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There are few things more beneficial in life than being able to speak a second language fluently, as this not only opens doors for education and professional advancement, but it also gives bilingual people a stronger confidence and ability to interact with people from different cultures.
If you’ve been considering picking-up a second language and are wondering what the advantages of being multilingual might be, then here are just a few reasons why speaking a second, or even a third, language will help you both now and in the future.
1. Increase job prospects
Employers are always looking for candidates that have a diverse range of talents. Being able to speak multiple languages is a great way to show what a unique, skilled candidate you are. In an increasingly globalized world the advantage of having employees who can easily interact with people from across the globe is becoming more and more necessary. By possessing the ability to speak a second language you will convey a significantly better impression to potential employers.
2. Study or live abroad
While you can study and live abroad without knowing the local language, you give yourself a huge advantage and opportunity if you do, as you will be able to interact with locals and have a deeper understanding of the local customs and culture. Being fluent in a second language will help you overcome language barriers and also give you the opportunity to work in that language, which wouldn’t be afforded if you couldn’t interact in the local workplace language.
3. Stave off Dementia and Alzheimer’s
Several studies have been conducted on the link between foreign language acquisition and dementia. It seems that the mental “muscle” that is developed by memorizing and understanding vocabulary, grammatical rules, sentence structure etc. in a foreign language. Learning a language also increases your ability to remember various lists and sequences, whether it’s names, grocery lists, or addresses, in old age.
4. Improve your first language skills
Learning a new language forces you to analyze and understand the roots of that language, something you had probably taken for granted in your native tongue. By learning to parse a foreign language you will quickly find that you better understand the construct of your native tongue, which means that you will find marked improvement in your diction, sentence structure, and more.
5. Impress others
Sure being multilingual will help you land a job, but it can also impress much more than just potential employers. Being able to speak a second language is a skill that is seen as desirable in both potential friends and partners.
The percentage of multilingual people in the world’s population is constantly increasing, so consider joining the trend by beginning to learn a new language today.