10 Reasons Why Learning Arabic Should Be Your New Year's Resolution
BY: Nadine Ismail/Ambassador Blogger
Happy New Year! Everyone is busy jotting down his or her New Year’s resolutions and finding ways to commit to the goals. Most resolutions include getting healthy, finding a better job, or traveling. However, have you thought about learning Arabic as your 2017 New Year’s resolution?
Here are 10 reasons why learning Arabic should be on your New Year’s resolution:
1. You strengthen your family ties
When you learn the Arabic language, you can finally start to understand what your relatives are talking about at family gatherings. Have you ever felt like you are an outsider in your own family? When your mother and father speak Arabic, do you have a suspicious feeling that they are talking about you? Now is your chance to be part of the conversation.
2. You strengthen your brain
Research shows that when you learn a new language, you use a certain part of the brain that helps it become more elastic and adaptable. The more you use those areas, the stronger your brain becomes. Research also shows that learning new languages delays dementia, slows aging, and aids in stroke recovery.
3. You revive your memory
Learning a new language has a direct impact on your memory. In fact, it boosts your mental problem solving skills and reading. The more languages you learn, the easier the learning process will become. Your brain finds ways to assimilate all these languages and creates relationship among them.
4. You become the multi-tasker that you always wanted to be
Bilingual people are constantly multitasking when speaking with others. They are always figuring out which language to use and which word is needed at that moment. There is also plenty of multi-tasking in learning a new language.
5. You widen your career options
Arabic is used in many countries and is not specific to one country, such as Italian or Turkish. When you learn the Arabic language, you are opening new career opportunities in a wider geographical area. However, please note that every region in the Arab world has its own spoken dialect, which can be confusing at times, but adaptable.
6. You open up to a new culture
When you learn a language, you open the door of that culture. You will be able to relate to the people living there and have access to their social practices, food, and arts. Proverbs are a great gateway to learn Arabic and get insight into the Arab culture and history.
7. You can explore new countries
When you learn a language, you feel more confident in your travels. You are more motivated to practice the learned vocabulary in context. Asking for coffee in Arabic is less of a daunting task when you actually speak the language.
8. You can read and watch the news in Arabic
In the era of fake news, one must be vigilant about the source of information. The Middle East has always been the stage of political turmoil, and Western reporting of Arab events is often lacking the complete story. When you learn the Arabic language, you have access to wider source of information that includes news from the Arab world instead of news about the Arab world.
9. You can make life long friends
Arab friends are very loyal and warm and treat friends as family. They are known for their hospitality and generosity, and will literally would take the shirts off their back to offer to you. When you learn the language and use Arabic jargon in conversations, you strengthen your relationship with them, and make friends for life.
10. You can find love
I met my husband when he was learning Arabic. He was in between jobs and decided to travel for few months to the Middle East to immerse himself into the language and improve his skills. We met at a mutual friend’s party. The more places and cultures you explore, the higher your chances are of meeting someone that shares your interests and passions.
Nadine Ismail of Reinventing Nadine is a blogger living in the Bay Area in California. Nadine shares on her blog and Instagram account her recipes, crafts and embroidery tutorials, and parental advice, especially raising a bilingual child.