Most people in the English speaking world are monolingual in that they only speak one language - English. This means that we often look at those who speak more than one language as some sort of oddity who we cannot possibly aspire to be like. This attitude gets us nowhere and is, in fact, based on a whole host of unfounded myths.

The first thing that most people say when they are trying to defend their lack of a second language is that they are 'rubbish at languages'. When you quiz them on this they usually cite doing badly at languages at school as the evidence for this conclusion. Yet, the one thing that nearly all the 'polyglots' (people who speak more than two languages) you can find all over the internet have in common is that they were dreadful at learning languages at school. If they were 'genetically' better than you at learning a language they'd surely have done amazingly in their languages at school. Yet they didn't. They learnt them as adults. This smashes another myth that only children can learn languages. If that was true I wouldn't have been able to learn anything other than German or French as those are the only languages I did at school and I loathed French to the point where I quit it as soon as possible aged 13. I've also, again like most online polyglots, never lived outside of my home country so you can ditch the 'you have to live abroad' excuse straight away.

The genetic argument for some people being better at language learning than others is smashed into the ground when you realise that over half the world's population, and nearly 90% of people in some countries like Holland and Denmark, speak two languages fluently. Language learning is not some rare or unusual talent in most of the world. Instead, being multilingual is just seen as the norm and people routinely learn languages quickly and effectively on their own outside of a classroom setting. We are the rarity here and that needs to change!

Lots of people also have the idea that language learning is 'boring'. This has presumably come from their school experiences. Unfortunately, at the risk of being controversial, I would have to agree with the fact that the way that languages are taught in most schools is boring. The disproportionate emphasis on reading, writing and grammar turns off huge numbers of students and leaves the legacy of making most adults in the English speaking world think that languages are boring. I understand that this is a result of teachers trying their best with huge classes and teaching towards exams which focus on reading and writing but it undoubtedly leaves a negative taste in too many mouths. However, if you learn in the creative and fun ways that I've suggested all over the rest of this site you will be amazed by how much you can learn without picking up a single grammar based textbook!

Finally, the worst excuse of all is that you've 'tried' language learning already as an adult at classes or online but have 'got nowhere'. If this one applies for you I implore you to explore the rest of the site and, in particular, the section on habit formation and patience. The reality is that language learning courses are only as good as the persistent attitude of the participant. I have never met anyone who has learnt a language through only attending lessons once a week. It is the small, daily practice sessions that add up over time in language learning.

Languages are great fun! Ditch the excuses and Kick Start your language learning journey today by subscribing to my YouTube channel and getting started on the free 10 week course! You won't regret it!