How a second language can boost the brain

The brain areas responsible for that are also used when you’re trying to complete a task while there are distractions. The task could have nothing to do with language; it could be trying to listen to something in a noisy environment or doing some visual task. The muscle memory developed from using two languages also can apply to different skills.

 The brain is made up of cells called neurons, which each have a cell body and little branching connections called dendrites. Gray matter refers to how many cell bodies and dendrites there are. Bilingual experience makes gray matter denser, so you have more cells. This is an indication of a healthier brain.

Improve your decision-making skills

unique study at the University of Chicago found that business people make better decisions when weighing problems in a non-native tongue. UChicago psychologist Boaz Keysar argues that foreign languages force you to contemplate decisions instead of relying on intuition, which is riddled with biases. 

Increased Creativity

New languages cause you to picture landscapes of possibilities. Choosing the proper term for a feeling or thought is itself an act of creation. During the first few years of life we do this at a rapid pace. As you age, you become more deliberate in your word choice. New languages free you from the conventions of habit. Expressing yourself in a new language is a creative act, and that mindset translates into other realms of life.

Bottom Line

It helps with ignoring distractions to stay focused, switching attention willfully from one thing to another and holding information in mind. Learning another language is one of the most effective and practical ways to increase intelligence, keep your mind sharp, and buffer your brain against aging.

Increased Focus

We live in an attention economy and many people suffer from a deficit. When you hear a word or phrase being spoken, your brain actually guesses at the completed statement. We’re constantly guessing reality all the time. Interestingly, bilingual speakers don’t turn off one language when listening to another. They’re anticipating words from multiple languages all the time

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