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Have you ever felt like this when you speak a foreign language?

Have you ever felt as if you were being someone else when you speak a foreign language?
Sometimes when I speak in English, I feel like I'm being someone else.
It's not like being a totally different person from yourself but you feel that some parts of your personality are different or a bit changed.
Well, having written this topic so far, I jut started worrying that I could come across as a weirdo haha
Hoping someone can relate to my feeling and share your opinions or experiences about it :)

 

 

Sorry for my bad English.

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1. Yeah, I can totally relate (which doesn't necessarily mean you're not a weirdo).

2. Excellent English! Very impressive use of the verb "to be" as a verb of action, in the continuous aspect... are you sure you're not a native speaker of English?

 

Absolutely!!  I posed this same question to some of my students when I was working as an ESL teacher in Japan.  I said to them that when I speak French (or even the little bit of Japanese that I know) that my voice changes, tone, pitch, volume, and that I will say things or use words in the foreign language that I would not normally use in my native English.  My facial expressions change, and my posture changes.

I had some students tell me that they are more comfortable saying "no" in English than in Japanese, and that they speak louder and that their entire body language changes when they use English.  One girl said that she was even more able to speak her mind when she spoke in English. 

Isn't that interesting?  Here are a couple of articles that discuss  how language and grammar may shape even the way we think!  http://www.pri.org/stories/2011-10-25/new-research-suggests-language-structure-may-play-factor-personal-saving

And here: http://www.newsweek.com/why-language-may-shape-our-thoughts-81725?piano_t=1  (this link might not work because I have used up my 5 free articles on newsweek.  )

> Phil

Now I feel relieved that I'm not the only one! haha

Thank you very much for the compliment. I'm very much flattered!!!

Oh, I hope that you don't believe that I'm a weirdo! :P

Thank you!

> Staphanie

Wow you said almost everything that I wanted to put into words but couldn't! Thank you!!

"my voice changes, tone, pitch, volume, and that I will say things or use words in the foreign language that I would not normally use in my native English.  My facial expressions change, and my posture changes." Yes, exactly! I totally agree with you :D I'm so glad that someone could understand me, and from your experience, it seems that there are some people feel that way!

I always woner why that happens and feel it's very interesting at the same time :)

Thank you very much for your comment and interesting articles!!!

I'll definitely read them! Luckily(or not), I'll have much time tomorrow since typhoon is coming!

Thank you!!

Yes! I seem to put a lot more expression into my speech when I speak Japanese compared to when I speak English!

> Kate

Interesting! I think I do the opposite :9

Thank you so much for your comment :)

 

You're not the only one! For some reason, I feel bolder when I'm speaking Spanish. haha :)

Language creates image

 

I always wonder about this topic too. For westerners, they might feel very different when they learn adn speak languages which are very far from their cultures. And the same thing might be applied to Asian people studying European languages, in my opinion.

 

I also wonder what about foreign languages close to our culure?

Do we feel the gap as much, say, when to speak some East Asian language? 

It is hard for me to imagine because I have never studied other language but English.

I could only imagine it could be less so when staying in some East Asian country and speaking their language that is close to my mother tongue.


The strangest thing to me is that when I speak Englsih in Japan,

I do not feel the gap as much as I was in the US. Even talking with native English speakers in Japan, less gap. So, the environment is doing some trick, I think. 


It feels a bit strange to post this English comment in Japan!

> altini

Glad to know that I'm not the only one! haha

Thank you for your comment :)

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