And my instagram. I found that they were just too much of a distraction from my Japanese studies, my child, and just life in general. On the plus side i have been studying Japanese more. Mainly just srsing, listening to music, reading manga, watching anime, and reading books, but on the minus, side, sometimes i get bored, and i just use other sites to take their place, but i don’t spend nearly as much time on them, so there’s that. Also, i’m recreating my own little nuetrino knockoff, based on what i’ve read on various blogs,(i may talk about that in a future post). So, if anyone out there reads this or cares. That’s what i’ve been up to.
For the longest time, i was sooo afraid of speaking Japanese, for fear of making mistakes, but after seeing Benny Lewis(Fluent in 3 months) horribly stumble through his Japanese,It made me less afraid to speak, and so yesterday after a few years i spoke to someone in Japanese on Skype! I’ve got to say it wasn’t that bad really. I made a lot of mistakes, but so what? Also I’ve gotta say i was better than i thought i was( lots of room for improvement though). So i’m definitely gonna be doing it again. The point i’m trying to make is don’t be afraid to speak, even if you make a lot of mistakes, because the time you spend being afraid is time you could be using to get better.
After years of starting and stopping, and restarting Remembering the Kanji (RTK) I’m finally making some progress again. So what took so long?Well when i first started rtk in 2004, i was really trying hard to use my “imaginative memory” to form pictures of the kanji in my head, but some of the names Heisig gives the Kanji are kind of abstract, making it a little difficult to form a picture of them, so i would be stuck for days, weeks or even months trying to find one. Because you see i’m the kind of person that likes to do things “by the book” so i think that by not trying new methods it really hindered my progress. Then i started reading post at ajatt.com about kanji card formats and so i tried different things, and last year i deleted my old deck and started over with the lazy kanji format . I gotta say i really like it. Not having to stop and think of a picture for every kanji really speeds things up. So every day i have been inputting kanji ( well, not everyday. some days i’m too busy or lazy) and i’ve done more in the span of a year than in the 10 years since i started RTK! Now i just have to power through the last 246 kanji and then i’ll be ready to move on to sentences. You have no idea how hype i am right now! I can’t wait!
Let’s Pretend for a minute that you have a flight for Japan that leaves in one week. Flight 743 leaves gate A78 at 8:30 am. You’ve been procrastinating on your Japanese studies for weeks, months, maybe even years. (“I’ll study kanji later, i’m tired” ” i’ll read that Japanese book tomorrow, the two and a half men marathon is on” blah, blah blah) Maybe all this time you’ve been lazy, maybe you’ve been scared,(kinda like myself at times) but there’s no time for that my friend, Flight 743 leaves gate a78 at 8:30 am in one week. The time for whining and procrastinating are over. For when you get to Japan next week, i garantee all that whining and procrastination will pay off. When despite all your “studying”, you can barely speak 10 words, and understand even less kanji. Then imagine how messed up that would be. But my friend, it doesn’t have to be this way. For when you take that trip to Japan next week, you can, no will be the Nihongo master. Let’s rewind back. Let’s say that for a year you’ve had the mindset , that “hey i have a flight to Japan in a week, I’d better get started now!” Then there would be a new found sense of urgency, “a study now, or f*&% up later” mentality. There would be no more time to sleep all day, no more time for two and a half men marathons, etc. There would only be time for Japanese music,books, anime, tv, basically ajatt. So if every Monday for a year you say this, then by the end of the year, when ( not if, but when, because you are going to Japan.) you take that trip to Japan for real, you’ll be ready. You’ll be reading street signs and newspapers, chatting it up with locals and everything. You will totally pwn Japanese! But enough of listening to me, your flight to Japan leaves in a week… What are you gonna do about it???
Recently i have been using paper flashcard to learn kanji. I write them in the heisig format(keyword and story on front,kanji on the back) but i use a lazy kanji/heisig format to study them. The way this works is that i look at the picture first to see if i can remember it, then i turn it over and look at the keyword and try to write the kanji from memory. I am finding that this is working just as well as a digital srs, plus it’s just as fun. 🙂 The reason i use flashcards instead of digital media is not becaue i hate digital media, no no quite the oposite. I love digital media in all it’s forms video games, mp3, mp4,dvds, etc but it’s mainly for convenience, because i work at a Home Depot, so i can’t walk around with a cellphone in my hand all day( i’ve gotten in trouble for that twice already…lol) so for me and for the sake of my job it’s better to go analog. I don’t have to worry about turning it on, or wasting the battery life of my phone, or getting in trouble with the Home Depot management. I’ve been doing this for about two weeks now, and so far i’ve had good results. Well, thats it for now. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.