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Hi there, I think we all know how difficult it is to become an interpreter. It feels like I've been studying already for years, but I still don't feel comfortable in the booth while interpreting. Not due to the stress, but due to the fact that I don't manage to fulfill the expectations from the teachers and I don't interpret well enough. There is always something new that brings me to a near breakdown and I ask myself if all this is really worth it...I'm afraid to say, but I don't know if this is still the job I want to do in future (because I feel I'm not good enough...) How did you deal with mental (weekly?) breakdowns...Motivation tips are welcomed! Can't wait for your answers! :-)

asked 24 Jan, 17:01

Woaz's gravatar image


edited 24 Jan, 17:04

Try to set weekly intermediate goals for yourself, with the help of your trainer. These goals should be realistic and appropriate for the stage of your training. Write down any positive comment from your trainer (students tend to only write down what they have to improve on, but never what they have achieved).

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answered 25 Jan, 06:37

Camille%20Collard's gravatar image

Camille Collard

Hi Camille, thanks for your quick reply! Unfortunately, we don't get too much personal help from our trainers...We just go to class, interpret, and then get feedback on our interpretations...which is mostly negative because we don't even get the topic so that we can prepare something beforehand... and the feedback we get is not really helpful as it always enters too much into detail (wrong translation of words)...and the feedback "I don't know how I can help you" doesn't motivate me at all...feels like I'm a hopeless case... Ok, there is a lot of room for criticizing the teaching methods, but it won't help...I have to deal with those teachers anyways... So I need some tactics for my own :-)

(25 Jan, 07:02) Woaz

You can still set goals for yourself without the help of your trainers. Ask your classmates, read books or articles on feedback in interpreting and do a lot of practice groups with your classmates where you give structured feedback based on your specific goals. Buy Andy Gillies book: A Student's Practice Book, it's a lifesaver (if you're short on money, buy it with your classmates). Don't be afraid to ask questions to your trainers: "what can I do to improve specific thing that they mentioned in their feedback?" or "do you have specific exercices that I can do to be better at specific skill next time?". Also an unrelated tip: avoid criticizing your trainers in a public forum, interpreting is a tiny world and they're most probably your future colleagues.

(26 Jan, 05:42) Camille Collard

ok thank you for the tips! :) the thing is...a good interpreter is not a good teacher at the same time...but as I've won't change and I will have to deal with any teacher... well I hope I'll find some motivation during semester break

(26 Jan, 06:26) Woaz
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answered 01 Feb, 04:02

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question asked: 24 Jan, 17:01

question was seen: 936 times

last updated: 01 Feb, 04:02

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