When learning a language, sometimes it’s good to check in with oneself and reassess one’s goals. Why are you learning Chinese? What’s your motivation? Whether it’s for personal growth, interest, or obtaining a specific objective, there is a myriad of good reasons to learn Mandarin Chinese.
And, just in case the pandemic and the closed borders have been dampening your spirit a little, here are 9 meowsome reasons to learn or keep learning Chinese.
So cheer up and let’s keep learning!
1. China might be closed, but that doesn’t mean you can’t visit other Chinese-speaking places.
Yeah, waiting for China to reopen is taking a while. But, hey, there are plenty of Chinese-speaking places in the world. The great news is that some have reopened already!
Did you know Singapore, for instance, has the Chinese language as one of its official languages? Plus you can travel there again.
Taiwan is slowly reopening too. There’s still a quarantine, true, but it’s being regularly shortened. Here’s to hoping there’ll be none one day soon! With the fact you can now learn in Traditional Chinese on Ninchanese, you have everything you need to get ready to go!
2. China might be far but there are plenty of occasions to speak Chinese around you.
Next to English and Spanish, Chinese is the most spoken language in the world.
So, look around you. You’re bound to find occasions to speak Chinese. To hear Chinese.
Chinatowns. Stores. People.
DC’s Chinatown is one of the many places you can go to practice speaking Chinese – Photo by Richard Tao
Go talk! There are plenty of occasions, everywhere! Just the other day, I chatted a good hour with the salespeople in a Chinese tea shop in Bangkok’s Chinatown.
Finding occasions to speak in Chinese, when you’re learning, is essential. Otherwise, you get rusty! Believe me, from experience, getting a chance to speak in Mandarin, if anything, will act as a great motivation to review what you’ve learned in Chinese so far and practice some more in Chinese!
Did you know, for instance, that Richmond, Canada has a 74% Asian population? It has the highest concentration of Chinese nationals outside of China. Why not schedule a trip there?
And if there are no real occasions where you live, go online. Learn Chinese online. Find people to talk to online. Come chat in Chinese on our Discord chat. Game in Chinese with Chinese speakers. Find yourself an online pen pal. The options are endless, you just have to go looking for them!
Related: What is the Chinese language?
3. It’s good for you from an economic point of view
What’s the downside to knowing an additional language in the job market? None, really.
What’s the downside to knowing the language spoken by one of the biggest economic powers in the world? Even more non-existent. In fact, it’s another meowsome reason to learn Chinese!
China’s brand new skyscrapers – Photo by Road Trip with Raj
From working in China to working with China, to working with Chinese people, for Chinese people, in Chinese, you have plenty of options.
Do you want to do business with China? Have Chinese suppliers?
Do you want to do translations? Interpretation?
In all those fields and many others, knowing Mandarin Chinese, and Business Chinese is a huge plus. So get your learning on!
Liking these reasons to learn Chinese so far? Here’s more!
4. It allows you to see the world from a different perspective
By learning the Chinese language, you’re opening yourself up to a different way of seeing the world, of perceiving it.
See the world differently. Photo by Yiran Ding
Learning Mandarin Chinese helps you have a different world approach. Concepts and ideas are expressed differently in Chinese.
It can be small things, like the fact you don’t “take” medicine, for instance, you “eat” it in Chinese ((You 吃药). And bigger things. For example, the Chinese sentence order is wildly different from, say, the way sentences are shaped in English.
Or the fact that you and me, we might think “I” and point to ourselves. We’re used to thinking solo. A Chinese speaker, when tasked with drawing “I”, the self, might, on the contrary, draw themselves surrounded by others. The concept of “self” is a little different in the Middle Kingdom.
It’s the little details like that that give you insights into how the Chinese people think. Personally, I find that endlessly fascinating. It’s definitely one of the reasons I’ve never stopped learning Chinese.
