Why Understanding More about Procrastination Can Significantly Impact Your Language Learning & Life
In episode 21 of Think Big Podcast, I chat with fellow Neurolanguage coach Juliana Xavier Sá about Procrastination. This is not another 'How to overcome procrastination episode' rather an open and honest conversation that acknowledges the challenges and contradictions that come with procrastination. While we also give some ways to help get back on track our objective was to help those who are impacted by procrastination to feel less alone. This conversation is for anyone who learns languages and is ready to feel inspired.
In the episode, we discuss:
✨ Juliana's story and her teaching and language learning experiences
✨ What is procrastination, why it exists and why it's normal
✨ Creativity and procrastination and the difference between procrastination and making choices
✨ Juliana's 4 tips for managing procrastination
✨ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/juliana.xaviersa/
✨ Connect with Juliana on LinkedIn
Tara's details: ✨ Follow me on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/archienglishteacher
✨ Connect with me on LinkedIn Tara Cull
Want more examples of practical language for architects? Check out our planner below.
Books for further reading
📚 Atomic Habits, James Clear
get back on track - to go back to a routine or in the direct direction
Put things off - to procrastinate and do things at a later stage
Self-sabotaging - doing things that stop you from making good decisions
Throw yourself into something - to be dedicated to something
fall off the bandwagon - to stop doing a habit or daily task
In the episode, we talk a little about terms related to cultural differences including:
High context culture
High-context cultures will use communication that focuses on underlying context, meaning, and tone in the message, rather than just the words themselves. High context cultures include - Japan, China, France, Brazil, and more.
Low-context cultures on the other hand are those that communicate information in direct, explicit, and precise ways. Low-context cultures include - The United States of America, Canada and Australia.
Top-down culture vs bottom-up culture
There are two basic approaches to organisational culture: top-down and bottom-up. In top-down cultures, decisions tend to be made by high-level executives and management. In bottom-up decision making, there is more influence from all levels of an organisation not just senior management.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 00:00
You're listening to think big episode 21 Hello big thinkers and welcome to episode 21 of Think Big English for architects, the first episode of the year and what better way to start the new year by tackling a topic like procrastination. I'm your host, Tara Cull, Australian language teacher, coach, and landscape architect. And I'm bringing all these things together to help you build more outstanding communication skills. If English is your second language, and you're an architect, a landscape architect, interior designer, a student or you work in the built environment, or you're a creative language learner, then you are definitely in the right place. To find out more about my coaching programmes, you can go to archy english.com/coaching. And as always, you'll find the free transcript with key vocabulary and expressions from the episode at archy english.com/podcast. Today, I'm excited to share my conversation that I had late last year with fellow neuro language coach Juliana Xavier, about procrastination. Now this is not another how to overcome procrastination episode or how to hack procrastination. Rather, it's an honest conversation that acknowledges that procrastination exists and that it's okay. Well, we also give some ways to help get back on track. Our objective with this episode was to help those who feel impacted by procrastination to also feel less alone. Even I walked away from our conversation, feeling inspired, and wanting to learn more and ready to take on the year ahead. And more excited about learning not just about language learning, but about learning in general. So who is Juliana? Well, she is a teacher and a language coach teaching general English and English for specific purposes. She also teaches German from a one to b two. She's also learnt German. And she specialises in andragogy, which is a type of instruction for adults, that needs to focus more on the process of learning and less on the content being taught. So there are some really important things that we need to make sure we, we incorporate in this type of learning. And it's thinking about first things that we need to know and why we need to know them. Looking at the experience, what experience does the person have, what can we what experience can we connect it to, we're looking at taking responsibility for the learning. We're looking at readiness. So making sure that the learning solves a real life problem, not just learning something for the sake of learning. And we're trying to understand how we can resolve that, that problem. And then finally, we're looking at intrinsic motivation. So we're trying to help the client with internally motivating them or trying to improve their internal motivation, rather than external motivation. Almost all of Juliana's clients are Brazilian, so she's based in Brazil, and they are all around the world with very specific needs. So she has a CELTA, a CPE and a specialist degree in English teaching. So it's safe to say she's a very qualified teacher. She knows what she's talking about. And just like me, Juliana is a certified Neurolanguage coach. She's worked in various contexts, including course and materials development, especially in medical English and holds a bachelor's degree in arts. She collaborated on a podcast for educators named Entre Aulas for two years, or until the pandemic happened, she tells me and she considers herself to be a multi potential person, which essentially means she cannot stick to one thing and I can definitely relate Juliana. She has many interests at the moment and they are mostly related to her work, Neuroscience and Education, cognitive psychology, self regulation theories, organisation, productivity, well being and vampires, and you will find out a really interesting fact about what she also likes in the episode. She describes herself as a social introvert, a curious mind and an audio bookworm. You are going to love this conversation. I think it's an open conversation. She shares a lot of great tips and talks a lot about how she focuses on things with her learners. And given that in this episode, we are going to be focusing on how to learn we're going to be less focused on looking at different language examples. Let's jump straight into find out more about Juliana and tackle this very important topic of procrastination. Well, Juliana, thank you very much for meeting me today and agreeing to have this conversation with me. I think it's going to be a fun conversation. So, before we begin, can you tell us a little bit about who you are? And what do you do?
