Keep Testing yourself 2: Fears

Sorry for the delay on the post with my language test prep of the last week I have been quite busy. 

Last week I wrote a post for you about why you need to keep testing yourself. My basic point was this: you get more of what you measure. So keep measuring your language and you will keep getting more.

Some of you may not be convinced yet. But I don’t think you aren’t convinced because you don’t think that I am wrong or there is a better way. I think you don’t test yourself the same reason I don’t (or at least I put it off).  Fear. We are afraid of that feeling we used to get in middle school when the teachers handed the tests back.

So I am going to name the fears that keep me from testing myself. I also promise to report my results upcoming test no matter how bad. Then when you feel ready to test yourself- I will right a post about how to try and give yourself an intermediate test.

So let’s name the some fears.

  • You are not as far as you should be. – Who says you are not as far as you should be? You do, what you mean is you are not as far as you want to be. None of us are and we all have room to grow in. And one thing that will definetly not help us move forward is remaining ignorant of our current language skills.
  • You will embarrass yourself- No one likes this feeling. But too much we avoid things that will be good for us to avoid letting on we don’t know what we are doing. In fact if we use this feeling we get from a bad test it can help refocus us so that we do better next time. So embrace this as a motivation instead.
  • You will find out how far you have to go- This is actually not something you will find out. This is something you already know. You would not be afraid of a test if you thought it would be easy. If I was going to be given a basic English test I wouldn’t be worried at all. In fact I am sure you can do one on buzzfeed for fun. You already know you have a lot more learning to do but if you don’t ever test yourself you won’t know what you should be learning.

There is something more dangerous than these fears- its when we justify our fears. So not only do we avoid tests but we do it because its better for us. So as a bonus let me name to justifications that might rise up in you when it comes to a test.

  • Eventually I will learn the language anyways. – This might be true or it might not. But it can only be true if you have unlimited time and no real desire to improve. Why not instead of assuming you will eventually learn try and take steps to learn today.
  • Test does not really help me learn.- This actually partially true. You will not learn any new language during your test. And this can be frustrating because you there will be parts you don’t understand and taking the test doesn’t help you learn them. But what it does help you learn is what you need to learn.

So that’s it. Face the fear and take the test. And as always I want to hear about your fears, triumphs and language learning in the comments.

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