Surviving The Plateau

2012CLC 162

There comes a time in every serious second language-learner’s life when their new way of communicating, that cool and useful tool, they’re so excited about using seems to turn on them. The journey started smooth enough; you were enjoying your new language, getting the hang of it and progressing by leaps and bounds. You were well on your way to language study nirvana: fluency. But now you’ve hit rocky terrain. Progress is slowing down, and frustration setting in. Sound familiar?

Welcome, my friend, to the plateau. The Plateau is not just a trendy Montreal area between Sherbrooke and Laurier metros with chic but overpriced apartments but also by definition ‘to reach a state of little or no change after a time of activity or progress’. It’s something most second language learners experience at some stage but few are aware of and don’t realize it’s a normal part of the process. So instead of thinking you’re to blame for not progressing or giving up entirely, give yourself a break! Weather the storm and remember all things must pass, and a breakthrough is on the horizon. In the meantime, if you’re looking for ideas of how to get past this phase, the internet can help you out.



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