So, Juliana Xavier here, in case you want to find me on Instagram, and I'm not related to the professor, okay.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 05:33
And though sometimes I feel like I'm an Axeman. So I'm a teacher and language coach. I teach general English and ESB, exams, business, English, you name it. I also teach German from A1 to B2. I specialise in and andragogy. Teaching adults is something that really gives me great insight. And I'm passionate about it. Even though I'm a very good young learners teacher, I've had a lot of experience.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 06:09
Young learners are much more difficult at times, aren't they?
Oh, my God. Yeah. But yeah, different challenges, right, different challenges. And so almost all of my clients are Brazilians based around the world with very specific needs. I hold a CELTA, a CPE and a specialist degree in English teaching. I am a certified neurolanguage coach just like you. Yes. I have worked in various contexts, including course and materials development, especially in medical English. And I hold Yeah, I hold a bachelor's degree in the arts. And I Yeah, exactly. I love to see people's reactions when I say that, because it's completely different, right.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 07:02
But it means you have multi year multi skilled, multi talented teacher.
Totally. I feel like I'm multipotential you know, and it's really nice to be like that. It's also very confusing sometimes.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 07:18
So it's safe to say that you're very qualified to talk about teaching English, then.
Yes, and especially to talk about procrastinating.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 07:28
Okay, well, well, that's definitely going to be the topic we'll talk about. And in a moment, I'm going to ask you why we chose that topic. So before we begin our conversation today, I'm going to start by asking a question that I ask everyone, what is a fun fact about you that you would like to share with the audience?
Okay, so please don't judge me.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 07:51
As if I would judge you. I absolutely
love Korean television dramas.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 07:57
Oh, my gosh. Can you understand Korean?
Um, you know, that's, that's something that I have to do as a project. Because I have watched so many, that I'm kind of getting some words, you know, I already get the meaning from context. And this is really, it's really fun. I think it's beautiful. It's a beautiful language. It's very interesting culture.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 08:26
Okay, that's amazing. And I guess you did you watch squid games then or squid game? I should? I haven't,
because I like the silly ones. Okay, so
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 08:35
not that violent, bloody ones.
Not at all. The reason that reason why I watch Korean dramas, is the fact that it can be very, very silly, very simple, you know, and very romantic. And this is where I, you know, get in touch with my romantic side, because I'm not a very romantic person. So that's how
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 08:58
I say thanks to Korean. It brings out your romantic side.
Totally. My husband, though.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 09:07
You know, I'm so happy that this is your fun fact. Because I have a few Korean clients who listened to the podcast. They will love this. So thank you. So
of the guys. I love Korean culture. I'm making parts to you right now.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 09:25
Goodness me. All right. Thank you for sharing that fun fact. It's very, very good. I like it. And now that we've got that one out of the way, what I'd like to talk about now is because I know we had this conversation before we decided what we were going to do the podcast on. We talked about a couple of different topics that we could address as neuro language coaches. So I'm interested to hear from you. What are the reasons why you chose to talk about procrastination as a topic for today's podcast episode.
