I have plenty of friends that tell me they would learn Spanish only if they had the time.
“Ugh, I'm just too busy right now. If it wasn't for <insert
activity excuse> I would definitely learn Spanish.”
I often hear this after someone tells me that they want to learn Spanish. Then when I give a simple suggestion as to how they could get started, I get hit with the dreaded busy speech.
But You Don't Understand, I REALLY Am Busy
I know you have important things to do in your life. Your job, your social life, the hobbies you enjoy, the side projects you've started, family obligations, and social media
stalking browsing, and looking for pokemon are all filling your time.
Your calendar is full of stuff to do.
If you're an overachiever like me, most of those things on your to-do list were jotted down when you felt energetic, optimistic, and inspired. But here is the hard fact…
Most of your to-dos will never get done.
In the US, we often use the word busy as a badge of self-importance. If you ask someone what they have going on, and they say “well, not much, I'm really not that busy” you automatically think “wow, what a loser.”
Listening to a podcast recently, I heard that the word busy indicates a feeling of lack of control over your time and a lack of prioritization in your life.
If you always feel busy, you feel rushed going from thing to thing but don't have a deep sense that you have mastery of your time and are doing what's really important to you.
Busyness is usually a signal of overwhelm with burnout just around the corner.
The Hard Truth: No One is That Busy
Have you ever heard anyone over the age of 3 say, “I was too busy to go to the bathroom today, so I just sat here and soiled myself.” Or, “I know I smell pretty bad but I haven't bathed in a week because I was way too busy.”
Unless you work with people that have severe mental illness, then the answer to this question is probably no.
Why? Because we all know that these things are non-negotiable and unacceptable to social norms.
Here's my question to you: Why not make your own desires non-negotiables.
What You're Really Saying: I Don't Think I Can Learn Another Language
What's really behind the busy excuse is lack of motivation that comes from a belief that the goal to learn another language is unattainable.
We have to shift that belief.
When I first started to learn Spanish, my initial struggles with understanding native speakers and feeling overwhelmed with how much there was to learn was daunting.
I almost quit.
But I didn't give up.
Why? I reminded myself that there are many bilingual people in the world. Think about how many people you know that speak more than one language. Do you really think they are smarter than you?
The answer is no.
You Need the Right Approach
Learning a language is not a secret gift given to only a chosen few. (I address this misconception in Why You Haven't Mastered Spanish).
It is within your reach.
With a little commitment and consistency, you can achieve your goal in less time than you think.
The problem is, most of us never get started.
We keep dreaming of “one day.”
Goals without deadlines are dreams. The only way to get your head out of the clouds and into working towards what you want is to set realistic, achievable goals that you are motivated to achieve.
And the first step is action.
Take one action right now towards your goal of mastering Spanish. No matter how small.
If you're not sure what to do first, download my free guide to learning Spanish in 15 minutes a day. In it, I provide the proven techniques I've learned over the years that will put you on course to speaking Spanish now.
Don't put off your goals any longer. If you're still reading this, you certainly have time to learn a language.
You just need the right approach.
I want to share with you the efficient learning hacks that I've developed to help me learn Spanish while working full time, having a child, pursuing a master's degree, traveling, doing volunteer work, taking dance lessons, and spending time with friends.
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¡Hola! My name is Tamara Marie. I'm a language coach specializing in brain-friendly methods to learn foreign languages faster. I speak English (US native), Spanish (advanced), and Brazilian Portuguese (beginner). I'm a Latin music & dance addict and passionate about helping people learn languages.