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Learning English VS Learning Languages

This may sound like a weird topic, but I think it’s a very interesting idea.

(In case anyone didn’t know, “VS” is short for “verses” and means “compared with” or “competing with”)

My message of this blog post is this:

LEARNING ENGLISH IS NOT REALLY THE SAME THING AS LEARNING A LANGUAGE

Ok, I hope to have your attention now.  You might be thinking, “What the hell is this crazy guy talking about”?

Well, think about this.  Imagine I told you that I will start to learn Swedish.  That might be fun.  It might be interesting.  It might be a great thing for me to do.  But, I’m probably not going to do it.  (If you are Swedish, please don’t be angry with me :)  I chose this example because many people from Sweden are very smart and will understand this example without being offended)

Why don’t I try to learn Swedish?  Well, the thing is that there are a lot of things that I want to do in this world and I don’t have time to do them all.  There are only about 9 million Swedish people in the world, and they have a great English program already in their country.  I can communicate with many them already with using English.  For me, learning Swedish would be similar to learning a new hobby.  I could learn to play the guitar, I could learn how to cook fancy food, I could learn how to dance, I could learn a lot of things.  I might do some of these things one day, but I’m not going to right now.  We all have only 24 hours in a day and we can’t do everything we want.

Why is learning English SO different?  It might sound like I’m being unfair or something.   Well, here is the thing…

English is the world’s language.  By not having REALLY GOOD English, you are missing out on SO MUCH of what is going on in the world.  Yes!  I’m talking about making a lot more money.  But that is only part of it.  I’m talking about improving your entire life.

The purpose of learning English is NOT to learn a new language and communicate with more people.

The purpose of learning English is to JOIN THE REAL WORLD!!!!!!!!!

You might have an awesome life already, and I hope you do, but I guarantee that it will be a hell of a lot better, richer, and more interesting if you put focussing on learning English as one of the most important things you do in your life for the next few years!

You should absolutely keep your own language and never forget your culture, but it’s almost weird and ridiculous to not take English learning super seriously.  It’s absolutely possible to do it now, it’s fun, and it’s not going to cost you a fortune.  I could write a whole book about the major benefits of learning English, but I think you are smart enough to imagine what some of those are.

I’m not talking about getting to just an “ok” level.  I’m talking about totally kicking ass!  This is what we are doing here.  We are having fun, but we aren’t joking around.  We are serious about making sure your improve your English improves to the point where it makes your life (WAY better, much more interesting, much happier, and it makes MUCH more money for you)

This is not going to happen in one or two days, but it will happen if you take it seriously, and we’re here to help.  The process will be more fun than you think, the results will come faster than you could guess, and the benefits to your life will be MUCH better than you can imagine even now.

English isn’t really just a choice anymore.  It’s a total MUST in my opinion.  Some people understand this but most people don’t.  They don’t understand how important it is because they can’t see it.

Some people never leave their country for a trip, some people never leave their city for a trip, some people never even leave their town or their village in their entire lives!

They might seem happy, but they are in a little bubble.  Can you imagine if you lived in a small town and NEVER left it even one time to see what was outside?  I guess you might know people like this; people who have never been anywhere and live just a simple life of doing the same thing every day; no new thoughts, no new experiences…

I know people like this in Canada.  They don’t know how important it is for them to get out and see some of the world.  They aren’t dying so it doesn’t seem necessary.  I’m trying to say that not learning English WELL is almost like the person who has never left their little farm village.

I don’t wish to insult or judge these people.  I just want to make a point for the people reading this blog who get what I’m trying to say.  If you can read this blog, good for you! Your English is already not bad at all!  But it’s not enough.  You NEED to keep going.  If you don’t believe me, that’s fine.  I just want to make this point to give you something serious to think about.  This is my honest opinion and I truly believe that you won’t regret it if you follow this advice!

Please leave your comments below :)  I love reading them as always.  Do you agree with what I’m saying?  Am I making any sense?  Will this help give you more motivation to learn?  Let me know below…

And also, please remember to visit our English Video lessons every day!  We’ve got over 40 now and we’re making a new one every day, 7 days a week.  I hope you go there and watch the video.  Warning!  Your English WILL get a lot better :)  And also, our monthly membership part of the site will be ready soon.  We know you are gonna LOVE it!

