Mi nombre es Diego y es un placer conocerte.
As you may have guessed, I’m a teacher and the founder of Spanish to Mind.
I know you’re here because you struggle to understand every time you hear a conversation between Spanish native speakers. I know you want to improve your skills to understand spoken Spanish. I know you feel like:
- You’ve studied so much that you should be able to understand Latinos by now.
- No matter how hard you try, you keep feeling that native speakers talk very fast.
- People are always leaving you in the dark when they talk fast.
- Native speakers don’t choose the words you know.
- You feel like Spanish speakers don’t pronounce words properly.
- People in real life speak rapidly and unclearly.
I know that, because I’ve been there too. Just like you, I’m a language learner, but in my case, I was struggling with your mother language: English!
You see… I’m Colombian, and in this country, children are supposed to learn English since kindergarten.
Now, when you hear that somebody is studying a language from childhood, you probably may think that learning it would be a piece of cake for this person.
After all, we’ve all heard that it’s easier to learn a language when you’re young.
But that was not my case…
After having lessons for years, and even though “I had to know English” to be able to graduate from high school, I could not understand the real spoken language.
Every time I had to face a real conversation, I remember feeling like I’d freeze and panic, because I stopped understanding whenever I found an unknown word in a conversation.
I felt silly and ridiculous because people would make questions to me and my mind was just blank, trying to figure out what the other person was requiring from me.
Of course, I didn’t want anybody to realize that I couldn’t catch a word of English, so I would always say something like:
- “I don’t know”
- Or the classic: “can you speak slower, please?”.
I could always understand my teachers, but understanding people in the street was just impossible. Needless to say, that unless subtitles were on, movies weren’t an easy thing.
It seemed like I was gonna fail, thought that I was not good for languages…
But then I found a breakthrough. It was a tool, a method, a system, whatever you want to call it, and it came in the form of stories.
Stories became such a powerful instrument to comprehend native speakers that this “problem to understand” went from being a struggle to an automatic task for my brain.
- After some time of using stories to improve my skills, I can understand the spoken language and associate words directly into my thinking with no translations.
- I don’t need to translate what I hear anymore.
- I can understand what a native speaker says to me at their normal speaking cadence
- It’s easy to understand what people say, it’s almost effortlessly.
- I stopped feeling that people in real life spoke rapidly and unclearly.
I got such powerful results, that I started to use stories when I became a Spanish teacher. And the best part about that is that my students started to get the same results I got.
If you want to learn how I use stories to understand native speakers then the first step you need to take is to download my free ebook: 10 Secretos que nadie te dice par a hablar español como un nativo: