And it is a very interesting question as not only is there no simple answer, but also the answer may surprise you… because a huge part is really up to you!
Let me explain.
There are critical elements that will influence how long it will take you and most of them are actually within your control.
Let’s explore each of them in more depth:
If you live in Spain, how many *real* opportunities do you have daily to interact with people? Go through your day to day and identify the situations where the interactions are “easier and more predictable” and build it from there.
Having phone conversations in a different language is one of the hardest things to master, particularly if it’s with people we’ve never met or spoken to before and it’s an important call.
Because over the phone, similar sounds are more difficult to distinguish, and also, we miss all forms of non-verbal communication (like reading their lips, facial expressions and body language).
However, if you can remain calm and put into words what’s happening, you’ll get through the situation successfully (ie. Hay mala cobertura, ¿te puedo volver a llamar en 5 minutos? There’s bad reception, can I call you back in 5 minutes?)
Here's 8 super helpful phrases when there is a problem while you’re on the phone in Spanish for all levels that you can use any time:
Most Spanish words that look the same (or very similar) in English are in fact very close in meaning. They’re called “cognates”. And when you’re learning another language, it is very uplifting to hear a new word and think… “YES! I know this”
These words are called “false friends”. And today I’m bringing you five of the most confusing ones for intermediate learners. Mastering these will help you speak Spanish more confidently
Sp. Actual - current, present day (Ex. Una noticia actual - Current news)
En. Actual in Spanish is “real, verdadero” (Ex. el coste real - The actual cost)
Sp. Realizar - “perform, make, do, carry out” (Ex. Ejercicios fáciles de realizar - Easy to perform exercises”)
En. Realise is...
As you know, here at Your Spanish Dreams, we’re all about helping you integrate in Spain and communicate easily and naturally with the locals.
And one of the best ways to know what’s going on is by understanding the colloquial expressions used on a daily basis. Some expressions can be guessed because there may be a similar version in English. But, if you hear people saying…
Madre mía, he estado trabajando todo el fin de semana y estoy hecho polvo -...
If you want to sound more natural and spontaneous in Spanish, you’re about to learn a huge trick on how to do just that!
Many people think that the ultimate way to sound fluent and native means learning more grammar, vocabulary, etc (which of course is necessary). However, that on its own won’t give you the native distinction.
These are little words and noises like “erm”, “so”, “well”, “I mean”, “right”, “you know” in English... They’re called filler words because we use them to fill in the gaps while we’re thinking about what to say next.
Well, in Spanish, there’s a whole set of them too!
And the good news is, these words are quick to learn and will instantly help you sound and feel more native, whatever your level.
Because they give a sense of...
Looking to sound like a true Spaniard? Then learning some colloquial expressions will definitely help you get there.
And today I’m bringing you some of the funniest ones… to do with milk!!
Yes, I know it’s a bit odd, but us Spaniards seem to be obsessed with milk and the word “leche” means much more than just milk in Spain. In fact, there's a whole range of milk-related phrases that are commonly used every day with very different meanings!
Let’s look at 4 of the most used ones:
"To be the milk! (Both to express positive and negative feelings)
“To have bad milk”- To be bad tempered
Is the Spanish in your head, but when someone asks you something, you can’t bring it out? Do you sometimes freeze and cannot formulate an answer?
If this is happening to you, keep reading, because there's light at the end of the tunnel!
I know how extremely frustrating and discouraging this is because it happened to me when I was learning English. It seemed so easy for some people to just flow and have no problem responding with ease, that I couldn’t understand why I wasn’t able to do that considering how much I had been studying. I had no idea what I was doing wrong…
In this video, we openly share what it takes to develop the speed of thought that you need to be able to answer questions without thinking and we explain the 3 key areas you can start working on today so you develop this skill much quicker.
And the truth is that no matter your level, it’s not too late to turn things around.
Because in Spain, people generally discuss their health and symptoms quite happily and openly. This is a bit of a cultural difference compared to other countries like the UK for example, but in Spain, as soon as there is a small degree of familiarity, people will happily talk about it… sometimes in a lot of detail!
Watch out though, because one of the most commonly used expressions is a false friend with English!...
Do you find them confusing too?
In this week’s video, we look at the main use of each of them. Of course, these verbs have more, but confusion partly happens when we look at too many meanings at once!
(the brain is more likely to get overwhelmed and not integrate any at all)
Watch our video to get clear on what their main use is so you can start using them comfortably straight away!
1. Stick to the meanings that we talk about in the video until you feel confident (in different tenses and persons too) ie. we stayed, he will stay, I am meeting up with, etc. Once you are happy with these, incorporate other meanings. This is crucial so the meanings don’t get mixed up!
2. Think of real examples, any situations where you would use each of them. I cannot...
Do you often rehearse in your head how to say something, brace yourself to speak to a Spanish person only to be met with “¿qué?” or what’s worse, they respond in English?
I know, it can be really discouraging.
However, there’s always something that can be done to make things better and get past these obstacles
Because if you can hear a sound in Spanish and know how to make it yourself, you have better chances to understand it when Spanish people use it too.
And improving your pronunciation and sounding more clear means that the language is more familiar and natural to you, rather than foreign.
In today's video, we give you simple ideas on how to do just that.
By following these...