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Benefits of Being Bilingual (Malaysians Take Pride!)

by ikalmayang

We all know that when living in Malaysia, we have a lot to be proud of. We’re famous for having one of the most diverse populations, and for having the most irresistible food. 

But there’s one advantage most Malaysians have that’s not talked about enough: we are bilingual! 

As a product of a multiracial and hence multilingual country, some if not most of us are bound to have picked up one or two extra languages in addition to our mother tongue – especially thanks to our public school education system implementing English as a second language in our curriculum. 

Why is this a flex? Because learning or speaking a second language actually has scientifically-proven benefits. Here are some of them: 

  1. It improves memory.

The brain is also a muscle. Just like how you exercise to build stamina for your body, your brain also gets its workout from learning a new language. People who learn or speak different languages are more averse to memory decline and can retain information for longer periods of time. 

  1. It boosts human connection. 

Humans crave to connect. There are very few things that are universally capable of bringing people together: music, food and the literal language we speak. Being able to interact with people from different cultures and places can help bridge the gap between people and help us widen our own worldview. We can gain better perspectives on how the world is lived. 

  1. Increase in Career Options

While not a scientific fact, having fluency in a different language on your resume is a huge advantage, especially if you have the credentials to support it. Language and communication-centric careers like translation, customer service, interpretation are considerably more high-paying and can have good return-on-investment in the working world. 

So, as Malaysians, we should be proud of our abilities to speak in different languages! It comes with being in such a diverse place. How many languages can you speak?

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