Today I’m going to light a fire of enthusiasm for something totally radical: BILINGUISM! BOOM! Being bilingual is totally posh right now, and I’m going to do my best to enlighten you in the same way I was.
For starters, speaking another language is a sign of INTELLIGENCE! It not only shows that you are absolutely brilliant, (you’re a member of Planet Beach, or someone who would like to be… of course you are brilliant!) but it shows that you had the mental discipline to learn on your own accord! Go, you! Plus, think of all the incredible cultural nuances and references you’d catch on to, making you and even more interesting person with whom to engage in conversations! (Let’s be real, I’ve always wished my French was good enough to understand that Lady Marmalade song… Voulez-vous coucher avec moi?!)
What about building connections!? Establishing relationships with other people is key in being a happy human being, but what about your family? If you’re one of those lucky people with a defined cultural heritage, how great would it be to be able to relate on a deeper, more salient level? I’m personally a cultural melting pot, but learning to speak German with my boyfriend’s German-born parents allowed us to connect in a level that was mutually beneficial and progressive for all participating parties.
What about personal growth? Strengthening your brain’s ability to stimulate thought in unfamiliar patterns increases better handling on multi-tasking, ability to make decisions quickly and effectively, improved memory, as well as an overall keener mind. External discovery and actualization is inevitable, but think of the perks of your own personal mental and social expansion! Not to mention the wonders it’ll do for your resume!
What about a trip to that foreign country you’ve always wanted to take? HOW COOL would it be to have a firmed understanding of the native language? Not only will locals be impressed and more excited/comfortable to engage in conversation, but you may notice your confidence and willingness to assimilate to an otherwise dauntingly unfamiliar culture increase at least a little bit.
“But Cybill! I’m not self-disciplined enough to take on this endeavor without external resources!” Yes, you are! But the fine folks at Rosetta Stone has made their programs more varied and affordable than ever!
“But Cybill! I am not in the financial spot to pay for a learning resource! I also don’t have enough time in a day to devote to learning a language!” The only thing you don’t have is the right attitude. Meet Livemocha and Duolingo, both are free, at-your-own-pace resources that offer tons of languages. Both also allow you to track your progress on social media, which tends to evoke a competitive edge to make achieving results even more desirable.