How do you stay motivated when working toward a long term language fluency goal? I think that everyone that has ever studied a language has always come to a point in their studies where they had a hard time staying motivated. This is something that happens when working towards many long term goals. I know that I have had this feeling with exercise, eating healthy, language learning and more.
Here are some of the things that I have found help when dealing specifically with language acquisition.
Try to use as much variety in your study material as possible. Don't feel like you have to finish a specific course or book if there is another course, article, book or anything else that pulls you toward it. I feel it is always best to put down what you are doing as soon as you are bored and look at the next piece of content. This is much harder at the beginning of the process when you are a complete beginner. It is however, natural for people to feel obligated to finish what they started. When learning a language, you are never really complete. it is a life long journey. So, if you are not liking a course or piece of content. Put it down and move to the next one. You can always go back to it if you feel you want to.
Find interesting content. This is going to vary from person to person. I love movies and sitcoms but, my favourite thing to learn with is music. I try to find music in my target language and translate the text. Sometimes listening to music can even feel like a break from learning. You get to sing along with the music which helps with speaking and you learn at the same time. It is an amazing tool. The only thing to be carful of is the slang used in the songs. If you can find an artist you like that speaks clearly with proper pronunciation that is obviously best.
Keep motivated using competition. One way is using games. One easy way is downloading apps that are setup like learning games. The ones that have leader boards with rankings and point you can earn completing tasks. Competing against your peers is a great way to stay motivated.
Another great way to stay motivated is find a study partner. Find anyone that is also working toward the same target language as you and schedule calls, meetups and study sessions to hold each other accountable. This motivates you to keep going because you don't want to let your partner down.
The 5th way you can stay motivated is learning about the culture. I particularly like learning about the food in any culture with using the target language to learn. For example I am learning Tagalog. I have my mother in-law that is from the Philippines teach my how to cook only using the target language. This is a great way to have fun and learn at the same time.