I think the decision to talk About this was based on a couple of reasons. And first and foremost, I think it's related to the fact to the fact that people treat procrastination very lightly, you know, so people don't think this is actually a problem. They consider it like a normal behaviours, sometimes I will procrastinate, sometimes I won't, you know, and then they don't actually look at the issue and deal with it. You know, so for me, this is one of the main reasons we chose this topic together. And also, because I don't know if you know this, but I think there when we think about the number of people that procrastinate, I mean, there there is scientific research saying that one in five people procrastinate says that they procrastinate. And when you look at the student population, which is basically us teachers, always students, right, and our clients, that's half that's one in two.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 11:11
Hmm, that's a lot of people procrastinating and what's happening as a result of people, procrastinating?
Um, you know, there are several consequences related to procrastinating. But I think the most important one that we should mention is that people feel bad about themselves. You know, they feel like they are unable to accomplish things. And that takes away from their well being.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 11:46
Yeah. And do you? Is this something is procrastination, something that you experience as a teacher being one of the most challenging things that your students come across?
Yes. Among other things, what happens is, I feel like they when they are unaware that they are procrastinating when they are taking when they simply show up in classes, and they don't have anything prepared, you know, they haven't done the work at home. They they simply put off doing what needs to be done in order to learn the language, you know, it's a it's self sabotaging is procrastinating, you know, and when I, when they come to me when they when they see me in our sessions, then I feel like they are ashamed of not having done the work. And I even have had clients that have given up the course completely.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 13:01
Because they felt like they couldn't reach their target or
because they were so caught up in their procrastination in their self sabotage and in their fears. Right, because this is a main factor they were avoiding dealing with the issue, which was they weren't able to, to work towards the goals, you know, goals can change, right? They can always change, we can adapt, we can, you know, start over. But the problem is that when a person is really procrastinating to a point, in which they will just give up, that becomes a major issue.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 13:49
Yeah, absolutely. And I know you know, you and I have just recently just talked about before we hit record about also feeling procrastination, as well as a teacher or you know, in your own personal life. So can you tell us a little bit about that and how that's helped you to see the patterns and the things that you notice.
So one of the most important things when you feel like you are procrastinating is to have the awareness of it. If you're not aware that you are procrastinating you literally cannot help yourself. Right? So you will just simply postpone things not do certain things, and you will be none the wiser. You don't know that you are really engaging in procrastination. And a lot of people think that procrastinate, procrastinating is doing nothing, when in fact, I have a huge tendency to procrastinate doing other stuff. Yeah, you know, other stuff that needs to be done. You know, for example, I go I just go I have a a tonne of work to do, but I go wash the dishes or, you know, I don't know, wash, clean the toilet, you know, things. Yeah, you it's a it's a, it's it's really avoidance of the tasks that I have at hand that I should be doing. And I'm doing something else instead that is also important, but it's not essential. You see. So when we when we talk about procrastination, we have to understand that procrastination is the postponement of an action. And the result is usually the result of that postponement is usually negative for you, it has a negative impact on you. So
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 15:45
I'm glad that you mentioned that procrastination can also be about avoidance of tasks. But it also can be about doing other things. Because I think that even myself as well, I struggle with doing one task, but then getting distracted by doing other things and not having that focus and not staying on task. And that definitely comes up for learning languages, for example, learning French, but also for for doing work as well. And so that kind of leads me into the next question, which is talking about goals? And how do you feel about goals. And the reason that I wanted to ask about this is because I have struggled with goals myself, I know that a lot of people that I've worked with before have struggled with goals. And I think that some people find it really hard to see their big goal, or to know what's the big picture or the big dream, or sometimes people don't even know how to make a big dream. So how do we how do you see goals and how we can make goals as a way of overcoming procrastination?
So, um, I feel exactly the same way you do. Yeah, towards goals? Yes. Because I think that devising goals for ourselves can be really challenging, you know, especially if you want to improve or succeed in an area that you are not too familiar with, you know, so in that case, I do suggest to y'all who's listening to us to look for an expert in the area to help you set realistic goals, because, like my top problem in devising goals for myself, and I see that in other people as well. And probably you as well, is to actually set realistic goals. You know, things that you're actually going to do.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 17:44
Yeah, so rather than setting that big ultimate, this is my big goal, we have to make them a bit more realistic.
