The benefits of being bilingual
There are over 6,500 different languages spoken around the world and many of us can only speak one of them. Many of us were brought up in multilingual families or schools and some of us decided to learn a second language ourselves. Languages are the best ways to communicate with others, but there are many more benefits to being bilingual than just talking to different people.
From learning two languages and comparing the differences, there are benefits on the brain, helping it to work faster and notice patterns. As biligusts need to pay more attention to which language is being spoken around them and keep track of the certain sounds it really helps their personal skills. It has been proven that Bilinguists can have better problem solving, listening and attention skills.
Speaking two languages enables people to step into two different cultures with confidence and without feeling excluded, whereas monolinguists are less likely to do this. Not to mention the obvious reasons of being able to make more friends and communicate easier with others in both personal and professional environments. Many biliguists are known to be more open-minded due to being a close part of two different cultures and interacting with a wider variety of people.
The largest study on bilingualism is that there is long delay for getting symptoms of dementia for people speaking at least two languages. On average, bilingual patients suffer dementia 4.5 years later than someone speaking only one language. This is because the brain is doing extra cognitive work and processing new words on a regular basis, helping to push back memory loss.
International companies much prefer people who can speak more than one language and even national companies will like to have someone who can speak another language as it shows determination and will always come in useful. There is also a 2.8 % higher pay rate for those bilinguists and many more job opportunities. There are of course more options for living and working abroad with your second language.
Can you speak two or more languages? What benefits have you encountered?