The power of habits and daily action

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AndyMeg
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The power of habits and daily action

Postby AndyMeg » Sun Mar 19, 2017 3:13 am

I just want to rescue a post from the old HTLAL forum that helped me a lot:

30 days: How to improve self-discipline
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blaurebell
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby blaurebell » Sun Mar 19, 2017 6:44 am

I wholeheartedly agree with emk's post. The only way to really make continuous progress on a huge project like learning a language is to turn it into a daily study routine. There have been studies that it takes 66 days to form a new habit so if you manage to get through a bit more than half of Assimil it's likely that you get through the whole course and keep doing some kind of language learning every day even afterwards. And after a year it has become such a part of you that it's difficult to break away from it actually. We all know how difficult it is to get rid of bad habits! Interested in breaking a habit? Here is some more on that, it's less obvious than developing a good habit apparently. So, the longer you do something, the more it becomes a habit and breaking habits is difficult! And there we have the simplified explanation for serial language learning and polyglots learning more languages than they can maintain :D

That said, I'm actually much more of a 3 month challenge person than a habit person, since I get obsessed with things for a while and then lose interest. I tend to do it when work is slow - in winter when it rains too much to take pictures and in the height of summer when we're overrun by tourists and all pictures turn into "another crowd". So, during that time I try to do as much as possible and try to break through the understanding barrier with a new language. Once I break through that, the rest is just fun and games for me and can be done without any strain or daily lessons. Only works for easy languages though - with a difficult language I burn out before breaking the comprehension barrier. I do have maintenance habits though: watching an episode of a series while I have lunch, reading books in the morning and before going to bed. I just make sure to put enough TL content in that time and it works reasonably well. I still need to adjust my habits to make sure I maintain all of my languages and not just my favourite one at the moment.
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DaveBee
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby DaveBee » Sun Mar 19, 2017 7:04 am

I've just started Coursera's Learning how to Learn Course (it was mentioned on a thread here). Procrastination is today's topic! :-)
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blaurebell
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby blaurebell » Sun Mar 19, 2017 8:59 am

DaveBee wrote:I've just started Coursera's Learning how to Learn Course (it was mentioned on a thread here). Procrastination is today's topic!


It looks like a good course, but I'm sure that after 1 1/2 bachelor degrees and a master degree I probably know most of this already. Reading about learning strategies and productivity was always a huge time-sink for me, a really silly form of procrastination :lol:

Btw, I got a distinction in my masters degree through exploiting my own procrastination habits: Aim to do the most difficult task, procrastinate with the easiest or most enjoyable task. Don't allow yourself to procrastinate with things that are really pointless, like Facebook or reading the news in L1. This way even your procrastination and relaxation time is productive. For language learning I find procrastinating by watching L2 TV really effective or doing anything with a stronger target language. These days while studying Russian I procrastinate with French mostly, TV, radio, reading comics, novels. It's just fun. I'm getting 1-3h of French a day just because some of my Russian drills are less than enjoyable! Ironically I tend to get much less done when I don't procrastinate and enjoy everything I have to do.

The best productivity tip I have is to reduce multitasking to moments when you're doing mindless tasks. I listen to audiobooks or TL radio while cooking, folding laundry or doing similar chores. With more involved tasks I concentrate on one task only. It just takes the brain too much time to switch from one activity to the next in quick succession. Phone, facebook and any distractions are off when I'm reading or studying.
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: 11 / 100 Дэвид Эддингс - В поисках камня
: 13889 / 35000 LWT Known

: 17 / 55 FSI Spanish Basic
: 90 / 116 GdUdE B

AndyMeg
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby AndyMeg » Sun Mar 19, 2017 4:58 pm

DaveBee wrote:I've just started Coursera's Learning how to Learn Course (it was mentioned on a thread here). Procrastination is today's topic! :-)


I took that course about two years ago, but I'm retaking it to review the main ideas. It is a really good course on learning! :mrgreen:
1 x
: 19 / 267 Memrise's TTMIK course :

: 2 / 283 Memrise's Vocabulary course :

: 3 / 16 내일 그대와 double 20-minutes segments :

: 1 / 1000 k-drama phrases/sentences :

: 0 / 20 slow k-songs :

DaveBee
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Location: UK
Languages: English (native). French (studying).
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby DaveBee » Sun Mar 19, 2017 5:08 pm

AndyMeg wrote:
DaveBee wrote:I've just started Coursera's Learning how to Learn Course (it was mentioned on a thread here). Procrastination is today's topic! :-)


I took that course about two years ago, but I'm retaking it to review the main ideas. It is a really good course on learning! :mrgreen:
I read the Study strategies to boost learning [PDF] article yesterday (from the optional further reading page). I kept thinking: "Assimil/Duolingo do that!" :-)
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gekko
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Re: The power of habits and daily action

Postby gekko » Sun Mar 19, 2017 11:20 pm

That thread is a good read. It is something I'm struggling with as a language learner. It also reminds me of a quote/saying I've come across before. Something about how it's better to rely on discipline than motivation, since motivation is something that comes and goes. Also, that Coursera course looks interesting! I have also signed up for it.
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