I’m writing this because I think a lot of people get disheartened when they put in a long study session every once in a while and still can’t read the book they wanted to or watch and comprehend the movie they’ve been looking forward to without subtitles. When you’re trying to assimilate an entire language into your mind, it’s obviously going to take a while. However, you can still see motivating progress but you must learn how to stretch out how you perceive your study time quite a bit.

+ If you want to look at it from a calendar-like perspective. (only if you’re studying every single day)

Don’t look for progress after a day, week, or even a month of studying. Start looking at progress quarterly.
Every three months, go back to that book or show you were looking forward to and rewatch it. Do you understand more now? You should be able to after 3 months of diligent study. Not textbook study, real study.

Pick apart real  dialogs in your foreign language and devour the words and phrases. Then reread from your study material again and put it together in your mind. Throw those items in a spaced repetition system program like Anki to make sure you don’t forget them if you so desire.

+If you want to look at it from a vocabulary-like perspective. (helpful for people who don’t study everyday like the cool kids)

Don’t hope to see progress after you knock down a 100 word vocabulary list. Look at your progress after you’ve knocked down 1000 words/phrases/sentences. You need these large numbers before you start regularly seeing the words you’ve worked so hard to accumulate in daily texts/media. 1000 language items may seem daunting but we’re talking about an entire language here. You’ve got to make the commitment or what are you even doing?

If you want to tie it back to checking your progress quarterly, this is a little over 11 language items a day plus reviews and enjoying other things in the language for fun.

As for me, I stay at a pace of around 10 new items a day plus review and immersion. This is a fairly easy pace to stick to. If you are super motivated, you could easily do more than this a day and see results much faster.

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