Jun 07, 2020
We look in awe at people who do and accomplish things we desire. It’s fascinating to see someone speak one language with you and speak another with someone else.
Why stay in awe when you can also be that person? You can also pick up a second language. It’s never too late to start.
Learning a language isn’t as hard as many think. It’s all about practice, repetition, and enjoying the process.
If the chance to speak another beautiful language isn’t enough, there are benefits of being bilingual too. You can find out about them in the next five minutes.
As a bilingual, you will subconsciously use these benefits in your everyday life seamlessly.
Benefits of Being Bilingual
Being bilingual has its fair share of perks that will benefit you no matter how old or young you are. Did you know over 40% of people in the world are bilingual? The same amount of people are estimated to be monolingual, or speak one language.
Is that you? Maybe not after today. There is plenty of research being done on the benefits of learning a new language. You may find these benefits to be more than enough to pick up a book or talk to someone and get started.
It Increases You Job Marketability
Adding more than one language to your resume will help boost your marketability to potential employers. Many businesses serve customers who don’t speak English and require assistance. Business owners know this and offer additional resources for multilingual consumers.
If you can speak French, Spanish, or Chinese, you may find yourself deciding between more jobs than you can handle.
You Get Paid More to Do the Same Thing
Once you have the job, you can expect to have a little more change in your pockets. It’s a kind reward that shows how much of an asset your second language is.
You can expect a 5-20% increase in your salary. This will depend on where you live and what company you work for.
It Broadens Your Perspective and Changes You
Being able to speak another language helps you understand the cultural background of a group better. This understanding comes when you see things differently. It may feel as if you’ve become a new person.
Maybe you’re more patient or choose to be more vocal towards situations you would have once left alone. This new perspective can help you with a new group of friends, family, or in the workplace.
Here’s an interesting finding: some people “frame-shift” their perspective in another language. They will be more assertive or loving when they speak one language over another. Have you ever noticed this? It’s not so much as a personality change as it is adaptation.
Enhanced Personal Skills
Bilinguals hold more information in their brain. They must constantly choose what words they want to use when switching languages. Eventually, this becomes second nature.
Being bilingual improves personal skills such as multitasking, decision-making, and problem-solving. Bilinguals are able to process information more easily and efficiently than monolinguals.
You’re Able to Learn Additional Languages Quicker
Being bilingual makes you better apt to learn a third or fourth language. Learning a second language allows you to gain better aptitude and understanding more languages. This is all thanks to experience.
Allows Kids to Have an Academic Advantage
One advantage kids have over adults is that they can pick up a new language faster.
Speaking another language stimulates their overall learning potential. A bilingual child outperforms other kids their age in academics. Especially in problem-solving and creativity.
On average, college students score higher on SAT and ACT college entrance exams.
Even with these obvious advantages, America’s education system falls short. Only 20% of kids learn a foreign language in school.
Even the busiest parent can fill this educational gap thanks to online tools. You can, for example, teach your child Spanish at home. French and German are also popular languages to teach children. Maybe you missed out on the chance to learn a language in your youth, but you can do it with your kids.
Increases Social and Cultural Nuances
Knowing a second language allows you to interact with a particular culture better. You will understand the nuances and the meaning behind certain words.
This is usually hard to explain to other people who don’t speak another person’s language. This is something translators can never accomplish. You’ll finally be able to laugh at a line you previously didn’t get in a conversation, song, or movie.
Makes Travel and Assimilation Easier
If you decide to travel to another country, knowing the language of that country helps. There is less of a language barrier because you can speak the country’s tongue, even if its a little bit. Speaking with locals won’t seem scary, and you can do more independently. Being bilingual will be less costly too as you won’t need a guide.
This is especially helpful for people who decide to live in another country. It makes the process of assimilation easier.
It’s Anti-Aging For the Brain
Your brain loves learning. Think of it as food for the brain. Being bilingual means you can maintain cognitive memory and function as you get older. The first thing most people notice as they get older is memory fog and decreased cognitive flexibility.
The anti-angling effect and has been found to help slow the onset of neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s or dementia.
You don’t have to wait to get old. Your memory game will change. You may finally be able to start to remember peoples’ names.
There’s a strong correlation between being bilingual and how it boosts confidence. You can do more which is exciting in itself. That same confidence also happens in the dating world. Even your date is bound to find the fact you speak a second language more attractive.
There’s Power in Language
You can even out the playing field better when you learn a second language. Being able to do and understand something you previously couldn’t is invigorating. It makes you feel powerful.
There are also lesser “cool” reasons we really want to learn a language.
For one, you’ll have fewer people able to talk behind your back.
Maybe you want to learn how to insult someone in another language just because. Isn’t that everybody?
Or maybe you just want to ask for directions when you’re lost and be able to find the restroom in a foreign country. That’s victory at its finest.
The world’s your oyster. What are you waiting for? If you don’t understand the benefits of being bilingual by now, you never will!
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