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10 reasons why everyone should learn a foreign language
Wednesday April 17, 2019

Since the beginning of documented history, language has been the most powerful medium for shaping world politics and culture. In the ancient times, foreign scholars used to visit India for the enriching exchange of language and knowledge. They stayed for months and learnt ‘Pali’, ‘Sanskrit’ etc. Even today, when geographical borders are melting away with clicks, taps and swipes, learning new language is emerging as the ultimate game changer economically, socially and psychologically. Let’s explore how?

1.Connect better, connect wider
We grow up with the assumption that English is the most commonly spoken international language globally. But quite on the contrary there are several big economies where English is an alien tongue e.g. Japan, China, Spain. So, to acquire a greater global mileage, you need to top up your English-speaking skills with popular languages like Mandarin, French, Spanish etc. Btw do you know that Mandarin is the most spoken language in the world and not English?

2. Explore newer markets
Language is not just a communication medium, it carries emotional ramifications. So, if you are entrepreneur looking to expand in foreign territories, learning the tongue of the land unleashes a world of exciting possibilities. You are quickly absorbed by the consumer pool, better understood and trusted. In no time the common language makes you ‘one of them’- which is hugely beneficial as far as business is concerned.

3. Shoot up higher in your career graph
Adding a language or two in your resume immediately sets it apart from the rest! While it opens newer avenues like that of an interpreter or translator, it also creates an instant positive impression. Specially for candidates in marketing and communication, knowing a foreign language is deemed as lucrative.

4. Unhindered Creativity
Dust off that creative vein with a brand-new language. It has been scientifically proven that trying to learn a new language activates certain areas of the brain that is directly linked with creativity and innovation. What can be a better motivation!

5. Think through a new world view
Every culture perceives and experiences the world differently, language being the expression of this diversity. Experts believe if you actually speak more than one language, the horizons of your mind widen. You acquire a new perspective and a fresh world view. So, plunge into this life changing experience and meet with a different you!

6. Stay young longer
Learning a foreign language is the best work out for the brain. In fact, the more active it remains, the slower you age and the sharper you think.

7. Step out interesting
Learning a new language is the coolest way to boost self-confidence. Excellent as a conversation starter, it helps you do away with your shy, hesitant self and emerge as interesting. So, go ahead learn a few French phases and Spanish expressions to steal the spotlight of the next party in town.

8. Get closer to your mother tongue
Linguists believe that indulging in a whole new way of speaking lends a comparative lens to the speaker. You tend to analyse the foreign accent, intonations, pauses, tempo which in turn helps you appreciate the nuances of your own language better. This is a especially useful for writers and public speakers who would like to hone their native language skills while reaching out to a global audience with a new language.

9. Become a social ambassador
Like most millennials, if you subscribe to the ethos of a global tribe- celebration of humanity through appreciation of diversity- knowing a foreign language instantly gives you an extra edge. You become the communicator, the bridge between different cultures and before you realise you are already making the world a better place.

10. Love above all
The only factor that keeps us from embracing diversity is the fear of the unknown. We grow suspicious of people who dress differently, speak differently and express differently. To grow out of this irrational fear and the bitter prejudice that comes with it, you must learn how they speak.

Learning their language will help you transcend barriers of race, religion, ethnicity and make you conscious of universal brotherhood that unites us as one.

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