The five hardest languages to learn

Are you up to the Challenge? Try Learning One of the Hardest Languages in the World… That May Not Be Hard at All

Let’s first look at some language facts that may convince you to start learning a new “hard” language. Remember: being fluent in a difficult language that few are prepared to tackle will give you an edge in the job market.

1.There is no such thing as a “hard language” if you have a strong passion for and enough motivation to learn it.

Mind games are key and do work. You are the master of your mind and your mind is a plastic miracle that can be stretched and shaped at any age. If you convince your brain that a language is hard, it will make up a hundred reasons to prove that incorrect belief to you. Motivation can play a huge role in language retention as well. Your brain functions better (memory and cognitive processes) when you are in a positive mood (determined, motivated, goal-centered, etc.) making so-called “hard” languages seem much easier.

2. Your native language plays a role in your choice

Check out our previous article Start Learning it Today, Use it Tomorrow! The article teaches you how to spot the easiest languages to learn based on your native language. A language may look easier or more difficult depending on how similar it looks to a dialect you are already fluent in. Similar vocabulary words, expressions or grammar may make you feel more comfortable tackling that new language while a dialect made up of “strange” words and syntax make you feel anxious about what your language-learning journey will feel like.

3. Look for language classes in your area or online

Experienced instructors know how to structure language learning in a way that does not make students want to run away from the class, language, country, and everything they have ever loved. Nevertheless, consider that the instructor or course might not be a good fit for you and that choosing another learning method or institution (rather than a “less complex” language) may be a better option. In other words, do not be too quick to throw in the towel and label a language as “too hard to learn”; give it a chance, it might be just the way you are trying to learn it.

4. Grammar rules and writing complexity are two of the main reasons that keep language learners from embracing a new language

While there may be many reasons to decide against learning a specific language, there are many more reasons to take on the challenge. You can eventually master the grammar rules that affect verbal and written communication. Like anything worth having in life, language fluency takes hard work and determination. Try to visualize what your professional or personal life will be like once these language skills are yours.

 

 

Many factors play a role in acquiring any new skill from who teaches you to your personal learning style. Take a look at some of the “hard” languages that may make your curriculum vitae stand out and are actually very easy to learn, especially if you already speak English.

1. Mandarin

Mandarin comes in at number one for the hardest languages to learn because its written form is difficult to recognize. The tone is also a factor that adds to the challenge of learning the language since there are many similarities among Chinese vocabulary words that a fluent speaker can easily hear. In addition, this popular dialect is full of idioms and aphorisms, which may confuse you when you first start to learn it.

2. Arabic

The Arabic language has 10 different dialects but one set of complex grammatical rules that users need to follow carefully to avoid being misunderstood. In fact, this is the reason that makes Arabic one of the most difficult languages to translate (but that’s a story for a different day. You will find similar letter sounds represented by unfamiliar characters that do not include vowels. Known as the language of Islam, Arabic has spread throughout the world.

3. Japanese

The Japanese language has three complete writing sets called kanji, hiragana and katakana, which is a lot to learn and recall. You can start learning easily by focusing on basic kanji then learning the next sets as you become more comfortable. Your instructor should familiarize you with the Western “horizontal rows” writing style and the traditional “vertical columns”. While Japanese and Mandarin share some characters, it is said to be much easier to learn than the Chinese language.

4. Navajo

The Navajo language is used in Mexico and North America and is spoken with a much slower pace than English. Depending on your learning style, this fact may help you understand spoken speech faster than reading. Unlike English, Navajo is made up of verbs and does not include adjectives. The language can be mastered faster than you think even though written words are pronounced differently when spoken.

5. Icelandic

Icelandic is spoken in beautifully-landscaped Iceland, an isolated country which is why the language stayed pure. The language has not changed since the 9th century and is thought to be a dialect of Old Norse a dialect that was used throughout the Middle Ages. Today, 320,000 people across the world (not a huge number, but significant nonetheless). The meaning of many Icelandic vocabulary words especially when you learn that “computer” translates to “witch of numbers”.

So in closing, do not forget that you can learn any language you put your mind to. “Hard” languages might just take more effort to learn but are not impossible to master. You might actually learn some fascinating facts or funny direct translations.

 

Do not forget to contact us by email, social media message or request a quote online for quality, accurate translations sent through the Witch of Numbers (ok…Computer, we couldn’t resist).

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