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TOP Mistakes Korean Learners Should Avoid

Updated: Dec 19, 2023

안녕하세요 친구들 (friends), I'm Yamin and today let's dive into a topic that every language learner encounters - mistakes. Yes, my friends, I'm included too into making these sinful mistakes in Korean learning journey.

You all fall into this category if you are making one or all of the following mistakes below:


1) Fear of speaking the language

2) Fear of mispronouncing words

3) Fear of incorrect grammar placement

4) Procrastination

5) Trying too hard to be perfect

6) Fear of asking questions

We will learn why mistakes are your stepping stones and not setbacks. Here, notice making the very first mistake would lead to the following mistakes. If you don't speak it means you don't pronounce words loudly to your ears, which will not improve pronunciation, grammar and will lead you towards procrastination, eventually making you quit learning the language.

If you fear of speaking your learning language in front of the natives, that means you even hesitate to say "Ghamsahamnida (Thank you)" as in Korean or at worst ignore them, thinking they might start speaking in Korean with you and embarrass you if you can't speak Korean. Believe me it's not true. They will always appreciate and encourage you into learning their language.

Fear Not, Learn More. Mistakes are inevitable and more importantly valuable. Don't let the fear of making errors stop your progress. Challenge yourself a bit patiently and celebrate progress, not your desired or expected results.

Never compare yourself with other Korean learners whether beginner or advanced level. Stick to your own way and pace of learning, looking for progress by comparing yourself with your previous self. Then only you can actually improve.


How to actually tackle these mistakes?

Speak with native Koreans even if you have to speak Konglish (Korean and English) with them. They will be surprised even if you know one or two Korean words and if lucky, they might know English so you can communicate with them with Konglish at ease and ask for correction if required.

Just don't stop the conversation just because of lack of vocabulary. Keep the conversation on. Try to use vocabulary you know or learned recently. They will definitely correct pronunciation if wrong.

Mispronouncing words are part of the journey. Instead of shying away, practice those tricky sounds repeatedly after the native speaker corrects you. Remember, native speakers appreciate your effort more than perfection. Getting feedback from them is essential for you.

Grammar may be a maze, and you may become entangled in its complexities. Rejoice in the discovery of your errors, because each one is an opportunity to better understand the language structure. Seek clarity, and you'll be wiser for it.

Procrastination kills your motivation or interest in learning the language. It keeps you far away from even trying to learn the language even if it is memorizing one or two words per day.

Always try to learn the language in a fun way and engage in activities that holds your interest in learning the language like watching K-dramas, reading comics or webtoons in Korean or watch some Korean animated series on YouTube, such as "Learn Korean with Jadoo". It has both Korean and English subtitle at the same time, so would be easier to follow both.

You can also watch animated movies like "Seoul Station" or CGI animated short film such as "Shim Chung" with English subtitles. There's tone of these on YouTube. Simply search them. Believe me, this would motivate you in learning the language and keep you on track of your goal.

Perfection comes with time. There's no shortcut. So, please be patient my friends. As I already mentioned, only focus on your own progress not perfection.

Also, don't compare your progress with others' progress. Everyone has different skills, style or approach of learning a language. Set your own goal and kindly follow it with great patience. If you focus on perfection, you would be making more mistakes unknowingly. It should never be a goal.

It's not important to learn 50 or 100 or 1000 words in one or two days. Remember you cannot build a building in one day without building the pillars and other small elements.

Even if you learn one or two words in one day, that's completely ok, but use those learnt words in a sentence as in Konglish like I used to do when I was a complete beginner.

It does not have to be a fully Korean sentence. For instance, "I drink water", here if you only know the Korean word for water, that's it, form sentences with it. As shown in the above example, you can say it in konglish like "I 물 (moorl) drink."

Questions may appear due to confusion in many things in your language learning journey. Ask as many questions as you want. Torture the teacher with questions if it is needed. You need to clarify all your doubts by 100%. Don't let any opportunity go out of the hand. Opportunity comes with luck and time and may not come again.

Believe me, I've experienced this and don't want you all to do the same thing. Think about the time value. Time and tide waits for none. So, you should not take time for granted, if you quickly want to be good at Korean, clearing away a sea of doubts from your mind.

Asking more questions would not cost you extra money. Whatever comes in your mind at the moment, never hesitate to ask or at least note down the questions.


Lastly, keep learning from your mistakes. Don't be afraid to make mistakes. They are your milestones in learning journey. Share your language blunders in the comments below if you made one.

Till then, keep learning everyone, and let's be supportive of each other in this platform. See you next time (다음에 봐요).

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