Do languages change our personality(ies)?

Elf
Posts125Likes 95Joined 3/9/2018LocationSkopje / MK
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Macedonian
Other Arabic - Gulf, English, French, Spanish, Serbian

"Learn a new language and get a new soul." - Czech proverb 


Have you ever noticed yourself changing your tone, approach, attitude when talking in another language than your own for example? Or if you are bilingual, does switching to another language changea your personality? 

Or have you been told that you sound differently when speaking in another language? 


I have been told about, and have noticed myself, the different vibe I embody when I speak in French, in comparison to the approach I take when speaking in English. And I have also noticed that the more I allow this switch to happen, and the more it intrigues me, it actually loosens up. I have also been told that I sound differently when speaking English vs. speaking French. I have noticed that my thoughts sometimes change too, depending on the language I am thinking in. (Though thinking in another language besides your own, is a bit advanced and I think rarely happens). Have you ever noticed that? What do you think it is due to? 


The main difference is when I am communicating or trying to convey something in Macedonian. I have noticed that since I know the collective situation here and interests/topics, my intention when speaking changes. It can be a very dramatic change, or just a slight one. I believe it is due to what I am also receiving while communicating with native speakers or reading local news. Everyone leaves me a different impression, and inspires me on a different level, so I sometimes have different messages to cross when speaking different languages. I always felt kind of warm feeling when I am speaking in French, and it's not just because of the melodic sounds the language produces (depending for whose ear that is of course), but also because whenever I interact with French people, I get a different vibe that probably stays with me and within me without me being aware of it even!  

These are all mild nuances now, but they used to be more obvious. 

Have you noticed anything like that within yourself? Or been told maybe? 


This is one of the suggestions too: 


"...what is seen as a change in personality is most probably simply a shift in attitudes and behaviors that correspond to a shift in situation or context, independent of language." 


https://www.psychologytoday.com/intl/blog/life-bilingual/201111/change-language-change-personality 


Do you agree? And if you HAVE noticed anything similar, do you think these apparent switches are beneficial, or can harm us? 


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#1
Dwarf
Posts62Likes 27Joined 22/9/2018LocationLagos / NG
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Other French

I haven't noticed anything probably because I'm just learning my second language. I can't wait to hear from others though. The way you explain it makes is kind of adventurous. Its like you're experiencing a new you.

If I was to choose being an animal, I will like to be an Eagle.

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#2
Elf
Posts125Likes 95Joined 3/9/2018LocationSkopje / MK
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Macedonian
Other Arabic - Gulf, English, French, Spanish, Serbian

Yeah, probably not that much, but depends how much you dive into the language 

And how solid your identity/personality/self concept is I assume :) 


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#3
Hobbit
Posts40Likes 28Joined 3/9/2018LocationCebu City / PH
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Other Arabic - Standard, Chinese - Mandarin, Korean, Malay

I believe so yes. Learning a foreign language will also let you learn foreign culture. Somehow your understanding for foreign culture will let your personality grow/change in some ways. 


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#4
Elf
Posts105Likes 21Joined 5/9/2018Locationlahore / PK

i dont think so there is any direct relation in personality and language.

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#5
Dwarf
Posts62Likes 27Joined 22/9/2018LocationLagos / NG
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imran.khalil0000 wrote:

i dont think so there is any direct relation in personality and language.

Why do you think so? 

If I was to choose being an animal, I will like to be an Eagle.

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#6
Elf
Posts105Likes 21Joined 5/9/2018Locationlahore / PK

Because personality is more influenced by the culture and customs of a society and a family. And language is a channel that is used to express those learnt behaviors. 

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#7
Elf
Posts125Likes 95Joined 3/9/2018LocationSkopje / MK
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Macedonian
Other Arabic - Gulf, English, French, Spanish, Serbian

So, imrah, automatically, it does influence your personality. If language is a channel, it means it does influence. And language IS part of the customs and culture, dont you think so? Automatically, it's all connected 

That's what I conclude from this at least 


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#8
Ent
Posts742Likes 460Joined 18/3/2018LocationBellingham / US
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Learning Korean
Other Chinese - Mandarin, French, Japanese, Russian, Spanish, Swahili, Tagalog, Thai

Mai wrote:
"Learn a new language and get a new soul." - Czech proverb

To have another language is to possess a second soul. Charlemagne

......he was sent into the Böhmerwald (modern Bohemia) to deal with the Slavs living there (Bohemian tribes, ancestors of the modern Czechs).... maybe that explains it!


To answer the OP, yes, my personality is different in different languages.

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#9
Ranger
Posts228Likes 119Joined 16/9/2018Location
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Spanish
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I don't think learning a language influenced my personality. I attended to a bilingual school. Half of the hours in Spanish, the other in English, and I always felt the same. It wasn't until I moved here that my personality changed.  

-Ari-

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#10
Dwarf
Posts62Likes 27Joined 22/9/2018LocationLagos / NG
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 Maybe the learning phase isn't the time for change of personality. I think it's the actual practice stage. Does it make sense?

If I was to choose being an animal, I will like to be an Eagle.

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#11
Elf
Posts125Likes 95Joined 3/9/2018LocationSkopje / MK
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Macedonian
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Maybe you're right smartchiny, but might be like that for everything. While we learn, we absorb. When we "perform", we perform, we become 

Interesting insight though I agree 


Hey Ari, where do you live now? 

Thank you 


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#12
Ranger
Posts228Likes 119Joined 16/9/2018Location
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Mai wrote:

Maybe you're right smartchiny, but might be like that for everything. While we learn, we absorb. When we "perform", we perform, we become

Interesting insight though I agree

Hey Ari, where do you live now?

Thank you


I live in Texas, US

-Ari-

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#13
Dwarf
Posts50Likes 35Joined 6/10/2018LocationIrpin / UA
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When we learn a foreign language, we also acquire some cultural features of the folk. I believe in that sense there might be some subtle personality changes. On the other hand, many language-learners claim that they can express themselves differently in different languages. The same happens to me. For instance, when I speak Russian I tend to be more open-minded and confident, when I use Ukrainian I am rather charming and humorous; when I chat in English I am neutral etc. To me, every language shapes my personality in its own unique way.


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#14
Elf
Posts114Likes 78Joined 8/10/2018LocationPH
Native
English, Tagalog
Learning Japanese

Vladyslava wrote:
When we learn a foreign language, we also acquire some cultural features of the folk.


This. I notice a slight change in the way I think whenever I switch languages.. maybe this is because of the fact that the we convey information using different language differ for some reason, it's kinda like you get to have a distinct personality per language you use


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#15
Dwarf
Posts58Likes 27Joined 8/10/2018LocationManila / PH
Other English, Japanese, Korean

Oh, this makes sense! Now I noticed, I feel different when I'm speaking in a foreign language. Especially when you are trying really hard to mimic their accent. It seems like you're indeed becoming a different person. 

mismei

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#16