It is worth asking yourself every now and then, if you love what you are doing? And of course, if the answer is yes then push forward with gusto. In contrast, there is also an obvious conclusion that could be drawn, if you don’t love it then maybe try something else.
This is bad logic and could prevent you from achieving anything!
Take athletes, for example. They spend hour upon hour in the gym, on the training track or in recovery.
Often they have to spend extended time on the sidelines in rehab overcoming an injury.
They deal with soreness, constant pain, early starts and an overbearing coach barking orders.
But, they don’t do it for the long hours at training or the soreness or the injuries.
They do it for the glory of the win on game day. For the moment when they get their name in lights.
Similarly we don’t learn Spanish for the hours spent memorizing verb tables. We do it because it is an incredible feeling to communicate with another human in their native language.
So when you ask yourself ‘do I love it?’ switch your focus from the current slog on the training track to the glory at the end.
Where Do You Put Your Focus?
Do you put your focus on the long frustrating hours studying or do you put your focus on what you are going to get out of the long hours of practice?
Where you put your focus can have a huge determining factor on motivation.
There is the old question that often gets asked ‘are you a glass half empty or glass half full person?’ well this isn’t set from birth. You can change it.
Where you put your focus determines how you feel.
There is an old Indian proverb that goes like this:
An old Cherokee Indian is talking with his grandson one evening about a battle that goes on inside the mind.
He says, ‘My son, there is a battle that goes on between two ‘wolves’ inside all of us. One is Evil. It is anger, sorrow, jealousy, regret, greed, envy, arrogance, guilt, self-pity, lies, false pride, inferiority, resentment, superiority, and ego.
The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, humility, kindness, serenity, hope, benevolence, truth, generosity, empathy, compassion and faith.’
After a minute the grandson then asked his grandfather: ‘Which wolf wins?’
The old Cherokee simply replied, ‘The one you feed.’
Think about which wolf you feed when you are trying to improve your Spanish. The wolf that says ‘You’re crap, this is a waste of time, you would rather be playing x-box’ or the wolf that says ‘You can do it, it is going to be worth it, think of the excitement when you achieve your goal’
It Is Actually A Decision You Can Make
What you love isn’t something that happens in your subconscious. It isn’t something that you have no control over whatsoever.
You can control what you love and you can choose to enjoy something more.
It is an unusual idea, but it is possible to change the way you feel about something simply by changing the your associations about that thing in your mind.
What is there to love?
Think about what you could love more about learning a new language.
There are awesome opportunities such as to live, work or play in a new country.
Many have met a significant other through language. Many have lived and worked in a new country and found incredible experiences.
Living in a different country, especially if the native language of that country is different to your home is a real thrill. It is a huge culture shock and can open your mind to new ideas concepts, experiences, and more.
I personally love the food, people and language of Spain . It is fantastic to spend time in Spain and I want to return again soon.
Get Leverage On Yourself
If you want to ramp up your level of enjoyment in learning a new language then think about what you stand to gain if you achieve your goal and what you stand to lose if you don’t.
Firstly think about what you stand to lose. Take out a journal, notepad, Evernote … whatever you prefer and write down 5 things that you stand to miss out on if you don’t learn Spanish.
What could you miss out on, the people you could meet, the food you could try, the adventures you could experience. If you don’t achieve your goal will it be another failed dream that nags at you over the coming years.
Secondly write down things that you stand to gain. New experiences, people, experiences and the satisfaction that you have achieved something worthwhile.
Look at these two short lists whenever you a struggling to push yourself forward.
Keep Asking Yourself?
If you can ask yourself again whether you love learning a new language and the answer isn’t what you had hoped. Don’t give it up. Think about how you can change the answer to the question.
Get some leverage on yourself. Think about what you could gain and how much fun is to had from the experience of learning a new language. Feed the right wolf.
Look for the fun points then…
Ask yourself again … Do you love it?