Even before you think about which materials to study, or your method for learning German, you need to take a step back and understand your underlying reason for wanting to speak German. This is your Big Why.
My “Big Why” is an unquantifiable passion for languages. It isn’t something measurable like “So I can speak to X number of people in the world”, but it has to do with enriching my life with friendships and experiences, which you can’t really measure.
Here are some reasons for learning German that could be your Big Why:
- To have conversations with German speaking family members
- To find a job in a German company (Germany is one of the biggest economies in the world)
- To speak with natives as you travel in the heart of Europe
- To read the classics of German literature
- To get an inside view of German culture
In fact, German has a lot of things going for it that make it considerably easier than many other languages. When learning German, the trick is to focus on those parts of German that are easy to pick up. Alongside that, you can find hacks to help you get around the parts that are perceived as more difficult.
German is an easy language to learn because it has:
- No tones, as there are in Chinese or Thai
- No liaisons between words, as there are in French
- Many of the same letters as English, unlike Japanese or Korean
- No postposition or preposition suffixes, like in Hungarian or Turkish
- No strings of difficult-to-pronounce consonants like in Czech.