Learning a new language can be very hard, but you can make it easier for yourself by NOT creating more barriers that will hinder your progress. These tips (in no particular order) should help to make your learning process a lot smoother, and make learning Persian fun!
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1. STOP translating!
Translating should only be something you need to do in the very early stages of learning Persian.
Once you have a basic grasp of vocabulary, you should stop thinking in your native language and trying to translate everything, as this slows your progress down, and limits your focus!
When someone says something, concentrate on the Persian words you DO know, and build your understanding from there.
2. DON’T be afraid to make mistakes!
Actually, fear can become a huge barrier, which makes it difficult to progress. If you know the rules of grammar, but struggle to hold a conversation, that doesn’t mean you should avoid talking in Persian!
Please STOP thinking about how people might react, and what they’ll say. Usually, everyone makes mistakes, and then they learn from them. that is how you get better at it!
3. STOP negative self-talk!
Having a negative attitude doesn’t help improve your Persian learning, it makes it worse. If you find you’re saying negative things to yourself such as:
“Oww, why do I always get it wrong? I’m so stupid.”
“I always make mistakes and I’ll never get better at it.”
“I don’t know what to say, it’s so hard to speak Persian.”
This needs to change! Try to turn them into positive statements and you can rephrase them to show positivity. Instead of saying “I’ll never get better at this”, you should say “I’m going to keep trying and I’ll get better at it so soon.”
Instead of saying “Sorry, I don’t speak Persian, I can’t understand you”, say “Sorry, I’m still learning how to speak Persian, so could you speak a bit slower please?”
Positivity helps you to learn Persian much quicker!
4. STOP being nervous!
Speak in Persian every time you have the opportunity. If you think about speaking, then you’ll just feel even more nervous, Just put yourself out there, and speak Persian!
The more you speak Persian, the more confident and comfortable you will feel, and the quicker you will learn how to communicate in Persian properly!
You may need to step out of your comfort zone a little bit, but the more you speak in Persian, the more you will begin to feel relaxed.
5. Please STOP taking it personally when people don’t understand you!
At some point, you will meet some person who, no matter how hard you try, just can’t understand you. Maybe this happens all the time.
Due to the large number of Persian speakers in Iran, there is a wide range of accents, some of which, can be hard to understand!
Eliminating your own language from your accent completely is extremely difficult, so don’t be too hard on yourself!
6. STOP apologizing!
No one knows everything – so don’t apologize for not speaking Persian perfectly! You’re still learning, everything takes time.
The more you speak Persian and practice your newfound skills, the more you will improve. Even native Persian speakers didn’t learn how to speak in a few months!
The main thing is that you are trying, most people will understand and encourage you and appreciate that. So just relax, and start talking!
7. DON’T just learn in class!
Learning in a classroom environment is great because you get to ask questions, pick your teacher’s brain, and share ideas with classmates, but you also need to implement the Persian language into your daily life and communicate with people in Persian at every opportunity you get.
If you don’t practice speaking Persian outside the classroom, then your ability to progress will remain very limited. This is one of the most important things you have to remember.
It is the best way to learn Persian, and will definitely influence how quickly you improve!
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8. DON’T give up!
At first, it always seems hard when you’re learning something new, but if you keep at it, it will become easier and easier!
You have to keep practicing Persian if you want to get better, otherwise, it’ll get harder to improve.
Actually, professional athletes have to do the same, they train hard all the time because if they didn’t, their skills would just get worse!
9. STOP worrying!
Don’t waste a chance to speak Persian because you’re worried about whether they will understand you or not. Be confident, and please have an ‘I can do it’ attitude.
10. STOP comparing yourself to other Persian speakers!
No matter what level of Persian you are on, you worked hard to get there. Be proud of what you have achieved.
Everybody is different, some people learn languages more easily than others, and some people spend more time working to improve their Persian. Just because your friend is learning faster than you, doesn’t mean you’re not good at learning Persian!
11. Please STOP using outdated, inefficient methods!
Grammar-translation methods and memorization of rules have been standard practice for a very long time, but they’re probably not the most effective ways to learn the language.
Some students study Persian for many years and know all the rules of grammar and sentence structures, but still struggle to communicate properly and hold a conversation in Persian.
In fact, it is important to have a significant amount of time focusing on conversational, functional language use, and learn in context through interaction with other people!
12. DON’T work too hard on one skill and neglect the other skills!
You should concentrate on improving your speaking skills, but also dedicate a suitable amount of time practicing your reading, writing, and your listening skills. For more progress, You shouldn’t underestimate the benefits all these skills have on each other!
13. STOP spending too much time studying!
If you sit in front of a book or screen for hours, going over the same rules and flashcards, again and again, it won’t make you learn Persian any faster!
You should have short study periods of up to 30 minutes, then spend a generous amount of your available time putting the language skills you’ve learned, into practice.
It’s okay to study for up to thirty minutes, take a break, then go back to studying if you really need to, but studying for a long period of time, without taking a break, is quite exhausting for your brain!
14. STOP thinking of learning Persian as a chore!
Students sometimes associate study with something that is unpleasant, which turns it into ‘boring homework’, and ‘boring exercises’.
Even if they realize that learning Persian is important, they may not be self-motivated enough to do it all the time! Actually, it needs to be something you want to do, not have to do. Make it interesting and enjoyable so you have fun when you’re learning.
- If you’re walking down the street, build simple Persian sentences in your head about the things you see around you
- Learn a new Persian word each day and try to use it in conversation
- Watch a funny Persian video on the internet and tell someone what it’s about
- Read an article about your favorite topic (or something else that interests you)
- Communicate with some people on a discussion forum
Soon you will stop thinking of boring classes, difficult grammar rules, or lengthy homework, instead, you’ll be thinking about a funny Iranian TV show, your favorite topic, or interesting conversations with different people, in Persian!
Only one kind of person would do these sorts of things, the kind of person who likes and enjoys them! If you want to learn how to speak Persian well, you have to be that person. We have a question, have you ever heard of anyone who became successful by doing something they hated?
15. DON’T disregard the culture!
For example, the way an average, ordinary person interacts with other people in his/her community. All cultures and small communities have different gestures, intonation, slang idioms, proximity, interjections, fillers, and shortcuts!
If you are focusing on learning the tongue of a certain community then it would be the best way to integrate with them, and learn from them!