How Learning a Foreign Language Can Boost Happiness

learning foreign language boost happinessDiscover how learning a foreign language can boost your happiness and well-being. From cognitive benefits to social advantages, this article explores the benefits of language learning. Get practical tips and advice to make the most of your language learning experience and start your journey towards language proficiency today.

Learning a foreign language can be a rewarding experience that goes far beyond the ability to communicate with people from different countries.

In today’s globalized world, being multilingual is becoming increasingly valuable, whether for professional, social, or personal reasons. In addition, learning a foreign language means acquiring a new set of skills and knowledge, as well as expanding one’s cultural horizons. 

But did you know that learning a foreign language can also boost your happiness and well-being? Yep, it’s true.

I’m writing this article because I’m a bestselling happpiness book author with 2 million books sold.

Plus I founded a research based online course on relaxation called The Anxiety Cure.

I love sharing insights and strategies to help people to be happier.

With this in mind I put together this quick guide about language learning and happiness.

The connection between language learning and happiness

It may sound surprising, but research has shown that learning a foreign language can lead to a higher level of happiness and well-being.

For example, one study conducted by the European Commission found that language learners reported a more heightened sense of personal fulfillment, greater life satisfaction, and lower stress levels than non-language learners.

Of course, learning a new language can be challenging and requires effort, but a sense of accomplishment and progress can contribute to a more positive outlook on life.

Moreover, the process of learning a foreign language can have a direct impact on the brain.

  • According to a study by the University of Edinburgh, bilingual or multilingual people tend to have more gray matter in their brain’s language centers, which can improve cognitive abilities such as memory, attention, and problem-solving. This means that learning a new language opens up new opportunities for communication, stimulates the brain, and helps keep it healthy.

Personal anecdotes also support how language learning boosts happiness.

Many language learners feel a sense of connection and belonging when communicating with people from different countries and cultures.

For example, a person who learns Spanish may feel a sense of pride and accomplishment when they can travel to a Spanish-speaking country and have conversations with locals. This sense of achievement and cultural exchange can contribute to a more fulfilling and enriching life.

The cognitive benefits of learning a foreign language

Learning a foreign language is a mental workout that can improve cognitive function in several ways.

  • First, it can enhance the brain’s executive function, which is responsible for planning, decision-making, and problem-solving tasks. For example, a study by the University of Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona found that language learners performed better in tasks requiring executive function than monolingual individuals.
  • Second, learning a foreign language can improve memory retention and recall. When learning a new language, we must memorize vocabulary, grammar rules, and sentence structures. This memorization process exercises the brain’s memory functions, which can improve our ability to remember things in other areas of life.
  • Third, learning a foreign language can increase mental flexibility and creativity. When we learn a new language, we are exposed to new ways of thinking and expressing ourselves. This exposure can help us develop a more flexible and adaptable mindset, which can translate to other areas of life, such as problem-solving and creativity.

The social benefits of learning a foreign language

Learning a foreign language can also improve social skills and cultural awareness. When we learn a new language, we open ourselves up to new ways of communication, which can help us connect with people from different cultures and backgrounds. In addition, language learners are often more sensitive to cultural differences and more open-minded toward other cultures.

Research has shown that learning a foreign language can positively impact social well-being.

  • For example, a study by the University of Cambridge found that language learners had higher levels of empathy and more positive attitudes toward people from other cultures.
  • Another study by the University of Illinois found that language learners were more likely to engage in cultural activities and had a greater sense of cultural identity.

Personal anecdotes also support how language learning can improve social skills and cultural awareness.

For example, a person who learns Chinese may be able to communicate more effectively with Chinese-speaking colleagues or clients, leading to better business relationships. Similarly, a person who learns Arabic may gain a better understanding and appreciation for the culture and history of the Middle East.

Language learning tools and resources

One of the most effective ways to learn a new language is through language-learning apps and tools. For example, Promova is a language learning application that can help learners of all levels improve their language skills, including in Spanish, French, German, Chinese, and Japanese. And another famous app is Duolingo. Each app uses artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms to adapt to learners’ unique needs and preferences.

Many users report how using an app helped them enjoy significant progress in their language skills after using it for just a few weeks or months. In addition, the app’s interactive features, such as chatbots and voice recognition technology, make learning a new language more engaging and fun.

Tips for successful language learning

While language-learning apps can be helpful, several strategies can help learners maximize their language-learning experience.

Some practical tips for successful language learning include setting achievable goals, practicing regularly, seeking out opportunities for immersion, and connecting with other language learners.

Staying motivated and overcoming obstacles can also be a challenge for language learners. Some strategies for staying motivated include finding a language-learning partner or community, incorporating language learning into daily routines, and focusing on the joy and personal fulfillment of learning a new language.

For example…

  • A language learner who aims to converse with a native speaker within three months may find that the goal gives them a sense of purpose and direction.
  • Similarly, a language learner who joins a language exchange group may find that the support and camaraderie of other learners help them stay motivated.


Learning a foreign language can benefit our happiness, well-being, and personal growth. The rewards of language learning are many, from improving cognitive function to fostering cultural exchange and social skills.

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