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7 Benefits of Speaking Multiple Languages: Number 5 Will Surprise You

Benefits of Speaking Multiple Languages

Have you ever thought of studying a foreign language? Did you know that over 43% of the global population can converse in two or more languages and more than 20% of American residents are bilingual?

Well, there’s more than that that makes learning a foreign language attractive and beneficial. Not only does it open up a world of opportunities, but it also offers incredible advantages.

Read the rest of this article and get the motivation you need by discovering seven of the biggest benefits of speaking multiple languages.

7 Benefits of Being Multilingual

You don’t have to be a genius or a linguist to reap the rewards of speaking multiple languages. Normal people can easily learn a foreign language and enjoy the following benefits:

1. You Become Smarter

First on our list is perhaps the most obvious benefit of speaking multiple languages – intelligence. According to researchers, bilinguals are smarter than someone who only speaks one language and have better numeracy and literacy skills, problem-solving abilities, a stronger attention span, and improved memory.

Learning a second language enhances important cognitive processes, like concentration and problem-solving, which can be beneficial in a variety of settings.

2. You Can Improve Communication Skills

Remember the saying “Put yourself in the other person’s shoes”? Well, multilinguals can do just that! Being able to speak a foreign language allows them to better communicate and understand people from different cultural backgrounds, a skill that can come in handy when dealing with people of various nationalities.

This way, you are able to connect with a larger number of people and build strong relationships with them. This is especially important when you are living abroad or traveling.

3. Reduces Your Risk of Having Dementia

According to Columbia University researchers, 10% of U.S. adults ages 65 and older are bilingual and, as a result, have a lower risk of developing dementia when compared to monolinguals. This is because learning another language helps keep the mind sharp and can delay age-related decline in cognitive functions.

The good thing is that you don’t have to be fluent in both languages for this advantage. Even speaking two languages at a basic level can reduce your risk of dementia by up to 50%.

4. Opens up Cultural and Social Opportunities

Careers, business relationships, and friendships are all improved with multilingualism. It provides access to different cultures and social groups that you would otherwise have a hard time connecting with.

The ability to speak more than one language also allows you to experience a different way of life and further develop your cultural understanding. This is especially beneficial if you are living abroad or studying at a foreign university.

5. Bilingual People Appear To Be More Attractive 

As promised, #5 will surprise you. Yes, believe it or not, bilingual people appear to be more attractive than those who only speak one language. According to an article posted by Reader’s Digest, 75% of interviewed individuals say that they find someone speaking multiple languages attractive. This boosts your chances of finding love and making a lasting impression.

6. Bilingual People Are More Empathetic

As you improve your communication and the more you learn about other cultures, the more you become aware of what others feel. Language and culture are closely connected and the more you know about a culture, the better you can understand its people.

This empathy towards others is beneficial in many ways, from giving you the ability to communicate better with different people to help you develop stronger relationships.

7. Get Paid More

Last on our list is the financial advantage of speaking multiple languages. It’s a known fact that bilinguals have higher earning potential than those who only speak one language. Many job opportunities require foreign language skills and employers are willing to pay extra for multilingual staff.

You can appear to be more desirable in the job market which will increase your chance of landing a higher-paying job. Additionally, you may even get to travel more as some companies require their employees to visit their foreign branches to better understand the market and culture.

Disadvantages To Speaking Multiple Languages

Multilingual Disadvantages

Now you might be asking, “Are there any disadvantages to speaking multiple languages?” The answer is yes. While most of the benefits outweigh the drawbacks, here are some potential downsides:

  1. Some people experience difficulty transitioning from one language to another, especially when speaking in a second language. This is called interference and it can have an effect on pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary. Additionally, bilingualism might also result in a delay in language acquisition for young children.
  2. Also, some bilinguals tend to mix languages when speaking, which can lead to confusion and misunderstandings. This might also make it challenging for them to express themselves in either language.
  3. Finally, there can be a trade-off between the two languages, so bilinguals might have less vocabulary in both languages than monolinguals.

Despite these potential drawbacks, the benefits of speaking multiple languages far outweigh any negatives. Even if you think you are too old to learn a new language, it’s never too late!

How Many Languages Can a Person Learn?

Being bi- or multilingual is becoming more and more common. In fact, about 43% of the world’s population speaks two languages! On average, a normal person can learn as much as four languages. However, this number can vary from person to person depending on their language learning abilities and dedication. Only three percent of the world’s population is fluent in five languages or more.

The Bottom Line

Though speaking multiple languages can be challenging, the rewards you reap are worth it. Learning a new language gives you access to different cultures, better communication with others, improved cognitive functions, and even higher wages. With that in mind, why not give it a shot? Whether you choose to take language classes or learn through immersion, it’s never too late to learn a new language. Who knows, you might become the next polyglot!

In need of a translation service for your company or documents? Feel free to contact us here at AFLS – A Foreign Language Service. We offer different translation services in over 400 different languages. Contact us today for more information!

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