Yet, we have to make them realistic. It's not like we cannot have a long term goal. You know, like I'm working towards, oh, for example, now, I want to specialise in cognitive psychology. So I'm working towards that goal. Am I going to achieve it tomorrow? No way, I'm going to achieve it maybe by the end of next year. You know, once I finished my specialisation, and everything goes, well, you know, hopefully. And so I have that goal that is for the next year. And that's a long term goal for me. So how am I going to work every day towards that. And that's how you break your goal, your main goal into things that you can do to get there. So the first thing is to study is to get time on my very busy schedule to study, you know, to to get all the assignments done. So I have to prepare for that. It's not just, oh, yeah, I'm going to do a course next year. And then by the end of the year, I'm going to have, you know, a new certification. And then I don't make time for that that's not realistic. You see what I mean by realistic and unrealistic. And what I see from people when they come and tell me, Juliana, I want to go from A to to be one in three months. Well, right,
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 19:24
yeah. All the time, or I want to be, you know, a goal might be quite broad, like, I want to be fluent, or I want to be, I want to have a really good vocabulary, but there's no focus within that goal or there's no, okay, I want to be able to be be better at doing this. It's I just want this which is a big, unknown.
And so listen to this. Both our examples are different types of unrealistic goals, because in my example, it was not realistic because of the timeframe. And yours is not realistic because the person actually doesn't have a goal. Yeah, right. Yeah, they don't have a specific goal.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 20:10
And that's why, exactly, and that makes it really difficult and challenging to know exactly what you need to do in between. So the example that I often get is, I want to build a better vocabulary. But they don't know what the vocabulary is for, or they're not making specific goals for the, for what the purpose is. So the objective might be, I want to be able to deliver a presentation really well to these particular types of clients. And when you know, that more specific goal or that objective, then you can work backwards and say, What am I going to do in the meantime, to get me to towards that objective. The other thing that I think which is important, which we were just talking about before, is the cultural difference, the the challenge of in the news in the media, we see all these productivity apps and the ways that you should be doing this and you should be, you know, getting the most out of your day, and that can be quite influenced by American culture. And we were talking about how that's not necessarily the same in Brazil. Can you tell me a little bit more about that, and what you feel about that as well?
Okay, so first of all, I had to learn, actually, what goals were. And I have learned that very recently. Okay, yeah, it's not really part of our culture. You know, I think that, well, at least from where I'm from my my family background, you know, I don't see that happening. It's something like, our culture is very driven by instant gratification. Right. So we would rather go to the barbecue on the weekend than staying in and studying towards, you know, learning more search for a certain goal. Yeah, much more, much more social. And we and for us, it we value social interaction, you know, and it's this this relaxed. Of course, Brazil is a huge country. And that doesn't apply to the whole of Brazil, because we have other parts, parts of Brazil, that are very, very influenced by other cultures that immigrated to Brazil. In the past, but, you know, I feel like in general, we being a high context, culture, we have a tendency to value more the process of doing things. And actually, the end result, of course, the end result is important. So we don't actually learn how to work towards a goal, or even goal setting, not even in college, which is critical.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 22:59
So is it is it more so that you would say throw yourself into a task without kind of knowing where you're going?
Yeah, very much. So. Okay, very much so.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 23:09
And do you see that as an important thing for your, your clients, I guess is to know what their roadmap is know where they're heading, in order to overcome that idea of procrastination,
very much. So, so, here is where all of these these theories, these productivity theories and behavioural theories play an important part, because at the end of all things, if you want to change the direction or sorry, if you want to work towards a goal, if you have something solid that you need to achieve, you need the tools to get there, you cannot just go blindly, you know. So when I am working with with Brazilians, what happens is, I know that they need some flexibility from me. And they also need me to hold them accountable. So accountability is important. Some some people, Tara, they actually rely on a teacher or a coach or a tutor or mentor to actually help them focus, you know, and stability. Exactly. So I think that it's important for me, for example, with exercise. I wouldn't have I would absolutely not exercise if I, I will because yeah, I'm not exercising at the moment, because I don't have a teacher Okay. An instructor, let's say, right, so yeah, this is this is how I feel it goes for Brazilians, and like I said, we don't have this culture of goal setting. And we have, and we come from a society that is pretty much top down. So hierarchy plays a big part, in our culture in our society. So in this is why it's so hard, for example, for us, and for me personally, to learn how to self regulate, because it's it's like this when we were children, our parents told us what to do all the time. And if you deviated from that something bad would happen. So that's that's the average. You know, that's how people are brought up here. And I wasn't raised to ask questions, you know, yeah. And so now that I actually, when I became an adult, and I had to self regulate, I have to take care of my own routine and my own obligations, like for me, because I'm a woman, it's a little bit better, because my mom actually told me that I had to clean the house and and I had to organise, you know. Patriot patriarchy, right. Yeah. But my mom did not tell my brothers to do that. Okay, huh. Yeah. Yes, you see, this is this is how it goes down here. So that takes a toll. Yeah, when it comes to having those long term goals, I have a huge difficulty in setting goals or even visualise where I want to be in five years included. I actually hate that question. When people ask you, where do you see yourself in five years?
