How do you keep your motivation?

I am currently at B1 level at my target language Englsih.
I am learning it on and off for years and I can’t keep my motivation alive.
How do you guys keep learning? What can I do to consistently learning?

One thing that made me stay for learning for a while is Writing Exchange,
I geet excited about reading comments from people who correct my writing.
However, I need other motivation for intensive input not output.

Any thought is appreciated.

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i drink coffee :slight_smile:


Well, i start consistently learn english only few weeks because i know that my english is bad. But even before, when i dont learn language active i still passive absorb it from many content on youtube that i interested in. As much as i understand language learning procces, you need stay interested in this language and in content that this language can offer to you. And a few days ago i try to speak on english while recording that on camera, but it was so awful that give me motivation to improve myself as much as i can.

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Make it a habit. Find something that interests you and that you can do everyday. Youtube is a good source for all sorts of content. Once you find a channel you like and understand enough of, you are likely to binge it even you are motivated to watch one or 2 short videos. More channels you find, more likely you are to keep on watching. Also algorithms will feed you more of the same kind of content. I split my youtube account and only watch Spanish content on one. It doesn’t have to be only youtube. You could find news in English or find bloggers in English.


You’re correct that motivation is important.

By all means find content you enjoy or find interesting. With LingQ you can read “over your head” so you’re not limited to graded readers (though those can be good too).

In French I jumped almost immediately to fiction like “The Little Prince,” the first Harry Potter book and then Hemingway’s “The Sun Also Rises.” (I also read various LingQ lessons.)

Maybe it would have been more efficient to stick with material more at my level. But I wanted to read books I wanted to read!

I decided to learn French because I love French music and the sound of the language. I’m now discovering more French culture and loving that too. I’m always in touch with my love for French.

Why do you want to learn English? What do you love about English? I’m not expecting answers – just suggesting you get in touch with whatever motivated you originally.

I also look for the ways I’m improving and when I notice improvements, I pat myself on the back.


I second the comments from Jessei.

You’re learning English for a reason, which is to understand and maybe to communicate. You will find it easier once you start consuming audio that you understand, either well, or not so well. Native podcasts and videos might be too high level, but there’s loads of podcasts for learners available on Spotify, Google Podcasts etc.

The idea is to listen to something on a subject that you enjoy, so you start to forget that you are learning. Of course it’s also good to do some focussed lesrning e.g. analyse some text, research a phrase.

Podcasts have taught me that France was roughly divided north south, with the north speaking a germanic influenced latin dialect, and the south speaking a latin dialect more like Spanish and Italian, but the northern language won. That is why French is so different from Spanish, Italian and Catalan. There is so much to learn.


I don’t keep learning. I have the same problem as you: I’m at B1 in German and I have reached what people call the “intermediate plateau” - it’s really hard to stay motivated at this level because progress seems very slow. So I go through times like this when I’m super motivated, and other times when I’m not motivated at all.

Also, with Spanish, I am at A2, and I lack motivation there because reading at this level is so much harder than it is in German, so I tend to spend more time on German than Spanish.

I just found LingQ four weeks ago, and I’m hoping its methods will keep me motivated longer than other systems have. I really like the fact that I can input any videos, audio, and ebooks into LingQ, and I’m hoping that bringing stuff into LingQ that I really enjoy will help me a lot. So far, it’s working. The system here allows me to test myself really easily with its flashcard system, and I love that all I have to do while reading on the site is to mark words I don’t know. It’s so simple yet it seems so effective - I’ve already learned 128 new German words in four weeks, which I think is great.

Maybe you already know and practice the following, but I think the best thing to do is to really search for stuff you already love in your native language, and find a translation of that same content in your target language, then find a way to import that into LingQ. When you’re reading, watching, and listening to stuff you already know and love, it’s easier to stay motivated.

Good luck!


I realize you asked for suggestions on input. However, I would like to mention that ChatGPT 4 provides great critiques of my writing, as well as answers questions about French.

ChatGPT 4 is $20/month. ChatGPT 3.5 is free, though it’s not as strong.


I ditched the tips from other polyglots and stopped watching their videos a while ago only to focus on what I enjoy.

I have been learning Korean for 8 years and my main goals are to read novels and watch movies in this language because I have a deep passion for Korean literature and cinema. My speaking skills are lagging behind. I know it, but I don’t care.


My motivation for learning languages is usually a plan to go visit the country where that language is spoken. For English, that isn’t really necessary, as it is used everywhere anyway. Motivation will always be going up and down. That seems normal to me.
I’m learning Ukrainian at the moment. The 11th language I’m seriously studying. I dabbled a bit with other languages along the way, to get an idea how they are.
I did 1 lesson of Ukrainian in the morning, one in the afternoon on Duolingo for several months. That’s OK to keep it somewhat active, but not to progress. So I enrolled in an evening course in my city. 3.5 hours on Monday evening. Then I taught my own language on for a few weeks, and now I have access to a Ukrainian basic and Conversational there. In the past I did Hindi, Swahili, Mandarin, Portuguese, russian and Ukrainian on that platform. Most of those languages just out of interest. I was focusing on russian in that period. I find it very difficult to learn both russian and Ukrainian at the same time, so in a way I’m now trying to forget russian somehow. It will most likely still come in handy when I will go visit Ukraine.
One thing that helps me a lot is to stay motivated and interested. Both viewing and interacting in the chats and streaming myself. It helps to become part of a community, where the language is used. Another app that I use is Tandem. There you can speak directly with people who also want to practice your target language. After a while you will find some people there that are supportive or that you can support.

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I quite understand.