 

29 Responses to “Learning English VS Learning Languages”

  1. adamsky Says:

    I don’t necessarily agree with you that English is a must these days. I personally need to learn it because I decided to live in a country where people speak English but I don’t think that you need to learn it if you don’t use it, even if you don’t understand songs lyrics etc
    I don’t think these people who spend their whole lifein the small towns are less happy than me who can travel to different places and speak other language

  2. kingfisher Says:

    Thanks for the nice blog post.
    Learning English as an access to the world totally makes sense.
    It helps meet more people and we might get lots of new ideas from different people
    with various culture. This may turn out bring something new to our lives and letting us be able to think out of the box.
    Anyways, monthly membership would be great! I wonder how much it would be.
    One more thing, when’s the private lesson coming out? I definitely wanna try them out.
    What is that like, I wanna know more about it.

  3. Marius Says:

    Hi,
    It’s “versus” not “verses.”

  4. Andy Says:

    @Adamsky

    Great response! I actually agree that it’s not really a MUST. Technically, nothing is a MUST other than food and water…, so I kind of chose that word in much less literal way; sometimes we say “That is a ‘must see’ movie” Lol! I guess I am saying that Learning English well is a major key to a much richer life (not simply in a financial sense, but in a more enlightened sense and a fulfilling one. I also agree with you that many people who never leave their towns are very happy, perhaps even even happier than many world travellers in many ways, but there is still something they are missing. If you don’t learn English well, you are living in a certain kind of bubble. You may LOVE that bubble and you may be comfortable in that bubble, but it’s still a bubble. English is more than just a language and it gives you major options in life that otherwise wouldn’t exist.

    Thanks for the comment. Great stuff!

  5. Ivan Kolev Says:

    Another great blog for all thinking people and people who want to achieve something in life. . Thanks Andy for this. The first thing I want to start is the definition of success and happy person. let’s take 100 people for 25 years,they asked them a question, what are your goals in life. All of them say they want to be rich and successful in life. When they become 65 years of age, only 5 of those 100 people were rich and successful in life. Why? This is the big question. First let’s start with those 95 people who have failed in life!!! They were workers with minimum income a median income. Asked them another question. Why do you get up every morning early and go to work? Do you know what every one is saying, BECAUSE EVERY ONE MAKES IT . With this kind of thinking will never succeed in life. Now back to those 5 people, successful. Why they are successful, what the hell they are doing different than other ? Interesting question! They think differently from the rest, this is the key to success!!!!! I will give an example to make my point. Billionaire thinks differently than millionaire. Millionaires think differently than the poor. Healthy person thinks differently from sick one. What the hell is this crazy guy talking about , and what it has to do with learning English ?
    The question why learn English and not someone else language , I’m sure everyone will give his own reasons. ( to succeed in life, a good job, money, women, whatever the reason.)
    How many of those 100 people will become successful, they will learn English language? They have to think differently, why they want to learn English.

  6. Maribel Says:

    I totally agree with you Andrew, Learning English is really different from learning a language. I remember when I was learning Germany, that was a lot of fun, I went to the class for almost two semesters and I realized I had a good progress and could communicate with German people in an intermediate level, by only going to the class for two semester. I though I had a good insight about it and know what’s going on in their language and conversations. but now I m still stuck in English, however I’ve been learning it for many years. it still needs more work to do and its a very live and ongoing language. even native English speaker have to keep up with new words are emerging every day. I am studying for GRE now and its really hard to believe that some questions are really difficult even for native Americans. its the language of science so its developing every day. Your saying makes perfect sense to me.

  7. Maribel Says:

    what happened to the font by the way? that’s too big! :) I guess some body’s complained about it being too small, ha? ;)

  8. Maribel Says:

    thank you Andrew for writing this really interesting blog. You’ve been always inspiring me to keep going and continue learning English more seriously.

  9. Sergio Rodrigues Says:

    I totally agree with you. Learning English is not just studying a language, it is choose between playng a role in a modern and increasily more competitive world or just living on it. Whether we like it or not, English has become the language of business, music, internet and so on, and there is no choice – learn, or better use it, or you`will be left behind.
    Great post.

  10. Lena Says:

    Hi!

    Thank you for one more interesting blog. Yes, I agree with you that people should learn English if they want to have interesting, amazing and rich life. People speaking English can travel around the world easily and they will not die from hunger or get lost anywhere cause ANY country has people being able to communicate in English.
    Financial success mentioned by you is also true in many cases. In my country any specialists (logistics specialists, engineers etc.) are appreciated very much and their salaries are much and much higher than salaries of specialist of the same field but not able to communicate in English. English is a very useful accompanying skill. If you speak English and besides can do anything else you have many chances to do good career.
    I would like to mention also that English knowledge means freedom in some cases. I mean that English speakers can not onle travel easily but also move to another country if they are not satisfied with their life in their home country.
    At the end of my comment I would like to say that speaking English makes the road of our lives much wider and gives us opportunity of choosing.

  11. Emara Says:

    it’s really an amazing article and of course i totally agree with you not learning English meaning losing
    a lot of things in every live fields
    but we must learning our language and not losing it
    because it our culture and we must save it beside learning other cultures

    any way thanks for your article and to be useful for us .

  12. Maria Says:

    I agree that English is the language spoken ‘ all over the world” but there have been some others in history so far.Learning Latin,French or German at school meant a learned generation growing up,who learnt more not only about the nations of the world or how to make more money but,different cultures or literature and art.
    M.

  13. Daniel Says:

    Can’t disagree with that… You know, I used to learn german language all my live and I always hated it. I’ve always loved english and I wanted to have it as my second language but I hadn’t had a choice. I was forced to study german which I hated a lot. After my graduation in my highschool I decided to go with english and study it in my freetime. It’s been almost two yers since I started on my own and I’m better than most of people who had english in their school and been learning it their entire life. As I’m pluging away I’m getting better and better. Sometimes I’m kinda lazy to study so I got some free english days but the point is I will never give up until I’m absolutely fluent at it. Since I don’t have anyone to talk to I tend to talk to myself and it’s pretty helpful, borring sometimes, though. And I totally agree with that part that english is must have. It really is. Withouth it you are missing so many opportunities in your life and not only that but also you can’t ready stuff that aren’t available in your native language for example. It’s so damn comfortable to read text in english without even using vocabulary much.
    This article has motivated me to struggle even more. It’s not easy but I have to persevere. The hard work will always pay off in future :)
    Thanks for what you’re doing here, it’s pretty helpful and stick to it guys. You’re providing perfect podcasts.

  14. ASAD,Pakistan Says:

    I envy English native speakers for being born and raised in English speaking countries. They learn English for free and now they are earning huge bucks by teaching it to other non natives living in Asian and other middle eastern countries. Also, English is the lingua franca so they can pick up some odd jobs easily that simply require communication in the English language. You see, benefits after benefits. Moola after moola rolling in.

    I am not too sure if one can achieve the same proficiency level like that of a native speaker by studying it passively. This is a big hurdle to the mastery of the language.

    I had traveled to 4 different countries on my own and learning English had come handy whenever I need info at airports or on the streets.

    I am still not fluent enough or have good working fluency but I am trying to improve it by watching Andy’s videos and movies/sitcoms on a regular basis.

    Everything takes time and nothing is going to happen overnight but taking a first step is the key to the success. So factors like passion, motivation, and regularity that will finally determine your success at learning the language.

  15. Effat Says:

    Hi
    I’m not going to tell that whether I agree or not but I love English. I hope I can travel to other countries one day but now I just enjoy it and I’m using it as a way of earning money in my country.I just started with this website but I… kind of like it. It seems quite helpful specially here in Iran(my country), because we just have English in schools.I am going to get my IELTS and then maybe CELTA.
    I love you guys and thanks for your beautiful post and podcasts.

  16. sivaraman Says:

    hi guys,
    i agree with you on most of your opinions.i love one thing from you guys that you are not biased for English because i noticed one thing that you mentioned that people should not get rid of their own culture and language,however,English is an additional strength that everyone should possess.
    thank you.

  17. Harry Says:

    Ohh woww fantastic babe i really looking forward to it ;)

  18. nina Says:

    Thank you for this interesting article,as usual.
    i agree with you to make a goal when learning English or whatever we are doing.
    We all know that English is the most spoken language in the world; and people who don t use it or don t leave English countries should have at least a beginner level because they surly will need it one day.
    For people who never leave their countries, towns or villages,believe me going out their countries are the best dream for the most of them because they can t realize what they wish they have not a choice then they seem happy but they are not…………believe me.

  19. Lily Says:

    Hi guys,

    Thank you so much for such great topic. Some people do agree with the point but some not. I personally agree with it. Because I can see myself is getting happier and more confident since I started learning English. I’ve been learning English a half of year, I really enjoying learning English. I LOVE English. Now, I can be able to communicate with foreign customer and friends with confidence.
    That’s a pity that I cannot able to watch these amazing videos, since I cannot able to open the Youtube in China. Hope someday I can watch them through other tools.
    Thank you so much !

