Each week, I offer you a new video on a specific topic to help you better understand authentic French. If you want to practice speaking this topic and finally gain confidence in French, join my French conversation group Ohlala French Coffee.
This week at Ohlala French Coffee we're going to talk about mental health. I thought it would be interesting to share with you how learning French is good for your mental health, even if the grammar drives you crazy!
We hear about all the beneficial aspects of learning French to travel, to work, to meet new people. But, we don't necessarily talk about the mental health benefits of learning French. Today I'm going to explain to you why learning French is good for your mental health. Let's get started!
Reason number 1: Learning French is very good for your brain
The brain is a muscle. As with any muscle, working on it makes it grow bigger and stronger.
It's scientifically proven that if we study at least two foreign languages, our brain has better cognitive performance. The neuronal connections are better and the size of the hippocampus (brain area) is bigger.
This will improve your memory, concentration and conflict resolution skills. You will also be better able to multitask. Indeed, by learning French, you will often switch from one language to another, whether it be oral or written and even in your thoughts. This will considerably develop your ability to multitask. And no matter how old you are, you will have the the same results.
Reason number 2: Learning French will help you feel more confident
Well, for me, this point is obvious. This is what I work on the most with my students: the confidence to speak French.
Learning French, communicating in French will greatly improve your confidence.
By communicating in French, you are totally out of your comfort zone. You will learn not to be afraid of anything, and you will have the shoulders to face anything.
Reason number 3: Learning French will prevent dementia
We have seen that learning French is good for your brain, learning French will also keep you away from dementia.
Dementia is the decrease of mental capacities. Alzheimer's disease for example is a form of dementia.
In fact, according to a Canadian study, being multilingual would allow us to delay the first signs of dementia by 5 years compared to a person who is monolingual. How cool is that?
Reason number 4: Learning French helps you not to be depressed
Have you noticed that you are happier and more fulfilled since you started learning French?
It's normal, because learning French keeps you from getting depressed.
So, as you can see, learning a language stimulates a lot of parts of the brain and it also stimulates the ventral striatum, which is where the motivation is. By learning a language you will set goals and you will want to achieve them. Having goals and achieving them will help you to be happier.
It's even recommended for people who are depressed to learn a new language to get better.
A very good example is during the confinement, many of you decided to learn French, and I am sure that it helped you to overcome this difficult period.
How do you feel about that? Did French help you during the lockdown? Tell me in comments what you think.
Reason number 5: Learning French will bring you out of isolation
At first, learning a foreign language will open you up to a new culture. It will force you to enter a world that is unknown to you at the moment and make many new discoveries.
Secondly, learning French will lead you to talk to new people. And yes, you need to practice your French.
You will meet new people, virtual or not. You will become friends with people who have the same interests as you.
And who knows, you may even expand your circle of friends. Anyway, I know that this has happened in my conversation group, Ohlala French Coffee, many of my students have met in this group and now have become friends!
I'll see you soon for new adventures, in French of course! 🇫🇷