Keeping motivated

While i am currently unemployed and sitting home in my apartment all day, i thought this was the time. By the time the world is back to normal i would come out of my apartment and speak almost fluently japanese (yes a bit of a overstatment, but you get the gist).
The problem is that even if i study more than before in terms of hours spent, i cant seem to get anything done. Everything takes twice as long to do as before, and i feel drained of energy. It also don’t help that my review average in Wanikani has come close to 70% and my Bunpro reviews are close to 60%. (which makes renews pile up fast.:confounded:

I can’t seem to remember new things i study, and the new items takes forever to feel familiar, even if I still don’t remember the answers. How to you keep motivated through all this? Have you changed how you try to learn japanese, or are you putting your studies on a small break? :shushing_face:

Sounds like just a plateau, I think we all get them. For me, I eventually bored of reviewing the same wrong answers and that is when it starts to click in. I find it helps to stop adding lessons to cool off reviews, study some outside material, have some patience and let the SRS work its torture magic towards mastery. What is great is that I never have to spend time thinking about what I need to work on, it’s all painfully right there. Motivation always comes back being able to recognize what I struggled with in the wild; a small victory in a sea of failures. Occasionally I just want to do other things like listening or reading instead, just so it holds my attention better. It’s a way to relax a bit without any study guilt.

What are your most challenged grammar points right now? Share and practice!



i hate studying. it took me ten years (or maybe more, maybe less, did i actually finished it, there are rumours about it) to finish university just because i hated it. i wasn’t even attending lessons, just working at different jobs, trying to gain experince and get to know others.

and i have no idea what i’m trying to tell right now.

but, if you just stick with it, if you love it you can do it. just try to read them one by one, try to understand each phrase. look for the root and suffixes. think loud. i always go like this “they used this because they wanted to tell this, so it has to be this”.

if i get correct in first time, that’s great! if not, also great! because now i can learn. i can understand why it didn’t work out at the first time.

and being at home sucks, at least these days. the other times you were doing your stuff; working, socialising, doing sports whatnot. but now there’s nothing you can focus on. that’s why you feel overwhelmed. because nothing is distracting you from studying. the other times you were sitting on the desk and that’s it, you’d already know and feel that it’s study time. but now you are aimless. there’s nothing exciting.

that’s why you are unmotivated right now.

so my suggestion is don’t overthink about it. but grow some balls and show your mind that you are still on charge.

ps: and why not try pomodoro method, i find it amazing.

have a great day!


Do more listening practice. Even if it’s just a bunch of simple N5 stuff. There’s a fair amount on YouTube.

You could (if you feel confident enough) try chatting with some people on HelloTalk. Even if you don’t do voice calls, you can just make posts and let people correct your Japanese. It’s a good place to try experimenting with your knowledge.

And if you don’t want to study at all, just take a break. Watch some anime, do some exercise, take a nap, read a book (in English). Everybody needs a little time off every now and then.


あまり and all vocab connected to that in some way are really confusing. But I see them so often that I want to have them in my review pile, even if I fail 50/50 :sweat_smile:

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I have not talked to anyone native yet. It feels too scary to me :grimacing: I stil don’t understand all N5 grammar. Want to be closer to N3 before I take the leap :see_no_evil:

I was about mid N4 when I started so don’t wait too long to start!


At least with WK, my experience is that there’s a limit to how fast you can learn new stuff, and trying to go over that just makes you forget everything. So I’d recommend picking a pace you are comfortable with for WK and Bunpro and just spending the rest of the time reading or watching Anime or whatever.

It definitely is hard for me to stay motivated sometimes. Looking back on the progress you’ve made so far can help.

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I usually level up in 15 days, but since my life now is nothing but free time I tried to half that. And yeah, just like you said that was too fast for me. :weary:

I messed up when I first started Bunpro and raced through it, man did that make it difficult. Nothing actually stuck with me. I actually ended up making an Anki deck to do the SRS the proper way to get the reviews down because I wasn’t learning anything. Now that they are back down I vowed never to make that mistake again (On any SRS system, be it Anki, Bunrpo, WaniKani, etc…) so now I do about 5-10 a day on each system and all my reviews and find it MUCH more manageable and remember in the 75% range.

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I’m also on a plateau/having current events getting me down. I’m not actively studying or doing reviews right now and since the JLPT will most likely get cancelled here I’m not beating myself up too hard for taking a break.

Games are usually the only guarantee that I can do no matter my mood or motivation levels. I recently picked up the FF7 Remake and had to pay a premium since Japanese pricing sucks $84 vs $60 but it was worth it since I’m having a blast while still learning. Just learned 十中八九 from it and its nice to just enjoy Japanese for a change instead of feeling like I’m fighting it through reviews.


I have found writing everything down helps - like I’m back in language lessons from secondary school. I’ll write in Japanese with one colour and English the other and have on of those subject writing pads to organise where I put it.

I have a section for grammar, story translating, audio transcriptions and vocabulary.

Sorry if I am staring the obvious, but maybe think back to what worked for you at school or in your previous work that helps you remember things.

As for motivation: take it easy on yourself. The world is in a crazy place right now too and there’s a pressure to be productive with time at home. Learning a language is a life long experience. Be proud of every little improvement you make even if it’s recognising a kanji in a piece of writing or watching anime or Japanese shows and understanding part of what is being said.

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