Last week (technically this week, as I published the blog post late) I felt like I was losing a bit of momentum with Danish so I publicly stated my goals that I wanted to achieve by today, Sunday the 27th of March 2016.
I’ve had mixed experiences with publicly stating goals. Although it can be a huge motivation because you want to be consistent and do what you say you are going to do, it can also be massively demotivating if you don’t achieve the goals, much more so than normal. Not only are you letting yourself down, but you are also letting others down who are now expecting something from you.
Let’s have a look at how I’ve done this week. Did I do what I said I’d do?
Weekly Goal 1: Work through the Danish textbook ‘Ordet er Frit’
Unfortunately, I haven’t done this at all. The plan was to work through 6 exercises in the course of the week that I have chosen in advance. Some of them were listening exercises, others were written exercises. I planned on working when I had time on the train, during lunch breaks and in the evenings after my baby had gone to bed. I will try and do this again by next week.
During my train journeys I’ve been writing to a penpal on conversationexchange.com, playing Duolingo, reviewing Anki flashcards, catching up with my e-mails and, um… playing a videogame called Undertale. I’m up to date with my Anki flashcards, my Duolingo tree is still gold, and I have now finished the main story in Undertale.
Work has been a little hectic recently, and during the lunch breaks I’ve been feeling quite exhausted. I haven’t even thought about opening a Danish textbook. Next week things should be back to normal, and I hope to steal away to a quiet place and get some reading / studying in.
During the evenings I’ve actually been doing some stuff to do with Danish – I was watching a tv cooking show about Thai food. That was really interesting, and I was surprised how much I could understand! I have also been watching “news and sport” with my wife. We pause it after the 15 minutes of news, and then I tell her what I understand of it and we have a quick discussion (mostly in English). I am slowly being able to understand a bit more of the news in Danish, but to be brutally honest the majority of it still goes way over my head.
Weekly Goal 2: Write at least 3 Danish entries on Lang-8.com
Not only have I achieved this goal, but I have successfully managed to write a Danish journal every day for the past 7 days (including today!). It has been really good for my confidence with Danish. I have wanted to write a daily lang-8 Danish entry for a long time now, and this is something I am incredibly proud of. Here’s a round up of what I’ve been writing about in Danish:
Monday the 21st of March: My Upcoming Danish test in May
Tuesday the 22nd of March: Mishearing “Brussels” as “Brazil” on Danish radio
Wednesday the 23nd of March: I am happy about having Easter Holidays off from work
Thursday the 24th of March: Danish friends making a tongue twister about Syrian people
Friday the 25th of March: Spending time with my wife’s family
Saturday the 26th of March: Videogames in Danish language
Sunday the 27th of March: Achieving a week of Danish journal entries on Lang-8
Weekly Goal 3: Doing a blog post on a Sunday
It is Sunday today, and I am writing this blog. I feel like I am back on track with this routine, and it feels great. I hope to consistently keep on track with writing a blog post every Sunday from now on.
My goals for the coming week are to:
- Complete 6 exercises from the Danish textbook ‘Ordet er Frit’
- Continue to write a daily Danish journal on Lang-8
- Watch the evening news in Danish and briefly discuss it with my wife every evening
It takes a lot of work to be consistent, but consistency is where the you really start to see results with learning a language. Do any of you have weekly language goals? If so, what are they?
Vi ses i næste uge! (See you next week)