BAD : I almost have forgotten what she looks like.
GOOD : I have almost forgotten what she looks like.
BAD : The suitcase almost was too heavy to lift.
GOOD : The suitcase was almost too heavy to lift.
BAD : My job takes me almost to every part of the world.
GOOD : My job takes me to almost every part of the world.
Almost comes immediately before the word it modifies: 'He was working in Hungary for almost ten years.'
DUBIOUS : Outside Japan, almost nobody speaks Japanese.
GOOD : Outside Japan, hardly anybody speaks Japanese.
Instead of saying almost no/nobody/never etc , it is more usual to say hardly any/anybody/ever etc: 'It was so early that there was hardly any traffic.' 'I hardly ever go to the cinema nowadays.'
BAD : She almost couldn't breathe.
GOOD : She could hardly breathe.
Almost is used with a negative verb when something does actually happen although, at the time, there is a strong possibility that it will not happen: 'I was feeling so tired that I almost didn't come.' 'The traffic was so heavy that she almost didn't get here in time.'
When you mean 'only a little' or 'only with great difficulty', use hardly : 'We hardly know each other.' 'She was so tired that she could hardly keep her eyes open.' 'I can hardly hear myself think.'