Learning a foreign language is a time-consuming undertaking with a high chance of eventual failure. That is why developing a realistic plan is one of the most crucial things to do, especially for people who want to self-study.
In today’s busy world free time is a luxury. Work, errands, household chores are our priority. And because it is also important to rest and relax (at least occasionally), other activities usually get pushed into the background. The bad news is – you won’t learn a new language without forming a habit of regular study, which is not simple. The good news is – with a good plan, it is perfectly doable.
A good plan is a realistic plan. It must be, first and foremost, feasible. Look over your schedule and see when you have time to fit in your language “lessons”. Don’t aim to study for even 10 minutes a day if you have trouble squeezing in a lunch break on Wednesdays and Fridays. Sure, you may do just fine for a few weeks (we are always wildly enthusiastic at the beginning), but in the long run this won’t work. It is better to spend a few minutes practicing your language skills every other day or three times a week than desperately trying to do it on a daily basis.
Now, when you make sure your plan is within the bounds of possibility, stick to it. Be consistent! Don’t make excuses for skipping your learning sessions. Don’t tell yourself: “Ok, this week I can take a complete break and forget all about learning or revising.” You can’t take a break if you want to be successful. Because one break leads to another, and soon you will decide to give up altogether.
Remember, everything is easier when you have a plan. So create one and then make sure it will be executed.