Most of us remember the experience well: It was middle or high school, and time to pick classes. However, there was a brand new requirement for the first time: You had to learn a foreign language. Some of us responded with joy and excitement—others with dread and annoyance. Either way, learning a foreign language represented a new challenge we had never previously explored.
At the time, we may not have realized this fundamental truth: Learning a foreign language is incredibly important. It can help teach you an invaluable skill, exercise your brain, make you more marketable when looking for a job, and so much more. The skills developed when learning a foreign language — and while journaling in that language — can prove to be critical.
The career benefits of learning a foreign language are massive. Indeed, pursuing a foreign language for this reason alone may be worth it. Consider the following:
Learning a foreign language can boost your pay, potentially by as much as 20%. .
A foreign language can open up whole new career pathways for you, potentially giving you the chance to work in fields you would not otherwise.
In many instances — like if you are working in an area where there are a high number of speakers of a second language that you know — understanding a foreign language can give you a leg up on other job applicants and give you an increased chance of earning a job.
Keeps Your Mind Sharp
Learning a foreign language is good for your brain. Multiple studies have confirmed that learning a foreign language can exercise brain parts that may otherwise atrophy. As such, it can strengthen the connection between neurons in your brain. It can also force you to think of new ways to think about words, adjectives, and language structure. In this regard, it can expand how you speak in your native language, ultimately making you a better speaker and writer. This brain function helps explain why practicing a foreign language in multiple mediums — such as journaling — is so important.
Furthermore, learning a foreign language can improve your memory. These improvement flows naturally from learning a foreign language, as you will need to expand both your short-term and long-term memory to get your brain to memorize the words and syntax you will need to learn a foreign language. In improving your memory, your brain becomes far more flexible and can learn other new things.
Opens You Up To New Cultures
Learning a foreign language is rarely just about just the language itself. When learning a language, you often expose yourself to a host of new cultural and travel opportunities. After all, many foreign language courses will provide individuals with in-depth immersion in different cultures. It can allow you to learn more about areas of the world with which you may not have previously been familiar, thus expanding your mind to new experiences and ways of life. Furthermore, you can immerse yourself in a new culture by traveling to it, allowing you to learn the language and better understand how it is used in a conversational, casual, and non-academic context.
More Than Speaking
All too often, people think of learning a foreign language as speaking. But, remember, a foreign language is about so much more than speaking: It is also about music, writing, entertainment, and more.
The benefits of a foreign language are only increased if you put active effort into that language. This helps to explain why journaling in a foreign language is so beneficial. Journaling makes you think of words and develop a better understanding of the sentence structure of a foreign language. In this capacity, journaling can serve as excellent practice for whatever foreign language you are trying to learn.
As you can see, the benefits of learning a foreign language, and practicing that foreign language regularly, are enormous. Thankfully, there are many ways you can practice any time, any place, and in any medium of your choosing. For example, a micro-journaling program like ByteLife can allow you to practice writing down your thoughts in the foreign language you are learning. As a result, you can practice from your phone whenever you have a free moment.