Kick off 2019 by joining the January Babbel Challenge! Every Monday in January, we’re publishing an article to help you establish a healthy learning habit. By the end of the month, you will be on your way to reaching your language-learning goals.
This Week’s Challenge
Welcome to week 4 of the Babbel Challenge! While we’re still not quite at the end, now’s the time to start thinking about the future. That’s why this week’s challenge is to tackle smart goals. And by that, we mean SMART goals.
What is a SMART goal? It’s an acronym that means a goal should be the following:
- Specific — identify what exactly you want to accomplish (it should be more specific than “learn a new language”)
- Measurable — you should be able to easily see how much progress you’re making on your goal
- Achievable — there has to be some endpoint you can actually get to
- Realistic — you can be ambitious, but don’t set yourself up for disappointment
- Time-bound — to keep yourself on track, it’s best to pick a specific time-frame for your goal
Intuitively, this all makes sense, but when you’re setting goals for yourself it’s easy to forget some aspect of it. Nothing kills a goal faster than making it too loose or ambiguous. There are so many different goals you can set, but here’s a template to give you some ideas:
I’m learning ________! I plan to study __ days a week, __ minutes a day. My goal is to be able to __________ in __ month(s).
Keep in mind, this doesn’t have to be your end goal for learning. Once you reach one goal, you can always set another after that! Here are a few examples of goals you can set:
I’m learning Spanish! I plan to study 5 days a week, 20 minutes a day. My goal is to be able to order a Spanish meal in 1 month(s).
I’m learning French! I plan to study 3 days a week, 30 minutes a day. My goal is to be able to have a conversation in French in 3 month(s).
Just setting a goal isn’t the end of this challenge, however. You also need to find ways to make yourself accountable. This means you should set reminders on your phone. Print out your goal and put it somewhere that you’ll see it every day. Post about your goal on social media (and use the hashtag #BabbelChallenge), so you can socially pressure yourself into learning!
The perks of completing this week’s challenge include:
- Creating goals for yourself to follow even after the challenge has ended
- Holding yourself accountable to the goals you set
- Reminding yourself why you’re learning and what you’re working toward
- Breaking down language-learning into accomplishable pieces
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