If you're learning a new language, then you need to know that six villains are out to get you.
Yes, these evil characters will stop at nothing in their quest to prevent you ever becoming fluent in your new language.
But, who are they and how do they lure you into their seductive traps? And, most importantly, how do you stop them dead in their tracks?
Let's dive into Villain number four and vanquish her forever. After all, your language learning success depends on it.
Did you miss the other villains? You'll find them here:
Who Is The Comparison Villain?
The Comparison Villain is a nasty piece of work. She lurks in your head, just waiting to pounce on your fear of inadequacy.
Have you ever been in a language class with students who seem much better than you? Or stood by in a conversation while your friend prattles away, leaving you feeling worthless because you can't keep up?
It's not a pretty feeling, that's for sure. But that's the Comparison Villain hard at work, trying her best to sabotage your best efforts.
How Does She Work?
The Comparison Villain's entire mission is to make you feel so worthless that you'll throw in the towel on your language learning dreams. She'd far rather see you lounging in front of Netflix than improving your skills.
You know that uneasy feeling in your stomach when you compare yourself to someone else? Have you heard that little voice in your ear, insisting that they speak the language far better than you?
That's her, getting you to compare yourself with other people and feel all those horrible, negative emotions that come with a comparison.
Why Does She Get Away With It?
Now, you can always find someone further along the path than you.
But, what makes comparison so tricky to deal with is that it strikes at our core need for status.
When you have a friend who speaks a language better than you, their status in society appears to be elevated to a higher level because they're a better communicator. And, of course, if theirs is higher, yours feels lower.
The Comparison Villain is an expert in commando tactics. You don't even know it's her when that little voice murmurs thoughts like
“They know more words than you do.”
“Listen to that great pronunciation — you'll never be that good.”
It hurts like hell — unless you recognize the Comparison Villain's biggest weakness and sweep the rug from under her feet.
How Can You Defeat The Comparison Villain?
The thing is, this villain doesn't tell you the full story.
She doesn't mention that this person has been learning the language for longer than you have.
She ignores the fact that they have a friend or partner who speaks it and buries the thought that maybe they lived in that country for a few years.
In fact, there are all kinds of reasons why they might be more fluent than you are right at this moment. But none of them matters a jot!
When you're busy comparing yourself to others, you are blinded to the fact that your journey has nothing to do with them.
Forget comparison and know that it's really about you and the improvement you want in YOUR life when you learn a new language.
Vanquish The Villain Once And For All
To banish the Comparison Villain's nasty insinuations, you need to take control and keep things in perspective.
Flip your attitude 180 degrees and spin that villain right off your shoulder by thinking positively about the language learners around you. Here are a few things you can do.
- Take the spotlight off yourself and instead think “Isn't it wonderful that they've done so well in their language learning.”
- Use their prowess to motivate and inspire you to reach your own goals.
- Remember that this moment is one snapshot in time; what actually matters is progress, and how much you can improve.
So, take yourself out of situations where the Comparison Villain can get to you.
If you don't enjoy your language classes with others, try a method like StoryLearning and learn in your own world, at your own pace.
And remember, you can't banish comparison altogether. It is a natural part of life and language learning. But, you can manage your reactions — that's the one thing you always have control over.
So, whenever you feel the Comparison Villain at work, tell her where to go and focus on enjoying your own language learning journey instead.
And if all else fails…
And you want to avail yourself of the ultimate villain-busting weapon…
So you can learn your new language quickly, speak with confidence, and live your best life…
Then you should embrace the magic of the StoryLearning method.