Yes... finally you made that decision... you signed up for a Dutch class once a week and you were absolutely sure about it... This time you would really speak Dutch!
But then... something happened. You had to go away and you skipped a class. Maybe you traveled to another place or maybe it was something else. Maybe you thought that next time you would catch up... But... have you noticed that catching up is not that easy? Because, when you come back to your class, somehow it seems that you missed a lot. Maybe you missed too much!
And then, before you know it, you miss a class again. And again, and again and catching up seems to be more difficult than ever 🙁
So what to do if you travel a lot and if you still like to speak great Dutch? Then obviously, a class once a week is not the right solution.
Luckily there is something that you could do and it is even better than having a class once a week. Why not see your Dutch learning as a journey as well? The best thing to do is to make sure that you get your Dutch on a sufficient level fast.
What if you could reach a great level within only a couple of days?
Whenever you need to learn something new, there is always a critical phase in the beginning. You could compare it with climbing a mountain. In the beginning it is not certain that you will reach that higher level. It is very easy to feel discouraged and stop putting in the effort that it needs. But... once you are on a higher level, or a higher plain so to speak, then maintaining your skills is relatively easy.
The great thing about learning anything new, is that insight is an important key. Once you know how it works, and certainly if you took some time to practice a new skill again and again, then it can be part of your automatic system.
Sure... it might seem sometimes that you lose that new skill if you have not used it for a while. But... getting that skill back is not that difficult if you focus again for some time.
So here is something that you could do. Make sure that you reach a good level of Dutch within a very short time. A couple of days can already do the trick. Then if you travel, just travel. Don't worry about your Dutch if you are in another country. Just speak the language of that country, or speak your language. Then when you come back to the Netherlands you will be surrounded by Dutch again.
Here is one important thing to remember... It may seem that somehow you 'forgot' everything once you come back. But... this is never true of course. The only thing is that your mind needs to readjust and sometimes it could take some time, even a couple of days. But... then when you start to learn again, you'll notice that somehow you can reach higher levels again, really fast. Information that seemed to be lost all of sudden comes back to you again.
Here is another important secret. Learning a language is all about intensity. And then, repetition is a great thing too. Just make sure that you revisit everything that you have learned some other times and you'll notice that speaking Dutch gets easier and easier.
Also important, if you need to travel a lot, then it could actually be a great advantage. It could be even better than staying in the Netherlands for a long time. People that stay in the Netherlands and that go to a class once a week often get distracted by other things.
Here is another way to look at it. Imagine that you go to a class once a week, but that for some reason you skip one class. Then you will not be engaged with Dutch for 2 weeks. Then if it happens around a vacation such as krokusvakantie, tulpvakantie, then often you will miss Dutch for a longer time, maybe 3 weeks or a whole month!
It is much better to travel then. At least you'll have many more adventures and experiences. Then, if you do it wisely, you can even learn faster than you ever imagined!