setting up your goals, you have to find a learning method that suits you. Not every way of learning a language is ideal for each person. Some are better at listening, others at written documents, etc. There are many different ways of learning a language. If you enjoy reading, consider learning a language with books. For those who are better at listening, the ideal learning method is listening to podcasts, radio, and YouTube channels specialized in learning languages. Many of us consider conversations with real people incredibly helpful. For them, Justlearn tutors are the best solution.

How much money do you have to spend to learn a language?

Consider your budget. The amount of money you have to invest depends on many things, such as the learning methods you’ve chosen and the proficiency level you want to achieve. Luckily, there are many free ways of learning languages. Mainly, you’ll only need an internet connection, a laptop, tablet, or iPhone, and that’s all. Blogs about languages, like Justlearn blog, are particularly useful and entertaining, too. By reading, you can learn cultural fun facts about the language, get to know some grammar rules, build your vocabulary, learn the differences between similar languages, etc.

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