Advice/How to be consistent

Hey guys, I’ve been using Wanikani since last summer and I absolutely love it. I’m just wondering how I can best approach it going forward so I don’t fall off again and get discouraged.

Here’s the situation: I’ll let my reviews pile up a bit when life gets busy, then one day I’ll sit down and go through the 457 left in the queue and feel quite accomplished. lol Then, I’m staring down 100+ new lessons. However, while reviews are easy for me usually to get done, looking at a mountain of lessons makes me feel uneasy. This is because I like to sit down with a notebook and clear a block of time to do new lessons, so that I can draw diagrams, really focus on burning in mnemonics, and take my time learning new content.

The problem is, when I’m going through my day I often don’t feel in the right headspace to learn a bunch of new content, and so I end up pushing it off over and over, and then before I know it, my reviews have piled up while I’m waiting for the “perfect time” to learn all these new lessons.

So, my NEW idea is to set an hour every morning, first thing, to do Wanikani, everyday, 7 days a week.
My big question to you guys is, should I say “this hour is for new lessons only” and only do New Lessons in that hour unless new lessons are at 0? Or should I make it a “this hour is split and the first 30 mins will be lessons and the 2nd 30 mins will be reviews”, unless one or the other is at 0, kinda thing?

Either that, or whatever idea you guys have that has helped you stay consistent would be super helpful. I’m a lifetime member and my goal is to complete to level 60.

Also, my Japanese speaking is way more advanced than my wk level, I’m intermediate/conversational and have been speaking for 15+ years.



Do all your reviews before any new lessons. Otherwise lessons get way ahead of you. I visit Wanikani at least twice a day, and I finish all the reviews first, then all the lessons.


I mean it always comes down to personal preference but in order to stay consistent I believe that clearing you reviews first is the main goal. Having a large pile of reviews to deal with can feel daunting and cause further procrastination, leading to times of pain and sorrow.
I would say that once the reviews are dealt with, you can start doing lessons.

Personally, In order to not procrastinate with the (vocab) lessons, I have a set time and day when I deal with my lessons (8pm on the second day of a level). This happened naturally for me somehow but there are days when I really don’t feel like doing the lessons as that hour arrives. I just bite the bullet and get them over with cause I know that I will gain from it in the end. After finishing my pile of lessons it usually didn’t feel as heavy as I thought it would and my items tend to stick regardless of head space.


Doing new lessons was always something I looked forward to because it was tangible progress. Just do your lessons in small batches of say, 5-10 or whatever’s comfortable, so that they resurface in similarly small review batches.

To keep myself from getting overwhelmed, I would sit down for WK at least 3 times a day to hit reviews as often as possible. (3+ times daily is a bit much, but I really wanted to go fast.) Even when there were times I wouldn’t mind doing 200 reviews at once, that leads to sudden batches of ~60 reviews in the future when they all come back, so I’d try to avoid that scenario as much as possible.

Another thing I did was use the Undo script on Apprentice items. A quick rundown of levels here:


I might be a bit fuzzy on the specifics, but I think missing anything at Guru2 or higher sends the item back to Guru1. Missing an item at Guru1 sends it back to Apprentice3. While leveling, I’d use the Undo button on anything that’s at the Apprentice levels to prevent my reviews from getting absolutely overloaded with rapid-fire re-reviews. I wouldn’t let anything slip back to Apprentice1 unless it was something I absolutely wanted to have locked down in memory.

Lastly, if you find yourself staring down a massive mountain of reviews, I’d recommend NOT doing them all at once, but instead to tackle it all in multiple large chunks that should reduce it to 0 faster than they get piled back on. Spread those reviews around!

Fastest progress possible
Review SRS Level Total Wait Next Level
Lesson Apprentice 1 - 4h
1 Apprentice 2 4h 8h
2 Apprentice 3 12h ~1d
3 Apprentice 4 1d 11h ~2d
4 Guru 1 3d 10h ~1w
5 Guru 2 1w 3d 9h ~2w
6 Master 3w 3d 8h ~1M
7 Enlightened 7w 5d 7h ~4M
8 Burned 24w 6d 6h -
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Right, thanks!

So, by walling all my items at A3, at worst I only see a term twice over 2 days instead of 4 times over 3 days. This reduces the immediate workload drastically.

It’s really easy too; anything that’s currently at Apprentice gets a free pass with the undo script. A3 just happens to be where items land when I swing and miss at Guru.

I’ve just reset from lvl 17 (after months off due to health issues), but the routine that has worked for me has been:

7am - a batch of lessons (previously 21 items, this time around,16 - I have found doing a consistant number, regularly, helps me establish a routine - see below for more on the importance of routine); followed by all available reviews (I prefer to have a fresh, clear mind when I do my lessons so, unlike bolaurent, I do them before, not after, reviews)
11am - all available reviews (including 1st review of this morning’s lessons)
6:30pm - all available reviews (because of the timings Kumirei has shown for Apprentice 4, this is the hour-block when the bulk of reviews are)
7pm - 2nd review of this morning’s lessons

There’s a great write-up in Textfugu about ritualising routine behaviours - by making them a regular, unwavering part of your daily routine you avoid the need for willpower to get them done. I would recommend reading the whole thing from the beginning, as it also addresses issues such as motivation and excuse-making - I found it really helpful.


I usually set aside between 20-30 minutes to do lessons with a usual goal of doing half of the vocab available. On days I have kanji, I pretty much do those lessons immediately or at another time that’s convenient for my schedule.

If you want to do your reviews at the same time, that’s up to you. I tend to do my reviews throughout the day, while some people on here do their reviews once or twice a day. However in the end, it’s your decision, so you have to find a groove you’re comfortable with.

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I had the same issue. Stopped for two weeks, two weeks became two months because it was so daunting to try to crack into the pile of 600+ reviews, and so demoralizing to see my 80-90% accuracy rate become 20-40%.

The best trick I’ve found since getting back into it is to take something segmented that I was already going to do, and fit sets of 10-20 reviews in between segments. So I would do 20 reviews every 5 floors in Disgaea, or 10 after every fight in Darkest Dungeon. If you don’t play games, maybe do 10 at fixed intervals while watching a show.

Once you’ve got your reviews cleared out, don’t stop there! This is your chance to chip away at the lessons. I recommend sets of five if you’re doing them in the segmented pattern, as it takes about as long to do 5 lessons as 10 reviews in my experience.

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Thanks TO EVERYONE for the amazing and thoughtful replies. I’ve combined all of the golden nuggets of wisdom into a strategy and routine that works for me (2 weeks in, so far so good!)

All the best, and congrats to all you level 50+'ers!!! :smiley:


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