We tend to learn better if we struggle a bit on our own, according to this article.
“Trying to figure something out on your own before getting help actually produces better results than having guidance from the beginning” says the byline to the article. I agree, and this has application to language learning.
I think we learn a language better if we train ourselves to notice what is happening in the language, if we discover the way the language works through struggling to understand. Very often the neat and tidy rules that describe what what should happen in the language go in one ear and out the other. After we have struggled with the language, and perhaps been confounded and confused by some of the structures, and perhaps noticed others, it becomes easier to understand the explanations, most of which are readily available these days in books and on the internet.
Once we have enough words to express our thoughts, we need to speak and write, to confront our weaknesses. As to when we start doing that, I think that depends on our availability of time, and our opportunities, and of course our personal likes and dislikes. I do think I should write more, though. I need to flounder a little more in my Czech, but I cannot resist just going back to reading things that interest me in the language.