Last summer and fall I really pushed myself hard to talk to native French tutors. (Not helped by the unreliable tutor software on LingQ.) But it was just too much stress handling vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation in front of a stranger on a Zoom call. There were some deaths in the family too.

I decided to stop pushing myself and I feel ever so much better. I enjoy my French studies, I am making progress, and for now I’m happy to start on output by writing to ChatGPT. I will get to France able to converse with the natives, but I will take my time for that.


The intermediate plateau is a killer for sure. I didn’t think I would ever lose motivation, but that’s what’s been wrecking it for me. I’ve been feeling like I’m not making progress, and the studying has gotten stale and tedious. I had to just cut way back for a few months to just kind of a maintenance level, and focus solely on what I could mentally handle and enjoy. I took some time for self-reflection and rest, and changed my goals a lot. I can be really hard on myself, and it’s easy to compare myself to others who I feel like are moving a lot faster than me.

Anyways, I think a break from the 4-6 hour/day hardcore schedule I’d imposed on myself, plus a shift to focus on other aspects of the language I’d been neglecting (for me, that’s kanji), has helped a lot, I think.


Motivation is a tricky one. How many of your other hobbies have been lifelong ones? If any, how did you maintain them? I know i’ve had several phases where my interests and perspectives have changed. The end of this phase unfortunately is really reaching an arbitrary goal, giving up or death.

I have worked over the 150+ introduction to Finnish lessons in the library. Added 20,000 odd words over a year and a half. Since creating the video tools and turning on auto-lingq i’ve managed to LingQ 35,000 new words in a few weeks. In a year that number could be a million. I believe efficiency and automation is what will continue to keep me on task even on the worst days.

Being able to sit on the couch and have Finnish subtitles over English audio or dual subtitled Finnish Audio has been game changing for me

  1. Habit
  2. Find interesting content
  1. Good strategy perhaps. Instead of jumping from author to author. Every author has a different writing style and vocabury range. So It is better to stick to one author and read some of his books. It is called “Narrow reading”. Same with listening. Do not jump from TV show to another. Just stick to one show and watch all its seasons. You get used to the pronunciation of the characters and their way of speaking.
  2. Use LingQ regularly for reading since it allows you to look up words quickly and track them in different context so you know whether you have acquired them or not. It is a great motivation to see that you are learning new words and remembering them.
  3. Use different devices for reading, perhaps, read a physical book then switch on to ereader etc.
    (Just watch Steve Kaufmanns latest video regarding this point).
  4. Use dead time, for example, load something on your iphone/mobile to listen to.
  5. Read the book on LingQ by looking up words then read the same book extensively without looking up words (read the book twice).
  6. Stick to reading contemporary/modern authors. Focus on your interests.

I have practiced some of these startegies without losing my mtivation. They have worked.


motivation is something that is eternal which I thick can’t be maintained by other’s point of views it is that kind of feeling that arises from one’s own situations , when one Truly seeks something from his/her internal a kind of motivation and sense of willingness arises that pushes him/her to be self motivated in each and every aspect of life either it is learning a language , physics complex equations or mathematics he/she will definitely conquer what they were striving to . that’s all from my side hope so that will contributes a little bit towards your query . Thanks


I really haven’t struggled with motivation, but potentially for some people it might be impossible goals (not saying this is your case…you’ll have to be the judge).

To this point…language learning takes a lot of time. I think many people feel they should be able to get to fluent or above within a few months, or a year or two years. For most people who are working or have family, it will likely be years, unless you have a lot of time to commit.

For myself, I did think initially (and for many months), that I was always just at the threshold of “getting it”. However, I’ve come to know that it’s going to take however long it takes, and I’m just going to enjoy the process of learning. I do make it “fun” for myself…all the content I read or watch are things that I find interesting. I do find a lot of things interesting so it does make it easy. However, I’m not content with searching through the LingQ library…you really need to find things on your own, imo. Search sources of content that provide a lot of good content…favorite podcasts, or youtube channels, or authors.

Certain goals may be difficult to attain…I want to be an 20,000 known words by X date. That’s difficult to measure. A better goal would be “I’m going to read 1,000,000 words this year (or whatever time frame).” That’s one that can be easily measured and accomplished.

For myself I don’t set these goals, but I know others do.

tldr: Find content you enjoy, enjoy the process of consuming that content and learning, enjoy the process of outputting (this I struggle with), set measurable goals, don’t go overboard and burnout


“Motivation is something that is internal”

That is very true. Language learning is a marathon, not a 100m sprint. You need to have self belief that you can succeed, determination to carry on even when you feel demotivated, and the will to work hard. My French is progressing quite nicely, albeit slowly, despite periods of frustration, and that has helped me with German. Once you succeed with one language, you know you can succeed with a second if you work hard enough. Having succeeded in some other discipline, such as ice skating, or judo, can I’m sure also help. Basically you need to be hungry for success.


Recently I’ve been thinking about Simon Sinek’s idea that “finding your why” is hyper important. In connection with that I am reading through the transcript to a video in German. The subtitle translates to “7 Things that unconsciously destroy motivation.”

The first question this guy claims you need to answer is: “Warum tust du was du tust?” Why do you do what you do? Much like Simon Sinek: identify your why.

As I have been pondering this idea and observing the results, I do seem to see that it is one key to motivation. It helps me to ask myself: why do I want to achieve my goal? The brain is very good at coming up with answers, and some of them are often helpful. My observation is that successful people ask good questions that will lead them to the answers they are looking for.


Thank you for your advice.
I am not against LingQ but I am struggling to find a good YouTubers who I like and put closed captions on their videos.
I feel demotivated every time I find that I cannot import the videos I like into LingQ.
How do you deal with that?

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