There may be more to language learning than you first realised…
2018 brings the opportunity to make new resolutions and set personal goals and for many of us, finding romance is high on the list. However, if you have been trying to hit the gym in an effort to improve your appearance, get ready for some good news – making yourself attractive might be easier than you think. A new global study by language learning app Babbel and dating site EliteSingles, has found that 93% of Americans surveyed, would prefer to date a partner who has foreign language skills, than one who has a six pack.
With 61% of Americans willing to learn a language in order to improve their love lives, let’s see just why language skills can make you more attractive than muscles, when it comes to finding love:
A reason given by 23% of those who were surveyed, as to why they would prefer a partner with language skills rather than a six-pack, is intelligence. Put simply, learning a language is sexy because it indicates to a potential partner that you are smart. The great thing about this is that they aren’t wrong; speaking a foreign language can actually improve your intelligence! Not only does it improve the functionality of your brain, but research from Northwestern University found that learning a new language can make you better at tuning out distractions, while research from Lund University, suggests that learning a language can actually lead to brain growth, as well as helping keep it in great condition.
Makes you better at decision-making
Speaking more than one language may also make you far more adept at decision-making, a quality valued by many when it comes to relationships. Couples often complain about their partner’s lack of decision-making skills and their indecisiveness over every day issues. According to a study by the University of Chicago, bilinguals tend be better decision makers than the rest of us. Not only is this a great skill to have for yourself, but it can be a positive one when it comes to dating, because you will be more likely to appear self-assured and confident in your own skin, much more impressive than possessing muscles!
Makes you a great communicator
As Julie Hansen, CEO US of Babbel says, “being able to communicate is fundamental to human interaction”. Speaking a second language not only opens up the opportunity for you to communicate with people you may not otherwise have been able to talk to, it can also make you a better communicator in your mother tongue. Learning the grammar and mechanics behind a second language can make you more aware of your first language and more skilled when it comes to using it. Your use of your first language can become more advanced and you might become more aware of the nuances of the language that you may not otherwise have noticed. This will likely provide you with the skills to be a better communicator, as you are equipped with a good understanding and use of vocabulary, which can be used to better express emotions and thoughts to your partner. This can be very important when it comes to dating, as Sophie Watson, spokesperson for EliteSingles, points out; “connection and great communication are vital parts of a first date – especially if you want to land a second one”.
It sets you apart from others
While many people possess muscles, the majority of the population in the US only speaks one language; English. This means that if you take the decision to learn a second language this year, you will be setting yourself apart from a large majority of your competition when it comes to finding love. It also provides you with the opportunity to land many jobs which are not accessible to others, such as a flight attendant, journalist, an English teacher abroad and many more. Not only could these jobs make you seem seriously impressive, but who knows who you might meet as a result of these opportunities.
Makes you more interesting
In an age where the majority of us have serious aspirations to travel and learn about other cultures, speaking more than one language makes you far more interesting than someone who has a six-pack. Whether you have lived in another country, or simply learnt another language out of curiosity, it adds a new layer to your personality, which is bound to be of interest to a potential partner. Of the 93% who said they would prefer to date a partner who has language skills rather than a six pack, 42% said this was because they find other cultures interesting, meaning that your language skills will likely provide you with a great topic of conversation, whether that is talking about the country you have lived in or visited, or the reasons why you decided to learn a certain language.
Christian Hillemeyer is director of communications at Babbel.