If you are reading this blog willing to get some advice to learn a language, I’m sure you are expecting some magic shortcut or formula. Many of you have already let me know that my articles and method can also be used for any other purpose in life, as they’re quite valid for various reasons. And what if I say you can’t do it?
I was just a kid, four I think, and I had a great idea. After burning the family sofa and nearly killing my mum with a heart attack when I decided to cross the motorway unexpectedly carrying a little flag she just bought me from the circus. For the very first time, little Paco asked mummy something worth asking, I wanted her to get me to English classes.
It was the best idea I’ve ever had as thanks to that moment I can say I have a thriving career now, running my own school and teaching English and Spanish as second languages. But I still don’t know how much responsibility belongs to grandpa.
You cannot speak English, you’d suffocate!
Grandpa was one of the most serious people I’ve met, even more than me if that’s possible. However; he wouldn’t miss an opportunity to mock at his third grandchild, so far the naughtiest of all (I think some younger cousins were worse, but that’s another story).
When I asked mum about English lessons, which I really wanted by then, grandpa said I would suffocate if I tried. I bit my lip, nearly started crying and looked back at him in anger just to find him laughing out loud.
I soon became the first in the class studying English, I started reading English books, watching films in English, writing my own staff just for fun, reading about motorcycles, speaking to people, inventing stories in English, pronouncing better than anyone else in my class and facing the biggest challenge I had ever faced. And I succeeded.
I also started the Thinking Languages! method applied to myself, and not knowing anything. Years of experience and studying at university really opened my mind years later. But by that time I had been confused with a native English speaker a few times, even by native speakers.
My English is not perfect, but nor is my Spanish. I make mistakes in both languages and I really don’t care, unless I mess up in the class! My pronunciation is what it is, I am terrible pronouncing Spanish, probably worse than in English, and as everyone else I misspell words in both languages. We don’t have to be perfect, but we must feel confident and go for it.
At the end, I beat up my grandpa, I didn’t suffocate. I only wish I could have thanked him for challenging me and totally changing my life, but he didn’t even live to see me finish high-school. However; he did live enough to know that I learnt English and could speak it fluently.
That’s why I don’t want to motivate you at all in this post. You are a total deception, you won’t make it! 🙂
Don’t keep Thinking!