Why learn a second language?

In our world today, there are about 3.3 billion bilingual people out of the 7.753 billion population of the world. Almost half of the population on earth speak two languages, why don’t you become one of them?

It might seem obvious for some people that choosing a second language to learn goes without saying. But for others, this type of effort needs a justification.

Most people learn a second language simply because they go to school and they have to take a language class. They may get personally invested in that language if it’s their heritage language or the language of a country they’re planning to visit or live in.

However, others decide to learn a second language even though they don’t have to study it in school or it’s not needed for their work or their career.

Every one of these language learners will have their own reasons why they are interested in this or that language, but I would like to give you, what I hope to be, good reasons for you to consider learning a second language, that is if you’re still on the fence about it.

Effective communication 🤙

Languages are means of communication and each language is specific to its environment and culture. Languages also change, they evolve, thrive or they may die. So, basically the two main purposes of any language is to communicate and to vehicle the culture. As a monolingual, you might be able to communicate with people who don’t speak your language through translation but, know this, although translation can be a great way to communicate ideas, many things get lost in translation like nuances in perceptions, idioms, street talk, jokes and humor, cultural references and much more. So, if you want to communicate with people who don’t speak your language consider learning theirs.

Keeping your brain young 🌱

Learning a language can help keep your brain young. when you learn a second language, you use many skills at the same time and you sharpen them because you have to understand the logical connection between the different parts of speech in that language. You also have to activate your memory and remember many new words. You need to be creative because after learning the new words and understanding the building blocks of the structures of that language, you would have to produce a text either in writing or in speaking that would make sense to native speakers. Your brain uses a lot of skills at the same time and one of those processes that happen inside your brain is the decoding of the language. That means that your brain learns a new code. It needs to learn how to decode it in a matter of seconds to be able to use that code effectively in the process of communication.

All these intellectual and cognitive activities help keep your brain healthy and young.

Traveling is more fun ✈️

Another great motivation to learn a new language is traveling. You can certainly use English or any other language that might be understood in the host country. However, if you really want to have an authentic local experience, learning the language of that country would be the way. Remember many things are lost in translation. So based on how much you’re willing to enjoy your stay in a foreign country, you may want to learn the language of that country.

Watch the first five minutes of this video. The polyglot, Marc Green, talks about a trip he made to Russia and how knowing the language of the country you’re visiting can make all the difference.

It is powerful 🔥

There is a reason that may be overlooked at many times, that is learning a language is fun. it is one of the most coveted hobbies around the world. Many people enjoy doing it, they enjoy exploring new sounds and new ways of talking and writing. They enjoy being bilingual, multilingual or polyglot. It is a power in itself, an intellectual power and an interpersonal power.

Boosting your career 💼

Knowing more than one language can boost your career. Even if you’re not planning on working in a multi lingual company or in a domain that requires speaking different languages like teaching, translation or tourism, learning a second language can open up opportunities within your career that you may not have been aware of. I know people who changed their careers because they knew more than one language and they found opportunities to work in a different career using their linguistic skills.

It is free 🆓

Back in the day, when people wanted to learn a new language they had to go and buy expensive kits that included textbooks CDs and workbooks. They still do today, but, luckily, it is optional. You can learn a second language from scratch, from beginners to advanced level for free. You would just have to be creative in knowing what you need to do, the resources you need to have access to, and coming up with a plan that meets your needs.

Thanks to the Internet many valuable resources are available online for free. Reading and listening materials are available through websites and videos, grammar rules are also available for free even some courses may be available for free. All you need to do is to do a good research, gather up your material and learn as you go.

And for that matter, let me direct you to two of my projects, they’re still young but I’m sure they’ll grow bigger overtime, Learn Arabic and Learn French. At the moment, I am posting videos to teach these two languages. You can watch Learn Arabic videos for free here:


And Learn French videos here:


I also created an Arabic course. You can see all the lessons that have been posted here:

And if you are a French learner, you can watch my French course for beginners here:

I have also some quizzes available for French learners. so check them out here if you’re interested:

Reap the benefits 😎

Many things can be said about the reasons why one needs to learn a second language, but I find this reason to be the most important on the long run. We, as humans, tend to formulate our vision of the world through our experiences, the intellectual input that we are exposed to during our life which includes the things we learn in school, the books we read, the works of art that we consume and our environment in general. Learning a second language can help us develop our vision of the world in ways that would not have been possible without knowing that second language. This effect would be immense if you decide to learn a language that has a large impact on the world, that would simply mean a language that is spoken by a large population of the world like Chinese (1.31 billion, 1st spoken language in the world), Arabic (313 million, 5th spoken language in the world), French (300 million, 4th spoken language in the world), and Spanish (500 million, 3rd spoken language in the world).


Numbers may vary. I am showing them here just for demonstration purposes.

Enjoy the art ㊗️

All the other 7000 languages in the world that are not as widely spoken still attract many language learners thanks to its culture. Japanese is spoken by about 125 million people, most of whom live in Japan. Many Japanese learners say they learn it because they’re interested in the anime or the manga which are two arts specific to Japan. In order for them to enjoy them fully, they would like to bypass the medium of translation or voice over and consume these arts in their authentic way of expression which increases the level of entertainment.

It’s not rare either to see people interested in learning Portuguese because of their love for the music. Many Portuguese learners start by being fans of  Música popular brasileira, MPB, for example, before turning to learn the language. This is an important starting point for many language learners. They become interested in a language because they are interested in an art that is being made in that language.

In a nutshell 🥜

So basically, you would want to learn a second language because it is fun, will stimulate the good faculties in your brain, will give you a broader perspective of the world we live in, will bring you closer to different cultures, will enhance your traveling experience and your experience enjoying different creative arts and finally it can have a positive impact on your career path.

What do you think of that? which of these reasons sounds the most plausible for you? do you have more reasons to add to that list? I would love to hear from you.

You can listen to the article here on the podcast.

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