Hobbies are a place of escape.
They are a place where we can be “ourselves” with like minded people and just nerd out about the stuff we LOVE to do. Everyone needs that because the toll life takes is never easy.
A crazy hobby I started at 13 years old was language learning. It actually looked more like reading Wikipedia articles for hours on end and watching youtube videos on random topics. I can be curious about a random language because it has no known relatives, or discuss the intricacies of random slang from the English-speaking world.
But here’s a question: how in the world does that benefit anyone? It’s great to know and can be used as conversation starters, but really, how in the world is it useful?
Growing up for a lot of people means learning many a skill from Dad.
For me, that was how to connect with people. I learned that there are two life truths:
- It’s not hard to make a good impression.
- Recite one random fact, or say a word you’re “not supposed to know” and people will love you forever.
The month of March was awesome because I was busy with another hobby of mine: teaching. I got to share my ideas with two church groups, two classes in my former high school and at George Washington University.
Asian immigrant kids now understand their parents a bit better and high schoolers are ready to go learn languages. GWU had a different task of figuring out how to love the world a bit more.
At least my time was productive. 😃
How did this happen?
Keeping in touch with people always does wonders. This was no exception. I met Angelo De Leo (the GW Polyglots group founder) in Greece at the Polyglot Conference last year, and we kept in touch.
If you think that this is a talk revolving around languages, it’s not. I focus on simply connecting with people on a level that they will understand and appreciate.
Instead of talking about what I discussed, it’s yours FREE to watch, kindly edited by Angelo himself.
If you’re looking for details, stories, and all that fun stuff, they’re all in the video.
Loving out Loud Through Language
Short on time?
Here’s the summary of how I believe you can reach people with love through your talents:
1. Screw your comfort zones.
2. Make Time
3. Ask Questions
4. Be Contagious
If you just take a look at the list, it probably doesn’t make sense.
Regardless of if you speak another language, the rules stay the same. In fact, I don’t think it’s necessary to speak another language, but since I was speaking to a group of language learners I used it as a springboard.
If you can only say even ONE phrase in another language, people will be impressed. Smiles will appear and handshakes all round. The goal is to connect with what other people know and make them feel at home. Making others feel at home will result in them acting as if they were.
Comfort zones are limiting. If you care for people, time is the best gift you can give. Asking questions ensures a conversation. Being contagious makes sure passion and change doesn’t die with you.
Here’s your FREE eBook that explains it all or watch the presentation. Once you do either, it’ll all make sense.
That’s not all. I decided to go directly live and have a Q&A interview with Angelo and give a more personal look at what I’m talking about which was tons of fun.
The questions answered:
- How did your language learning journey motivate you to become who you are today/want to speak about what you did yesterday?
Short Answer: Hobbies can be pretty self-centered rather than world focused.
How did you originally enter in the polyglot community?
Short Answer: Tons and tons of YouTube. Oh, and Wikipedia.
What do you think is the more rewarding or significant part of learning foreign languages?
Short Answer: Seeing people smile.
Too short? All the details are in the videos.
Everyone needs love.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re talking to high schoolers, adults or kids, the point is, everyone needs love. It’s our job as human beings to be vessels of it. Relationships suck without it.
Maybe you need better conversation starters, or didn’t realize that love isn’t simply romantic. Point is, we all have a lot to learn. If you want some extra motivation and advice check out 5 Ted Talks to help you have deeper conversations.
Seeing faces full of hope as I spoke to all these different groups made everything worth it.
People are hungry, people want change.
People will change, they need you to lead the way.
Let me know your thoughts on the talk and if you have better ideas to love out loud down below!