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 26:44
I don't know. I don't know where I'm going to be next
idea. Yeah, I have no idea. But that seems to be, for example, when we are when I'm training people for job interviews, you know, I'm helping them prepare for job interviews, not training, actually helping them prepare it because, you know, preparation is key to be a little bit more comfortable using a foreign language when you are in such a stressful situation. Right. So when this this question seems to come up in a lot of job interviews, and then I asked, I asked my clients, where do you see yourself in five years? And they say the same thing as I do? Like, I have no idea, you know, or if it's a very driven person, they will probably say, Yeah, I think I want to have this and that development in my career, you know, career wise, I want to be this, this and that. But you know, most people don't have like a very clear vision of that.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 27:44
Yeah. And I think that's really important, given that, in English speaking countries, we are much lower context, we also are much more egalitarian. And these are the sorts of questions that are so part of our culture. I mean, particularly in Australia, we're so influenced by American culture, that having a goal is such an important thing. In America, it's important to have a goal. So I think it's, it's really important to know that that's a part of the culture, when you're trying to understand how do you overcome the procrastination, particularly if you're going to live and work in these cultures, or you're going to be working with people from these cultures? Because they're going to have a very different perspective from you. So thinking about my audience, so creatives and architects, what challenges do you think they face as language learners and creatives? And I know you're a very creative person too. So you might resonate with a lot of the feelings that some of my audience will have as well.
Yes, totally. I work also as a freelance illustrator and photographer, so you know, there is so this is kind of controversial. Okay. I cannot tell you my opinion. tell you my opinion, and then you tell me yours. Okay. So, there there is recent research about procrastination as something that can actually increase creativity, it could have a positive impact on being more creative. And, you know, I even brought a quote by Agatha Christie, the queen of crime, right? She says in her alibi, autobiography, invention, in my opinion, arises directly from idleness, possibly also from laziness.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 29:49
Well, it's panels.
Yeah, and I find this very interesting and I don't see how. So here's my here's the big question. If we think that idleness and laziness is a synonym to procrastinating, right, if we think that, you know, because I think it's quite worrisome that we call having free time, and being idle and doing nothing, I find it very worrisome that we call it procrastination.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 30:33
Yeah, because it's important to have downtime sometimes. Right?
Exactly. You know, what does it tell us about? What does it tell about us as a society, that we cannot have free time that every time we have free time, we are procrastinating? This is crazy.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 30:48
It is crazy, actually interesting that you're saying this, because I was listening to Oprah soul sessions with Brene. Brown, and she's talking about her new book. And they're talking a lot about that, like, why do we create this society of, of no downtime? Or that or not? Being able to place language or to be able to explain that feeling of when you are doing nothing? You know, why does it have to have a purpose that you can just be doing nothing for the sake of doing nothing. And that can actually stimulate more ideas, more creative ideas?
Yeah, and I do, I don't believe that it's kind of, I'm going to give you an example. So you have an architect that has a creative block, he's working on a project, he has a creative block, he has allocated the morning to work on that project, and he just reaches a dead end. Okay, so what's, so that person just says, Okay, so I'm going to have a brain break. And I'm going to go for a walk. And then if I have any ideas, meanwhile, I'm going to come back and work on that project, again, like by the end of the morning, but this person also has a very tight schedule in the afternoons, he has some, some meetings, a class with you, for example, a session with you, and he cannot postpone that too much. And then he makes the choice of actually going for a walk. Right. But in the end, that's not really procrastinating, that's making a sound choice that will impact positively on his work. Because if he just sits down, and trice and continue working on the project, he will probably do something that he won't be proud of.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 32:46
Yeah, that's really important thing actually thinking about thinking about that. That's, that's almost the most essential piece of information to the puzzle, isn't it? It's that being able to have the wisdom and, and the reassurance that you can actually walk away from something, and that it's going to be the best thing for you.
Yeah, and it's a choice. It's not procrastinating.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 33:13
For sure. So it's, it's actually knowing, like thinking about that podcast, it's about knowing what to, you know, what language or how to label that experience, as a, as a real, proper experience for ourselves. And even I know myself that I always say to myself, I need to make myself run more or walk more, because I know that each time I do that, if I'm trying to do a task, I always come back with fresh ideas or new thoughts or other ways of being able to do something, and it makes what I'm doing better.
Yet. And if you think about language learning, what do you think it's more productive, like you you sit down and you study 15 minutes, but with quality, you know, like, you sit down, you focus, you set up your alarm, you are completely absorbed by absorbed by reading or you know, something specific. And then you pause so that your brain can process that it makes no sense to me personally, to actually spend hours and hours and hours doing the same type of task. You know, it can get really stressful in studying is the same. There is no like, I'm going to yet I'm going to learn for example, I'm learning Spanish right now. So if I sit down and study Spanish for two hours, what is that going to do to you know, my learning? Am I really going to be learning Well, for the whole two hours? Not at all, I won't be able to call I won't be able to focus for 15 minutes, like, my, one of my kids just jumps on my lap. And that's, that's where my focus goes, you know? Yeah, I have just like you, you mentioned before, I find it very hard to focus on one task for a long. So for me, it helps a lot to do very, you know, small tests in terms of time, so that I can have a varied routine, and a less stressful one.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 35:36
Yeah. And I think that's really important that you mentioned that too, because that comes from self awareness. So having a self awareness, like what you talked about in the beginning, is being able to recognise when you procrastinate, and how you're going to overcome that procrastination, because we all experience it differently. So I know that you have some really great tips, and I want to ask you to share them with the audience. So what would be your top four tips for overcoming procrastination, when it comes to language learning or doing anything I imagine.
So I have four things that I applied to myself, in every aspect of my life, including language learning, which is organised, the first one is number one. So you have to have a system that works for you. Right, and a system that you can go back to, if things go south. So when you are moody, when you don't want to work, you know, when you are having when you're experience experiencing something emotional, right, and you lose yourself, you get a little bit lost with your routine, it needs to be something easy to go back to, you know, not something so complicated that I will feel completely devastated. If I have to stop for a couple of days, you know, organising is something that really works. Having a schedule having slots, I have slots on my schedule, to take a nap after lunch
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 37:16
on my belt.
No buddy takes them.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 37:21
That's the best idea ever. Yeah. Do you take it every day?
Every single day? That is so good.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 37:29
I love this idea. I think I might have to implement this idea.
So yeah, this is a commitment to myself, you know, like, of course, if there is some if something happens, I might see a client at that time, but it will be extreme, it will need to be something, you know, very important for me to, you know, change my schedule. And that this is what I mean, you know, like creating certain commitments with yourself, like, for example, the study of the language. So, it's much, much better for a learner to focus for 20 minutes a day, than to actually like taking one day and trying to study two hours, you know, yeah. So, yeah. So that's why, yeah, that's number one. The second one is to be real. And that goes for the for the goals, right, which we already discussed this, you have to be realistic with your goals. Otherwise, there goes nothing, right. So it's, it's really unfair to yourself to set goals that you will not be able to achieve. So be real. Yeah, third one behind.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 38:45
Like, right, yeah, yeah, kind to yourself.
Definitely. Because things are not perfect life happens. We, we have learned this in the weirdest possible way with the pandemic, right. So if you are not kind to yourself, as in, you will sit down and revise your goals, review everything, you know, like, if something is not working with your routine, change it. And yeah, I think that being kind to yourself, not pushing yourself too much. Like See, what's your, you know, what are your boundaries and respect those boundaries? Don't Don't keep pushing them, you know, like, it's just not healthy, mentally, you know? Sure.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 39:34
And, you know, if something happens if you, you know, as we say, fall off the bandwagon or you, you can't do something, you've got to be kind to yourself and say it's okay, I fell off, okay, I'm going to somehow get back and I guess that's why when we were talking about that, having that plan in the beginning and knowing what your goal is, it's knowing how you can get back to that, that road or that that path and having that plan. In the beginning, can really help you to know where you're going.
Yeah, for sure. Also, when you are afraid of the thing you need to accomplish, you know, a lot of people struggle with fear of communicating in a foreign language, you know, this, you have probably experienced it with French. I know that right with the other languages that I speak. And it's it's kind of nerve wracking, you know, to have to talk to people who's, who are native speakers, and you are all the time checking yourself, you are all the time. You know, I'm having like this, it's like a teleprompter from going in your head, like of everything that you say, you are thinking, Oh, my God, did I say it? Right? That I say, right, you know, so the generation does generates tension and fear and anxiety. And this is something that that takes work and takes kindness. You know, I cannot tell myself, oh, yeah, my accent is rubbish, you know. And and I'm not going to speak in front of people, because I hate it, you know. And it's, it's facing those fears. with kindness, you know, understanding that that's those negative thoughts, and those, you know, self deprecating thoughts that we sometimes have about ourselves is it's it's part of the process, you know, and it's something that we have to work with ourselves kindly. To overcome.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 41:46
Yeah, I think too, and it's really something that I've thought a lot about recently is that fear. So knowing what the fear is, and doing it anyway, but before that, is knowing, you know, where is the feeling in your body? What are you experiencing? What exactly are you fearful of? Because, essentially, what we find is that when we delve deeper, what we're fearing, is not what we initially think, is the fear. So we have to understand what the fear is to be able to label it to know what it is to then rationalise it and say, well, actually, that's an irrational fear. And I can, I can actually overcome that. And so knowing yourself and being self aware, and also being kind to yourself, as you say, is so important.
Yeah. And the last tip, you just said it, self awareness.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 42:38
Sorry, I didn't mean to steal it from you. Know, it's common sense, it's common sense. Because, yes,
the more aware you are of all of the behaviours and tendencies that you have, you know, the more capable you are of dealing and overcoming. So, that's it, thank
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 43:01
you, those tips were really good. And I think actually, as you were saying them, I was thinking to myself, I really want to make a goal with my Portuguese learning now, because at the moment, I feel like I'm learning but it's, it's I'm not really working towards an achievable goal. It's just okay, I'm going to learn Portuguese. Okay, now, I feel like, it's time to actually sit down and do that, so that I know what I'm working towards. And then I can watch your videos on Instagram and understand what you're saying.
Yeah, you know, the funny thing is, I thought about making those videos in English, but I think my audience is mainly Brazilian, and, and some of them have are beginners and intermediate beginners, you know, to intermediate students, and they wouldn't, they would miss the concept. And sometimes I really talk about those concepts of why do you why you procrastinate, why, you know, I, I, one of the goals with my Instagram page is to actually raise awareness of the learning process, you know, yeah. So in order to really help people because I feel this is the feeling I get with Brazilians in general, and myself included, we are not taught how to learn. We don't know how to learn, we don't know how to begin, where to go, how to start, how to, you know, do it as a how to do it as a process, you know, so I feel like, Yeah,
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 44:37
this is something that I have spoken about a lot, in particular with other teachers and also with my my own clients, is that when I tell somebody to do something, I don't, I'm not just telling them to do it, or I will tell them why it's important and I think that's what is missing a lot from education or Helping somebody is getting them to understand why they have to do it is the most essential because then they then also they can be independent themselves rather than you saying to them, okay, I want you to do this. But you can tell them why it's important. And then they sort of know the parameters, or, you know, what's, where's the leeway? Where can I change certain things? So I think that's a really important aspect. So teaching people how to learn. It's not just, it's not just giving them vocabulary and giving them the rules, but it's telling them how to learn, which is also important.
