What does it take to learn English successfully?

5) "I am going to start using authentic English language resources as soon as possible." If you want to learn English like a winner, you need to start using original English media as soon as possible. What exactly does this mean? Well, a traditional learner of English uses ESL (English as a Second Language) resources, and the vast majority of these dumbed-down materials are dull, simplified, and artificial. They contain language most native speakers rarely use. Using ESL materials is a bit like swimming with a floating device. You get used to it, and then you never learn to swim freely.

Winners know that the sooner they expose themselves to authentic English the better. Your ultimate goal is to interact and communicate with native speakers. To get to that level, you have to expose yourself to the same language native speakers use, and since it is very unlikely that a native speaker of English will ever use any ESL materials, you should drop them as soon as possible, too. Abandon your ESL texts and CDs for the real stuff – media that are not only produced but also used by native speakers of English. The sooner you take this step the faster your English will improve. What's more, your general outlook on life will change too, because you will start to learn a whole new way of thinking.

If you follow these five basic principles, you will belong to the lucky minority: successful English learners.