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How to Improve your Korean in 2023


There are a ton of ways to Improve your Korean. The main way to improve your Korean overall is to be consistent with your studies. But not only that knowing how & what to study.



SET SUSTAINABLE & MEASURABLE SYSTEMS


When thinking about how you want to improve, don’t JUST give yourself a super broad plain goal. For example: become Intermediate. Instead try to create something that is measurable and doable on a everyday basis.


A system, unlike a goal, Is something you do on a daily basis to achieve a goal. If you’re goal is to “improve vocabulary” then your system could be: study 15 words a day. If your goal is to “reach Intermediate level” then your system may be: learn 3 intermediate grammar each week. If you’re goal is to “improve listening”, your system might be: listen to a podcast episode each day.


Systems help you stay consistent and develop discipline. If you find it hard to create your own system, start out with a goal you’d like to achieve. Then think about the steps it will take to get to that goal and the things you can do to reach that goal. I would say at least 1-3 systems would be good to have. Make sure they are small and something you can upkeep for a long period of time.



CREATE A STUDY ROUTINE (around systems)


Now that you have your goal and systems worked out the next step us to fit it into your schedule. Go ahead and take a look at your daily schedule - write out everything you normally do in a day or a week first. Then find days and times in your schedule that you could squeeze in those study sessions.



PREPARE FOR DISAPPOINTMENT (you may not see results for a long time)


I read atomic habits early this year in 2022 and while I don’t remember everything, I do remember hearing about this. I’ll tell you what I got from that book. There’s a long stretch of nothingness - you not seeing results. It’s called the “valley of disappointment”. Prepare yourself for this. Some people can see results fast, but for you It could take 2-3x as long or more!


Your effort is never wasted. Imagine your effort like a bucket that is slowly being filled up over time - with each study session it fills up more and more. Your effort adds, even if you haven’t studied in a while, that previous effort you put in was not wasted. When that metaphorical bucket begins to “overflow” that’s when you’ll see the results. It will be like it happened overnight, but really it is just the culmination of all your efforts.


No one knows when that will happen of course. This progress you make is so incredibly slow and incremental that no human could see it with their eyes, which is why people give up so soon. Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.


Remember, the only way you can fail is if you give up. If you never give up, you will never fail! I promise you that.



DEVELOP A BETTER MINDSET


Comparing yourself to others, beating yourself up for missing one study session, or trying to learn in a super limited amount of time - these things only lead to unnecessary stress.


When you find yourself comparing to others, stop yourself. And replace that thought with something more positive. For example, they are good at Korean, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not. Their ability to speak Korean takes nothing away from me. I mean for all you know that person has been studying for 5 years longer than you, how can you possibly compare yourself to that?!


A big thing is trying to learn Korean in a super limited amount of time. If you don’t actually have a valid reason for doing it - why?! It just stresses you out. You are not going to be fluent in a year, 2 years, 3 years… An entire language cannot be learned in such a short time. Relax! You have all the time in the world to be great at it. Nor do you need to know every single sliver of information to speak fluently or be considered fluent.



FIND RESOURCES THAT WORK FOR YOU (Do I need to buy textbooks?)


Of course not. You don’t need textbooks to study Korean. That being said, textbooks make it easier and less time-consuming to learn by organizing all the important information in one place in a, usually, easily understandable manner. I have books that I have made, but there are also other Korean textbooks that I would recommend to you. If interested I do have a link in the bio with my recommendations.


Free resources are everywhere and it has never been easier to study Korean at home with no books. I recently made a pdf masterlist of different resources and I’ll leave a link to it in my story (It will be saved under my story highlight called “tips”). I also have a quizlet vocabulary masterlist linked in my bio.


But youtube, google, naver dictionary, and papago will be your saviors. Google and youtube for searching for lessons, practices, and advice.


Another good resource is my blog : KoreanStudyJunkie.com/blog. I have lots of lessons there and more being added every week.



DO I HAVE TO TAKE CLASSES OR GET A TUTOR?


My answer is absolutely not. I never had a teacher myself, and I'm proof that it's possible to learn by yourself. I started young at 14 years old, so at the time I could not afford to pay for any lessons even if I wanted to. There are certain people that I think would benefit the most from taking lessons from a teacher or class - if you can afford it.



TYPE 1: A person who is busy, because of work, school, or family commitments. This I feel is pretty obvious, but super busy people have a hard time fitting in the necessary time to study, because of a lack of time and/or energy. By having just 1 scheduled lesson a week, which is flexible and can be adjusted around your busy schedule enables you to keep making progress and be consistent without having to think and plan too much on your own.


Not only that but a 1 on 1 lesson can be better than a group class, because it is tailored for you and your needs, so it becomes even more efficient. It's a worthwhile investment to find a affordable teacher or class if you find it hard to study as you need.


When you are self-studying you have to do it all yourself, which isn't impossible but it is time consuming. The main problem with self-studying these days is not that there is a lack of information or resources (link to ultimate resource guide) but that there is an overwhelming amount.


Whereas when you have a teacher they more or less compile all the information for you and present in a summarized and hopefully easier to understand fashion. That goes for online lessons on YouTube and Instagram as well - the people who make them gather the information for you and present it in a summarized form.



TYPE 2: A person who doesn't know what to study or wants organization. Lessons provide you with more of a guideline than if it was just you on your own. Group classes may be better in this case, because most of them follow alongside a textbook of some sort.


Finding a tutor or teacher may work better if you'd rather learn Individually with more personalized criteria. I offer 1 on 1 tutoring. I’ll show you some testimonials/reviews from some of my current/past students.



Want to take lessons or classes with me? The sign-up is linked here! Currently only 30-45 minute lessons are available however.


Details:

  • meet 1-2x a week

  • classes hosted on instagram via calls/messaging

  • any timezone welcome

  • any level welcome


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