Plus, if expanding your understanding of cultural differences wasn’t your cup of tea, seeing the world in a different way helps you grow your critical thinking skills. With all the fake news and conspiracy theories swirling around, you (and we all) seriously need that…
5. It’s good for your brain
Learning any language is wonderful for your brain. It develops new areas of your mind and, in particular, strengthens your natural ability to focus and process information.
Learn Chinese and fire up your brain connections! – Photo by Moritz Kindler
Mandarin Chinese, with its beautiful characters and lack of alphabet? It’s like acid for the brain. In a meowsome, wonderful way. It creates in your brain all those new connections. Purrfect to form and strengthen your brain. Go for it.
For instance, a 2003 study found that people who speak Mandarin Chinese use both temporal lobes of their brains to understand the language. In contrast, English speakers only use the left temporal lobe. Unlock a whole new temporal lobe!
There are plenty of other reasons for learning Mandarin that are good for your brain:
- It keeps your brain healthy. No neural network degradation for you, good person!
- It helps form good thinking patterns in your brain.
- It develops new areas of your mind and utilizes other parts of your brain.
- Some studies say it even helps with math skills!
What’s not to like?
6. Chinese culture and history are still very cool
You can’t visit the huge country that is China at the moment, sure. But China still has an extremely interesting history and culture you can explore from afar and learn more about.
From a rich culture, which led to some amazing inventions for instance, to epic historical events, there’s a lot to discover. And why not do that in Chinese directly? That’s a great reason to learn Chinese!
If you like the idea of learning more about Chinese history but aren’t into history books or museums, there are many many historical C-dramas, as well as youtubers you can check out! Also, check out Ninchanese where you’ll learn Chinese culture as you learn Chinese!
7. Reason to learn Chinese: You gain access to a whole new world of content and culture
There’s a large quantity of high-quality Chinese-language content out there, you just need to know how to find it!
From Music to Games, to Movies, to Art, to books… there are a lot of Chinese-speaking artists to discover.
Related: 30 Chinese celebrities to know about
On TV, Cdramas and Taiwanese dramas have a lot of fans, and rightly so!
Romantic and historical C-dramas get their fair share of fans, and Chinese Wuxia and XianXia are also two media genres that are very popular.
Related: Platforms to watch Chinese videos.
Films to watch
Music and books
In books, there’s a lot to discover too! From Chinese classics like the JingPing Mei, or… to science fiction novels, China and Chinese-language artists have a lot to offer. Take the time to explore!
If you’re more a fan of video games, lots of great offers there too.
8. Beautiful language Chinese characters
Mandarin Chinese is an amazing language, and its Chinese characters are endlessly fascinating.
There’s the fact Chinese is the oldest written language in the world, dating back to over 4000 years ago.
There’s the fact there’s no alphabet, and that Chinese characters are usually logical. Most Chinese characters contain components and a phonetic component. There are also many opportunities for art with Chinese characters, especially Chinese calligraphy.
In short, Chinese characters are an excellent reason to learn the Chinese language. At the very least, explore the language!
Chinese characters also enable very intriguing poetry to exist. Ever heard of the poem composed only of the sound “shi”? It has a meaning, of course, and is written using many different characters!
9. [Insert your own reason to learn Chinese]
Here’s a secret. All that matters is that you find pleasure in knowing the language.
Truth be told, you don’t need a specific good reason to keep learning a language. You need yours. All you need is to want to learn it. If the language interests you, you’re golden. No need for a huge, lofty goal. It can be a very small goal. Or even, just the fact you derive pleasure from learning and knowing the language.
So find what motivates you and keep learning! Everyone has their own reason to learn Chinese.
Whatever your reason, we’re here to help you learn Mandarin Chinese! It’s all happening on Ninchanese.
And one more thing…
With Ninchanese, you get a complete method to learn Chinese which has you speaking, reading, writing, and more in Chinese. What’s more, whether you’re a beginner or an advanced learner, there’s content your level on Ninchanese and plenty more!
The Nincha Team