Tag Archives: cross cultural friendships

Nine reasons why cross cultural friendships are great for your brain

Nine reasons why cross cultural friendships are great for your brain:
1. MULTICULTURALISM
This is the ability to adapt and mix with people of different cultural background, religions, and races. You get to experience a rich selection of experiences that help create and support mental flexibility.
2. INCREASED KNOWLEDGE BASE
Not only does it promote cultural diversity, but it also increases your knowledge of different cultures. This leads to a much larger foundation of consolidated information: History, geography, theology, cultural traditions, literature, and so much more.
3. DIVERSITY IN LANGUAGES
The award-winning writer, Jhumpa Lahiri, was born in London to Indian parents. Her first language was Bengali, followed by Hindi and English. As an adult, she learned Italian, and wrote an entire book in this language. Creating neural pathways through language is a huge gift to your brain.
4. OPEN-MINDEDNESS
Making friends from different cultures also opens your mind to possibilities and new ideologies, such as seeing different approaches to solving problems. Broadening worldviews feeds frontal lobe functioning.
5. TRAVEL AND EXPOSURE
If for no other reason, the opportunity to travel and see the world should be enough to get you to enjoy cultural diversity. Travel doesn’t just give you insight but gives you the opportunity to have real experiences with different people. Being out of your familiar mental set promotes planning, organization, attention, and metacognition (the ability to think about your own thinking).
6. TOLERANCE
Ethnic and religious tolerance can be promoted by making friends from different cultures. The ability to be a part of someone else’s life and their journey can be a lesson in empathy. Empathy or EQ, has been equated with higher social, career, and interpersonal functioning., see below.
7. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
Meeting people of the different classes, races and ethnicity teach you to treat people accordingly and respect them individually. Empathy skills require practice, and have a myriad of positive outcomes, such as stronger mental health, positive relationships, and even job success. 
8. INCREDIBLE FOOD
Definitely important is the ability to exercise your taste buds with a wide variety of meals and feed your brain. The deliciousness may be a feast for the senses, but can also create better nutrition habits by learning from people around the world.
9. SELF EXAMINATION.
Diverse friendships encourage a greater ability to reflect on one’s own culture, with an observing eye. The result of this practice is that we go back to our roots. Due to this, we not only draw the positive points about our lives and thereby learn to appreciate them more, but we also think about certain negative practices or drawbacks of our culture that could use improvement. 

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