7 Limiting Beliefs in Learning English

Through this post, you will discover 7 limiting beliefs that prevent you in practicing your spoken English. These are called mental blocks that are destructive, negative, and should be avoided. Be sure that you hold no any point mentioned. If yes, your mentality is good; if no, there are thousand ways lead to Rome.

Too young or too old

"I am too young" or "I am too old" to learn English is the most common reason why people fail in their learning. Regarding this limiting belief, the only one theory that almost hit this point is 'critical period' theory proposed by Krashen which states that children up-to 14 years old would never be native-like. The theory is good. The problem is when you misunderstand the core point of this theory. The theory does not explained that people up-to 14 years old would never be good at spoken English, isn't it?! It means that, when acquisition is impossible, learning would be the best option.

Worrying grammar

English language learners are sometimes faced with a fact that they are thinking about grammar when speaking. It is natural, positive, and good. But when it leads you to a pause when performing speaking your target language, you need to re-think it twice. The Beatles, a famous band from Liverpool, wrote "but she don't care" in their song lyric. It is known as poetic license. Why don't you break the rule of grammar when you don't know how to say a particular expression and saying "I am performing a poetic license like The Beatles did in their lyric"?


After learning a single point and you fail to recall what you have learned, you judge yourself negative. You may forget that you are a learner. You can't, and it is almost impossible, to be good at any language without making mistake. You need to do what is called as 'reframing' - that is, reframing your belief about the essence of mistakes. You know, mistakes are your friend indeed. They are our best friends ever. They help us much more than our teachers help us. Teachers are paid to teach you English, you do not even need to spend any coin to make some mistakes.

I know it, but I can't say it

Congratulations! It is common. It proves that you are still a human. You have read the language, you have tried to speak it, you have learned the grammar and you can understand it when you hear the spoken words but you are still unsatisfied with your spoken English. Once again, congratulations! This means that you did it well. A motivational sentence I hear in a speech states that when the language hurts you and confuses your brain, your method works.


Remember, you are a human and you are a learner. One of the characteristics of human is forgetful. In dealing with this case, you need to read one or two motivational book written in English. By doing this, you will obtain two positive points: you learn written English expressions unconsciously and you reinforce your motivation.

I don't need English

You are living in the globalization age. The advancement of internet has made everything easier to be done, especially communication. You even need 2 or three languages more to be learned such as Spanish and Mandarin that are predicted to be the next international languages after English.

English is not my official language

That's 100% correct! But you need it. It leaves no reason not to learn English in this nowadays era. It is an international language that is essential to be learned. A speaker who presents his speech on TED says that he is embarassed because he can only speak English. He needs more languages to be mastered. Some of my friends say that they fail getting a prestigious job because they cannot pass the TOEFL test - they don't even try to learn it. Deep inside your heart, you know exactly that you need English even it is not your language. Reasons you build to break the previous thesis just make your brain feels good. In fact, your heart knows what is good for you well.