It's all about...
Living life to the fullest!
We’re Cristina and Pete
We're passionate about helping people who really want to speak Spanish, but don't know how to break through the barriers holding them back and slowing their progress.
As a mixed Spanish-English couple, we understand the difficulties of wanting to connect with people from a different country, learning a new language, cultural misunderstandings and the frustration of not getting there as quickly as you want...
We've navigated through all of these difficulties ourselves and have helped hundreds of others do the same so we can confidently say that no matter where you are with your Spanish, things can be turned around.
But, how did we get here?
When we met, Pete didn’t know any Spanish at all... he had been to Spain a few times before, but mainly to touristy areas where English was spoken.
But when he met Cristina, learning to speak Spanish soon became a priority so he could speak with family and friends and really get to know the country at a deeper level.
CRISTINA HAS ALWAYS BEEN FASCINATED BY LANGUAGES
Since I was a little girl I've been curious and passionate about other languages. So it doesn't come as a surprise that I have focused my career in the language learning field, moved to the UK and married an Englishman!
I was always a very motivated learner, but I followed the wrong path to learn English. Years of traditional school and after school lessons all the way to University, where I completed a degree in English.
However, soon after that I went to the States "for a little extra practice" (I naively thought) and found that not only did I not understand, but I couldn’t find the right words for common and frequent situations, and that I had hardly any fluency and spontaneity! I felt extremely frustrated and disappointed.
Without knowing it, I had accepted that:
- To learn a language you needed to spend a looooong time
- You needed to know and master all of the grammar inside out before being fluent and competent
Making mistakes was embarrassing and something to avoid
(which in turn had been blocking my fluency!)
That experience in the States truly shaped my future both personally and professionally. It really made me question the system, the approach to language learning in general and myself as a learner in the world.
Since then, having helped hundreds of people and studied the neuroscience of learning to understand how the brain learns best, I can confidently say:
1. That learning is most efficient when it is real, relevant and fun. Oh, and it certainly doesn't need to take forever!
2. That being selective and purposeful about the parts of the language that you learn, and in which order, is key to your progress.
3. That once you understand the process and know how to move past frustration, setbacks and feelings of incompetency, there will be no stopping you.
Pete, however, has always been very practical and hands on...
So he took Spanish learning in a completely different way.
Since day one I had a genuine interest in connecting with Spanish people and getting to know them.
From the early days, my first priority was to get to know Cristina better so it was essential for me to learn her language and culture.
I had been to Spain a few times before, but since Cristina and I met, I wanted to go deeper and enjoy every experience in an authentic way and not as a tourist.
The more I learned about Spain and the language, the deeper I wanted to go!
But it wasn’t always so easy…
- There were times when things were very overwhelming... people talking very fast and usually all at the same time!
- Feeling tired, embarrassed and frustrated for not getting past the surface
- I’ve never been “a natural student” in the traditional sense, it takes a lot of effort for me to sit in front of a textbook. At times, this left me feeling unsure if I would ever be able to learn Spanish properly.
However, we realised that Pete's Spanish improved in leaps and bounds after he had been in contact with Spanish people while also doing things that he enjoyed. He was primarily looking at the language as a tool to communicate rather than a study subject… And that's what made his learning journey so successful.
Because he was driven by his desire to connect, integrate and enjoy the experience rather than getting it completely right from the beginning.
No matter where you are right now, you CAN do this too. And we are here to help.
WANT TO DISCOVER WHAT IS HOLDING YOU BACK?
Watch our free course "4 Steps to Spanish Success" to understand what key areas you need to focus on so you can finally speak Spanish naturally and confidently.