In learning a new language other than our mother language it is most probable that we will experiences quite a number of difficulties before we gain proficiency of the language. I personally have learned 8 languages: fluent in 6 (Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, Italian, German, French) , and the other 2 (Mandarin, Arabic) I am able to carry out a conversation on most topics with those who fluently are able to speak.
Among the common challenges people come across and I have personally mostly encountered include:
Like in learning anything else distractions are a major hindrance in learning language. They alter with concentration of an individual hence basic language skills are lost. To accurately deal with this one should make sure that he/she is mentally ready to engage in learning the language to avoid interference from distractions.
On most cases when learning a new language the greatest problem is in pronunciation or rather articulation of the words in the way they should be. Poor pronunciation of learnt words mostly leads to misinterpretation of crucial information. To handle this issue when learning one should take key interest in the articulation of various vowels and consonants that form the words.
Lack of Motivation
This amounts the biggest challenge of learning language. For instance in learning Chinese language it was increasingly difficult for me to actually get myself into paying attention.Intrinsic motivation is generally important for anyone wishing to learn. In this one should be fully aware of what they stand to gain in learning the language.
Poor training and guidance
Most of the people who attest to having had difficulties in learning a new language would most likely point to poor training, lack of proper materials or may even have lacked appropriate guidance while learning. Poor trainers often make learning a language difficult if they fail to provide immediate feedback or fail to use proper materials to administer learning. To carter for this I suggest that one should take a proper research of the language you wish to learn and make the right choices after getting good guidance.
The number of hours that one invests in trying to learn a new language greatly affects the rate at which you will learn. It is key for one to practice as much as possible especially in reading and listening to comprehensions in order to gain mastery of the language without any difficulties.
In learning a new language the aspect of misunderstanding arises when one is not able to distinguish between to words that are similar but have different meanings or two different words that refer to the same thing. This creates a difficulty when verbally communicating in a new language, when this words are used there arises some sort of misunderstanding in trying to link the said word to the meaning of the statement. This could be eradicated if when learning theoretically one gets to know all the related words and vocabularies of the language.
Among other common difficulties in learning language are lack of interest in the language, the reliance of using non-linguistic problem solving techniques, mistaking recognition for understanding which later results to difficulties in communication and also the failure to understand something immediately during learning. Some people tend to use more time before they can fully gain mastery in a language.
Basically in conclusion learning any new language is an uphill task and it narrows down to an individual willingness and determination to actually do away with this difficulties and embrace the language. Remember, the decision to learn a new language is not a one time thing – it is a life choice. Think about it. You learn new words and meanings in your native language every single day. The process is exactly the same for any other languages you decided to pick up. For some, language comes easy, for others it may be hard. I always believe learning the second language is the hardest, after that its quite easy. Its all about building connections in the brain.