Very few people know I wasn’t able to speak English until my 10th grade.
You should be thankful if you can read this. You’re amongst the 20% of people who can speak English.
Only 360 million of them are native speakers. Out of 7.5 billion people, 1.5 billion speaks the English language.
I wasn’t one of them until lately; salute the millions of non-native English speakers for their perseverance in learning to speak a language.
Speaking any language is a blessing. English, however, is not just a language, it’s a way of life.
As you master the art of speaking and the mastery of using the right words, the world seems to open doors for you.
I am writing this to my younger self, to pay it forward to someone who deserves it. To someone who may be living in Pakistan, India, Africa, MiddleEast or just about anywhere in the world. To help them believe it’s possible.
I’ll highlight a few of the struggles with the pure intention to inspire a few genuine souls. To ignite the fire within you to learn more.
To appreciate those who have been through a long journey. To cherish the gratitude within and be thankful.
Why – The Realization
I was able to understand English sentences but could hardly write well and speak clearly.
It wasn’t just a random new year resolution to learn to speak and improve speaking the English language.
It was something even deeper, an observation of what English offers to the world. Non-natives will probably agree with me over this, of how English speakers are treated with respect and are looked up to.
Especially, in Asian countries, such as India and Pakistan. You are considered to be an educated, elite class and are treated very differently.
I could have taken one out of two routes. To either learn it or leave it. The desire to become better would not let me live without learning it.
To learn however seemed impossible then. Because I could not afford English coaching.
A few of the friends went to Berlitz and some to Alliance Francaise. Somewhere within, it was the feeling as if I was failing the class, to study in the same class again while others progress to the next.
There was a mental block, that you can’t learn it without going to these institutes.
As they say, necessity is the mother of all inventions. I had this urge to set no expectations but to do what I can to become to get 1% better.
How – The Process
Subconsciously, I knew to have embarked on a journey of learning English unconditionally.
It was oddly satisfying because even 1% of progress meant meaningfulness, to get 1% closer to achieving my dreams.
What happened next is amazing. I decided to try and test all the possible ways of learning English. To see which works best for me to spare time for learning the language.
My first plan of action was.
Following the popular advice, I went ahead to buy newspapers for a few days. Whenever I could find the time, read the newspapers.
I couldn’t understand more than half of it and so It was irritating.
That’s when I purchased a dictionary. It wasn’t easy learning to use the dictionary and then finding the words in the dictionary for every second word of the newspaper article.
It wasn’t working out nicely. By the time, I figured the meaning of the word I’d forget the article context.
A better medium was needed.
There was this urge to listen to positive news only. So that I could focus on understanding words, accent, body language and more. All that while feeding positivity to my mind.
Bloomberg, Dawn, and National Geography came to rescue.
My first goal was to stop reading the subtitles and listen to the voice, to grasp and understand the words, the accent.
Slowly, it became second nature to be able to understand all of what they said. Along the way, speaking the same way and learning different accents fascinated me.
The Discovery and National Geographic channels helped me to learn expressions and improve my storytelling abilities.
I watched Dawn news for learning new words. As they seemed to be using amazing vocabulary. One that I never heard before but could easily understand the context and remember it.
I got access to the internet and remember times when I used to read 10 hours a day.
What was I reading about?
- Website Designing
There were strange obstacles such as internet connection speed was pretty slow. So watching videos wasn’t an option, especially because it consumed way more Internet and wasn’t affordable.
Having read so much content, it inspired me to start writing. Interestingly, whenever I followed the grammar rules, I made a plethora of mistakes writing.
So ditched grammar and just went writing with whatever sounded right.
Emails were like the nucleus of my writing. Something small yet powerful and what else could be more powerful than emails. Right?
It helped me learn so much more alongside English. Be it persuasion, writing etiquette, psychology and so much more.
More than anything, to have ample gratitude and to not become arrogant after learning. Realizing it’s a skill but one that can be learned.
I think no achievement is small yet there always exists a bigger goal to achieve. As far as you’re your competition, everything is fine. That’s what life is about.
I mean, imagine if I talk about Elon Musk for a second and how he has done wonders with SpaceX. Would my English learning journey even matter?
Intra-communication (Sidechat with myself)
Just imagine, what if Elon Musk (@elonmusk) answers yes 😀 Oh common, he has 30 million followers at his Twitter account. What makes you think he would even notice, let alone answer? Honestly, it doesn’t matter to me if he answers as much as the reader’s learning matters. But if that would have been my goal, trust me, if SpaceX could still get their rocket to launch/land, so can I bring Elon Musk to respond at my blog. Smiles.
Jokes apart, I think inspiration is important, but competition with self is crucial.
Knowledge and Education
I have always been a firm believer in knowledge, and not a degree. Having said that, a degree can only help.
I never completed my graduation though. There’s a long story to it. Things happened and never felt persuaded to do it.
Until one day, I woke up feeling left off and couldn’t envision a better future without education. I wanted to experience the learning process and learn a few things along the way.
There’s no looking back since then, not only did I do my graduation but on the verge of completing my master’s in marketing as well.
Freelancing & Jobs
Having done a few corporate jobs and freelancing both, I found freelancing to be a better fit.
Maybe because I had a few education and career gaps along the way, so I couldn’t seize lucrative opportunities.
But not because I need the remote working freedom only or just the ability to work at my hours. Yes, those are side-benefits of it.
What adds meaningfulness for me, is the ability to learn at a rapid pace, implement solutions in smart ways and prominently work on a variety of projects.
Looking forward to more of freelancing. I offer these services.
Ups and Downs
Over the years, I’ve learned the importance of living. There are times when I’ve lost all my investments. Be it in forex, stocks, and others.
Learning lessons is one thing but being broke is a very lonely feeling.
I’ve always had this business mindset. I couldn’t start any business given the resources I had left. It was time to think of something, which I can treat as a business in the long term.
Your previous successes can play a pivotal role in reminding you of a few lessons.
My English learning story helped me learn one key lesson
- There are always two ways, to do or not to do it. If you are the one who wants to do it, then your why has to be strong. Starting with whatever you can/have is the key.
The idea of blogging seemed feasible. It could be a good start, given the fact that I know about marketing, can speak English well, have helped individuals/companies to operate blogs and many other achievements in the freelancing industry.
So it might provide me with steady freelancing work but surely help in networking with like-minded people, a chance to truly help my younger self, and to develop valuable products for my audience.
There’s a story of how I came up with this blog name, Good Blogging, at the About page. A very interesting one.
With whatever I do, my sole intention is to always provide and get maximum value. Being a human I make mistakes and at times blunders.
But should that stop us from living?
Starting to blog about blogging is indeed another challenge. One side of the coin is the pure desire to help people in starting to blog and support their blogging journey. To provide unmatched value.
While the other is to bring value to my family. The innate desire to feed my kids with a good education and the best club sandwich around.
It feels impossible, just like it felt while starting to learn English. As my peers were going to the best institutes around.
Today, my peers, a few hundred bloggers are generating exceptional content. It feels small, way too small to be able to make any impact.
But it reminds me of my little ant-like approach for learning English. It made a difference. It was not only me learning English, but the other half, the newspaper writers, news channels and all the other people involved.
Today, the other half is you. Everything from your comments, shares, support is the lifeblood of my blogging dream.
Like with English, a few mediums worked well for me and a few didn’t. So this blog might resonate with a few and not with everyone. I am fine with it.
Are you one of these few ( the other half)? What’s your goal in life? What has my English story taught you?
Here’s what I feel like about my journey. This is just the beginning 🙂
Get Access to Premium Resources for FREE
Follow my blog with Bloglovin