One of the most rewarding aspects of the human experience is our ability to connect with others. Being able to communicate with someone in his or her language is an incredible gift.
2. Advance Your Career
Language skills can be a significant competitive advantage that sets you apart from your monolingual peers. They are among the top eight skills required of all occupations—no matter your sector or skill level—and the demand for bilingual professionals is rising exponentially.
3. Feed Your Brain
The many cognitive benefits of learning languages are undeniable. People who speak more than one language have improved memory, problem-solving and critical-thinking skills, enhanced concentration, ability to multitask, and better listening skills.
4. Deepen Your Connection to Other Cultures
Language is the most direct connection to other cultures. Being able to communicate in another language exposes us to and fosters an appreciation for the traditions, religions, arts, and history of the people associated with that language.
5. See the World
Traveling as a speaker of the local language can revolutionise a trip abroad. While monolingual travellers are capable of visiting the same places, travellers who know more than one language are more easily able to navigate outside the tourist bubble and to connect and interact with the place and its people in a way that is often inaccessible to those without the language. Learning a second language also opens additional doors to opportunities for studying or working abroad.
6. Go to the Source
In a world of more than 6,000 spoken languages, we sometimes require translation, but speaking at least one additional language empowers us to access information that would otherwise be off-limits.
7. Become a Polyglot
Not only does learning a second language improve communication skills and multiply vocabulary in your first language—yes, really!—but research shows that it makes picking up additional languages a much easier feat, especially among children.
8. Boost Your Confidence
Any language learner can attest to making his or her share of mistakes while discovering a new language—often in front of an audience. It’s a necessary part of the learning process! Learning a language means putting yourself out there and moving out of your comfort zone. The upside is the amazing sense of accomplishment you’ll feel when conversing with someone in their native language.
9. Strengthen Your Decision Making
Studies show that decisions made in your second language are more reason-driven than those made in your native language.
10. Gain Perspective
As we explore a new language and culture, we naturally draw comparisons to what is most familiar. Learning about another culture sheds light on aspects of our own culture—both positive and negative—we may not have previously considered. You may find a greater appreciation for what you have, or you may decide to shake things up!