  20. Audrey Says:

    Hi guys,
    The topic is great! Maybe it’s not must, but I do think learning English well is a way to fulfill your life quality, due to that English is a really common language during communicating now. Every one has his or her own life style, u can still enjoy ur life without this skill. Just for me, it’s necessary.
    By the way, I’ve sent an email to u about some questions l have for American accent training, I’m not sure whether u got it or not. If u receive it, give me a feedback pls.
    Thank you

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  22. allthereis Says:

    Hi,Andy !

    I became a VIP member of your program a week ago,and I love it !

    But I can’t agree with what you wrote in this post.
    In some sense,you are right.Now English is a lingua franka ,a global language…That is why I want to improve my English…But,at the same time,I have an ambivalent feeling about it….because that is related to a process of history…I mean imperialism ..In 19th century,Great Britain became the super power,and next US…and so-called globalization began some decades ago…which was the same process of globalization of English language….And in 2009,we had Lehman shock…That was the beginning of the end of so-called globalization….What globalization brought us was that :1) destruction of traditional culture and system ,including our own languages. 2) expansion of inequality . ….In my opinion,that is also against democracy in many aspects,including democracy of language…I admit that learning English is a must because that is a de facto common language in the present world…But I can’t say that not knowing or speaking English means to limit our lives..

    Anyway,Andy,I like your English program,and the new project you are doing now !

  23. Jing Says:

    I think you have a point. Learning English is not like learning any other languages because how wide spread it is around the world. And to be able to communicate with people around the world is exciting to most people.
    However, is it a must? There are a lot more essential things to the majority of the people in this world than living an “exciting” life. You were brought up believing you can be what you want to be if you put your mind to it. But I dare say you are the minority.

    This post sounds more like a poorly written advertisement to me. Sorry if it sounds too harsh to you.

  24. Prathyusha Says:

    Hi, its a good point.I love talking in English but hate LEARNING English. May be its because of the educational system we have in India.
    Personally, I don’t understand why silent letters are there….instead they can write what they speak like our Indian languages….we write what we speak. This is called Devanagari lipi (God’s script)
    Lot of pronunciations for a single letter in english make LOTS OF CONFUSION what to speak!!!

  25. Vera Says:

    First of all, I am a person who needs to interecting with this new world all the time. Because of this, I start learning English.a few years ago. I love that language. I love English movies. I love the English universe.But, because I’m 63 years old, things don’t happen faster. Nowadays I have more difficultie in to memorize everything that I’ve been learning since then.
    But, I hope learning it better one day. H
    Who knows?
    By the way, I’m glad for your blog.
    Thanks.both of you are the best.

  26. Pedro Says:

    I MUST agree with you. I’m Brazilian and I could say that it is just astonishing what English speakers have that we don’t have in Portuguese. It really looks like that the English world is a different world. And my English is not that good, yet.

    Of course, I’m saying that from my own perspective, but I suspect that many Portuguese speakers would agree with me.
    Just a few examples from my own perspective:
    - I use Linux at home. I already quit trying to find things in Portuguese. It is really faster to find what I need in English.
    - I enjoy taking photographs. While in Portuguese we have nice things (tutorials, websites, forums, etc), in English I’ve found GREAT things, way better than the resources I’ve found in Portuguese.
    - I play guitar. Considering only my hobbies, this is probably the area that is better developed in Portuguese. But even so, if you don’t understand English you will miss a lot of nice things.

    It is a kind of sad saying all those things. But unfortunately, if I deny that, I would be a liar.

  27. anwar Says:

    I definitely agree with you that English is very important to be learned. I have proved that I can read more news, journals, articles every thing that very useful for my life. Though, ones might think that English is necessary because they may have some purposes why they need to study about.

    In my country, Indonesia, people learn English because wanna study abroad such as America, Australia, and some European countries where international programs are existing. It’s really help them to understand more things in other countries which probably useful to be implemented and developed in my country.

    Frankly, I like your blog.

  28. Yuri Says:

    I agree with all your thoughts in this blog. And I like what you do for teaching us a real English

  29. Negar ,Iran Says:

    There is no doubt that learning English is a necessity in nowadays world, but not to the degree to call it a “must”.It totally depends on the goals people pursue in their lives and to what extend knowing English would be helpful in their daily lives.For instance,what is the point in learning English by a farmer whose primary concerns are all about harvesting the crops in the best way with no free time to dedicate to learning a language which may have no use in his entire life.
    Needless to say,”talent” and “motivation” are two influential factors enhancing the process of learning a language and more essentially learning English.
    Thanks for your helpful post.

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