After a long day of work, taking care of family, spending time with friends, and doing other hobbies that you like, sometimes learning a language can start to feel like a chore. Even if learning Spanish is something you want to master, it’s easy to get to a place where you feel tired, unmotivated or even frustrated. Luckily, Deidre Dattoli presented a 3-step mindfulness exercise that you can use to get yourself mentally prepared to practice Spanish. Keep reading!
Step 1- Turn off autopilot
According to Diedre, it’s a good idea to focus on your breathing and become fully aware of where you are and what you’re doing. Sit on a comfortable surface where you feel safe. Notice the way your environment looks and feels around you, then close your eyes. Flip your phone upside down, and simply be present. Let your thoughts come and go freely without focusing on them too hard.
Step 2- Pay attention to your breathing
Ground yourself by paying attention to your breathing pattern. Deidre says it’s important to only pay attention to your breathing for about 90 seconds. Notice your chest rise and fall, and feel your shoulders relax. Ask yourself if you’re still tense, and relax those muscles.
Step 3- Spread your awareness outward
Refocus on the rest of your body, then slowly take a look at your surroundings. Do they look a little different now, a little calmer? Only look at what is physically next to you. Then, use this time to think about what you’d like to do. Once you’ve calmed down, you’re better able to think about achievable goals that you can set for yourself.
Mindfulness for language learning
Mindfulness isn’t just for moments of severe anxiety, and you don’t have to wait until you’re about to do something big to make use of this mindfulness exercise. Starting off each session with a little bit of mindfulness will make you more present, more motivated and more engaged in what you’re learning. If you’re distracted, you’re less likely to retain what you’ve learned. Language learning should be fun, and having a clear mind will make it much more enjoyable.