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What Have Languages Brought To My Life

by William Gist

Before I continue writing this article, I must mention that this is my own personal view of how languages left their mark on me. It is completely subjective, but it seems that there are a couple of people out there who felt the same. I was told many times “no need to learn a new language, English is enough” (or any other internationally used language).

But now I am in need to learn a new language, Arabic. Why so? Because an internationally circulated language is not enough anymore due to my surroundings. Throughout my study years, I was in contact with many languages, and as silly as it may sound, foreign tongues truly changed the way I think and perceive things.


So let me tell you what languages brought to my life.


Languages boosted my confidence massively. I may not have a special talent in one specific language, I’m more of a Jack of all trades, master of none kind of person. The moment when I was old enough to get into the working field, my bits and pieces of knowledge seemed to help.

Even if it was just a simple matter of translating what a Spanish native was saying for my colleagues. But English seemed to be something I was truly good at, and I realized that when people around me were saying “wow, hearing you I thought you’re a native”. This motivated me to start learning new languages, knowing the level I can reach if I work for it.



Even though languages gave me self confidence, I still remain humble. When you learn a language, you don’t learn only a method of communication, but you also dive into the culture.

Especially Arab culture! The stories, the food, folklore, history, literature, the diversity which comes along with the high number of countries that speak different dialects of the same Arabic. It makes you feel small in front of such greatness. Languages taught me that each and every one of us is different in a way or another and that there is no right or wrong way of looking at or thinking of a matter.

Amazing travel experiences


As I roamed around the streets of my Middle Eastern city, I found a hard time communicating only in English. Sometimes the meaning gets lost in the translation. And when I started learning some basic Arabic words and the Arabic alphabet, suddenly it was way easier to handle my surroundings. Also, to my surprise, half of the people I met in Istanbul were Arab speakers!


In my language journey, there is one Arabic app that truly helped me: Kaleela! It is offered by kaleela.com and if you check the website, you will see a bunch of useful articles on basic Arabic words and sentences. I always seemed to struggle with pronunciation, and the voice recognition feature of the app helped me go in the right direction. Give it a shot, you might have a nice surprise!

But I found myself in need of learning a new language, now that English is no longer enough. That language would be Arabic.

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