Communicating is one of the most essential yet most complicated things to do. Often, misunderstandings arise from differences in language and a lack of communication skills. When you travel or do business, the ability to communicate effectively will benefit you well.
If you want to have strong communication skills, you should invest in your personal development. One of the most effective ways to improve your overall communication skills is by learning a new language.
Why Learning Languages Improves Your Overall Communication Skills
Excellent communication skills are crucial to understand other people and allow other people to understand you better. Communication is multi-faceted; it cannot be a one-way street.
Learning new languages not only enables you to develop your interpersonal skills, but it also helps you understand your strengths and weaknesses when communicating with others.
Do you want to boost your communication skills? Learning a new language teaches you the following skills:
1. Improve Your Memory
Learning a second language can boost your memory by challenging your brain to memorize foreign words and phrases. Language learning is an excellent mental exercise that sharpens your mind.
One of the most challenging languages to learn is Latin due to its complex grammar and verb structures. However, when you learn Latin, you’ll realize that there are advantages to studying the language. For one, you can easily understand and learn other foreign languages, like Italian, Spanish, French, and Portuguese.
Here’s how an improved memory helps your overall communication skills:
- You develop a technique on how to associate images and words
- You absorb words, phrases, and ideas easily
- You can communicate and socialize better when you have a good memory for names, places, and things
2. Active Listening
When you want to learn a new language, you start by listening first. Listening is merely hearing sounds, but active listening requires paying close attention to what’s being said. Active listening is one of the vital communication skills that you’ll learn when acquiring a new language.
While actively listening may seem like a simple task, it’s very challenging to improve or develop.
Here’s how active listening helps your overall communication skills:
- You learn to avoid distractions so that you can focus on what’s being said
- You can respond thoughtfully and appropriately to questions and comments
- You understand ideas better so that you can use or apply them appropriately
3. Understand Nonverbal Language
Every language has different verbal and nonverbal characteristics. Verbal communication consists of words and sounds, both written and spoken. Nonverbal communication, on the other hand, involves facial expressions, gestures, body language, and silence. Different cultures communicate in unique ways – what you’re accustomed to may not apply when speaking to someone in another language.
For example, the OK sign may be accepted in most English-speaking countries but is considered rude in Brazil. In Arab culture, it’s considered very rude to peek at your watch while having a conversation. Thus, studying a new language is not just about learning to speak verbally. You also become aware of the traits of different countries or ethnicities.
Learn about my experience I had on a student exchange in Spain thanks to knowing languages.
4. Boosts Your Confidence
To become a better communicator, you need to be confident in your skills. Acquiring a new language is an achievement that you can be proud of and gives your confidence an extra boost.
After all, you spent a significant number of hours to study and learn new vocabulary – and it’s not a simple task. You can pat yourself on the back after learning a new language, your patience and determination have paid off!
Many people have trouble speaking in front of a crowd or presenting their ideas to a group. One of the benefits of learning a foreign language is that you gradually develop confidence in speaking to someone in their native language.
You become more accustomed to new challenges so you can tackle a nerve-wracking task like public speaking.
Learn languages more efficiently by setting the right goals.
5. Enhanced Focus and Flexibility
Discovering a language is more beneficial than one would realize. People who invest in learning a foreign language develops adaptability and concentration.
In a world where multi-tasking is required, bilingual and multilingual individuals may be able to cope better with demanding situations and changing environments.
Studying languages not only gives you a sharper mind but also makes you more creative to adapt to different situations. An effective communicator is regarded as approachable and trustworthy because they’re calm, organized, and responsive.
6. Better Comprehension
One of the benefits of studying languages is developing better comprehension. When you learn a foreign language, you’re introducing new information to your brain, which makes you a better reader, listener, and speaker.
Your comprehension skills show your ability to process and analyze data. Effective communication is not just about exchanging information – it requires critical thinking.
Here’s how better comprehension improves one’s overall communication skills:
- You can mentally process written and spoken text fast
- You can understand the context of information accurately
- You can make better decisions based on the information presented
7. Speak with Fluency
Getting your point across effectively, whether to an individual or a group of people, is very empowering. Learning a non-native language helps develop your verbal skills, which are crucial in becoming an effective communicator.
During the process of studying a foreign language, you gain a better perspective of your native language. Why? Because you’ll be switching back and forth from your language to the new language that you want to learn.
By assessing your understanding of your native language, you learn to speak with fluency. Being articulate is crucial, whether you’re employed or still attending school. Your verbal prowess significantly improves by discovering a new language – you can think on your feet and get your point across with ease.
To become an excellent communicator, you should look at different ways to improve your verbal and non-verbal skills. When you learn a new language, you enrich your current communication skills to become more conscious and tolerant of other cultures. Studying a new language is not limited to linguistics, but also broadening your mind to accept cultural diversity.