Yeah. And I feel I feel like, for me, the best experience that I have, in my sessions with my clients is when a client really takes responsibility for his learning process, you know, I think this makes such a huge difference in a positive impact in his in their learning, right. So for me, that's it. That's exactly what you're saying. It's giving them the tools to actually, you know, become more independent and rely on themselves more.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 46:12
Yeah, that's so important. And I also see that that success, or somebody going from not feeling as competent to feeling really confident, is there's a higher likelihood that you're going to feel that if you do take more responsibility for the learning. And you and you get excited. And you're curious about things because you start to see things from a different perspective.
Yeah, for sure. For sure. It becomes an investigation. Yeah. becomes an investigative, investigative, how do you say that
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 46:44
investigative investing, an investigation process.
And process, it becomes a process, which is so much fun, which can be so rewarding.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 46:57
Yeah. And this is, it's really interesting that you mentioned that because as a teacher in Australia, when I was trained to be a teacher, we were trained to teach people to be more like that to be more, try and find the answers for themselves, you know, constructors, constructors, their constructivism, where you're, you're creating the learning as well. So teaching in France has been more of a challenge, because I can see it's, it's the stuff is given to them. And so they don't know necessarily how to go and find that information by themselves, because they're not used to that kind of education. So as a teacher, it's been a challenge at times to be okay. You have to be the person helping me here, not me just giving you the information.
Yeah. And this is the same in Brazil, because the Brazilian school model is inspired by the French model that, yeah, and then what happens here, and so much so that, I think up until the 70s, the kids had French in school instead of English. Wow. Yeah.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 48:05
That doesn't surprise me, though. Yeah. So
what happens here is that when you go to university terror, it's a nightmare. It's a nightmare. Yeah. And you have to, then you have to suddenly develop all the skills that you need for learning and becoming a researcher. That's crazy, you know,
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 48:26
whereas we, we are taught that from the very beginning to think for ourselves to be more critical thinkers, and, and a lot more, there's a lot more focus on that in education in, in Australia, even when I taught in England as well, it was a very similar philosophy in how we teach kids. So yeah, it's interesting. It's interesting to see the differences between different cultures and how the education system can actually have an impact on how you learn languages or how you just learn anything in general. So
and then you can imagine the levels of procrastination that people will have in college.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 49:08
Oh, wow, I can't imagine how avoidance Yeah, people avoiding what needs to be done. But yeah, it's an interesting challenge. Procrastination, I think we all experience it differently. And we have to, essentially, I guess what you're getting at too is that we have to find our own way. We have to know what's important for us to do and not everyone's going to have the same way of overcoming it. So after our conversation today, we've touched on a lot of different things which have been very good and so useful. I think people are really going to find this conversation very useful. What would you like people to take away from this conversation? What's the number one thing you want them to remember?
Can I have two things you
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 49:53
have two you can have three? As many as you like,
so just two, that's enough. Okay. The first One is reassurance because everybody procrastinates there isn't a single person that does not procrastinate on a daily basis. Okay. Okay. And I feel
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 50:10
really good now.
Yeah. Okay great. And, and that being aware of procrastination is key to, you know, procrastinating less because there is no no procrastination there is just procrastinating less, and being more aware of the moments in which you procrastinate. That's, that's, you know, that's what I wish people would start thinking about from now on.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 50:37
All right, well, they're great two great leaving tips. So thank you for that. Well, thank you, Juliana. I've had a great time chatting to you. Thank you so much for your wisdom, your insight and your great conversation and if anyone wants to find you, where can they find you? Where's the best place
so they can find me on Instagram? I'm more active their LinkedIn so my Instagram is Juliana dot Xavier Sa, so it's a little complicated. I think you're gonna and also my website, which is also my name.com. So JulianaXaviersa.com.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 51:21
Okay, great. And
Just a sec for the Brazilians listening.
Tara Cull - ArchiEnglish 51:31
Well, that brings us to the end of the episode. Thanks again Juliana for the fantastic conversation. And also for the inspiration I'm feeling very excited about the year ahead. And as always, thanks to you for listening to the think being podcast. If you enjoyed the show, make sure you subscribe for more English learning tips for architects for creative language learners, and share this episode with someone who might find it helpful. Remember that you can find the free transcript with key vocabulary and expressions and archienglish.com/podcast and I will see you very soon.
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