Setting good language goals

As 2020 came to an end (finally!) And the new year has started, I sat down to properly write my language learning goals for the new year, but I struggled to find a way to correctly do so.

How do you set good, efficient and achievable goals that lead to results?

I find that the goals I often gravitate towards setting are obscure & sometimes out of reach.

What questions do you ask yourselves when you set your language learning goals?

Thanks in advance to anyone who takes the time to share their input, and of course:
Happy new year!
שנה טובה!
¡Feliz año nuevo!


I’m setting myself the goal of attaining B2 fluency in Spanish, German and Romanian. That’s the concrete goal. The daily/ weekly goal is to listen/ speak/ watch content in each of my languages of strong study.
I’m so glad to be a part of a community, here, that is so encouraging in my language pursuits. And I have people I can speak with in other languages. The ephemeral goal is confidence in my conversational skills.

I’m looking forward to the new year, I know it’s going to be a great one!


Thank you! Good luck!

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If you write down a list with language learning goals in all your target languages you will already have realised a nice achievement. It is no waste of time and effort this way even if you cannot realise anything later.

Si vous écrivez une liste avec des objectifs d’apprentissage des langues dans toutes vos langues cibles, vous aurez déjà réalisé une belle réalisation. Ce n’est pas une perte de temps et d’efforts de cette façon, même si vous ne pouvez rien réaliser plus tard.

Se scrivi un elenco con obiettivi di apprendimento delle lingue in tutte le tue lingue di destinazione, avrai già realizzato un bel risultato. Non è una perdita di tempo e di sforzi in questo modo, anche se non riesci a realizzare nulla in seguito.
As jy 'n lys neer skryf met taalleerdoelwitte in al jou doeltale, sal jy reeds 'n lekker prestasie besef het. Dit is geen vermorsing van tyd en moeite op hierdie manier nie, selfs al kan jy niks later besef nie.
Happy new year.


Hi Monet,
Feliz año 2021!
For me, it works best to think about what I want to do with a language rather than what level I want to achieve. I try to think about how I integrate each language into my life. I make (small) plans for what activities I want to do in a certain language or what materials I want to work with or what habit I want to start. I also only plan a couple of months ahead.
Of course, there are always overall goals, like reaching fluency, making fewer mistakes etc., but I don’t set a date for them. Like @PinAngel said, it’s just an overall goal, and the goal will obviously always be to get better. Then there are weekly or monthly goals that are more important to me. Those are usually about the content I want to engage with. If you have certain materials for a certain level (e.g. B1), you can easily set a time frame and certain times for when you want to work through them. Or maybe you want to make it a habit to listen to a certain podcast or the news in a certain language every morning during breakfast or your goal can be to finish reading a novel. I also make sort of a schedule for what language I watch TV in (if I watch TV that day). It’s flexible though. It’s just to keep some languages in my life on a regular basis.
I also like making short-term plans and reevaluating because it has happened to me that I started working with certain materials enthusiastically and after a while got really tired and bored of them. And there is just no point in forcing yourself to do something that you don’t enjoy. So, I just dropped them completely and made a new plan with different materials.
I also try to keep it flexible. Life happens and I don’t always have time to do everything I planned. But that’s no problem, I just get back to it the next day. BTW, Lindie Botes, who was also at the conference, has a YouTube Channel about language goals and productivity and she has recently made a few videos about her struggles with setting too many goals and how she is now focussing more on short-term goals and habits. So, maybe you want to check that out.
Good luck.


Thank you @Ron! Happy new year! :smiley:

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Thank you so much @Miri, setting monthly & weekly goals are a great Idea!
I have watched her most recent videos, which got me thinking about how I write my own set of goals. :smile:
Good luck!


Hi Miriam!

@miri: That’s such a great reply! :slight_smile:

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It depends of the way you’re studying languages.

For instance, in Japanese, I use a textbook so I know I want to do chapters 15 and 16 of Genki II before the month of February. I also know I want to know the first 250 words of the JLPT N4 Memrise list before that deadline.

In comparison, for Portuguese and Spanish, I just try to get exposure in my everyday life and speak with native speakers. So it’s much harder for me to make goals.


Thank you @mmlemonade, good luck! :blush: