Getting back to the game

My close relative died at the end of the Summer and I haven’t been doing my reviews or really anything learning related since then. Didn’t really have energy or time for it. Seeing the email about the yearly Wanikani sales got me thinking that maybe I should try to continue my studies again. But I have over 2000 reviews which feel daunting. On the other hand I feel like it would be really hard to motivate myself to reset myself back and “loosing” all that hard work. Any advice how you have continued with similar situation?

And sorry if I posted this to the wrong section :sweat_smile: It has been a while since I have been here in the forums.


Choose a number of reviews to do each day depending on what’s reasonable for you and do them every day. It might make things easier to reorder reviews with a script, maybe oldest or lowest level first. You should also look at the last few levels you did and see how much you recognize from them. If you don’t remember any of it then reset a few levels so they’re out of the queue for now. It will take a while to get through a pile that big but it’s still faster than fully resetting.


Before anything, I’m so sorry for your loss. I know how hard it is to lose someone close to you, and I’m glad that your motivation for learning new skills is something that is helping you move forward after taking time for yourself.

I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus myself since having a rough work-life balance for the past few months (which accidentally turned into half a year now that I realize it :stuck_out_tongue: ). What I’m currently doing to clear out my 600 reviews that have piled up is pick a number of reviews to clear out each hour in the background while I’m working on other things. It can be as few as 10-20. I like the hourly commitment more than the daily because it splits it into very small consumable chunks than doing say 50 all in one go. It’s actually kept me super motivated and makes reviews into fun little sprints instead of one gigantic marathon. I get rid of my 20, do whatever I feel like, and an hour later I’m ready for more.


Get the Ultimate Reorder script, and start working the review pile from the lowest levels to the highest. If you get to a level where you feel you don’t remember enough of the material, reset to that level.

On the flip side, there are a number of people in your situation who are just working the pile. Maybe you can take inspiration from them.

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FYI, here’s my current thread: Scaling the 4724 review wall - 塵も積もれば山となる

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I know what you mean. I lost my mother in September. Between August and December, I did no lessons. I did manage to keep up with reviews, mostly, though some days I only did like 5-10. Enough to maintain my review streak (which is nearing the 1 year point!), but not a lot more. Still, at one point I hit around 500 reviews waiting for me.

Other’s have mentioned the reorder script, and that does work. I did lowest WK level first in my reductions. In that way, I was hitting the oldest material first, and, assuming I did enough reviews each day, nothing I did review could get worse. Higher level items were basically abandoned to fate rather than doing a reset. I don’t like resetting. I’d rather just let the SRS do its thing and I’ll catch up on the items I lost as I go.

My strategy for lowering the queue, once I had energy to do so was to set a goal of reducing the pile by a certain number per day. Generally 50 on weekdays and 100 on weekends. If I hit that number at any point during the day, I considered it good. If I could do more, I would, but it was entirely by choice at that point.

I tried to do reviews in small batches through the day. Often, I’d start a review session and immediately hit wrap up so I’d just do 10 at a time. I’d often do a few of these ‘sprints’ in a session, but again I only worried about one and a time and would stop if I felt my brain was starting to lag. If that happened, I’d wait an hour or two before doing another small batch.

Normally, I let WK pick the orders, but for pile reduction, I like to do reading/meaning back to back. It means I can go a little bit faster on the review and am less likely to make a mistake when two similar looking/meaning things come up at the same time. I have a tendency to correctly enter a reading/meaning for a review, then if a similar item comes up in the review, entering the other reading/meaning for that one rather than notice it’s a different thing altogether. And ‘similar’ becomes much broader when I’m drained which was all the time these last few months, so it was important to not let that kind of stupid mistake happen.

I went through the reviews quickly, just to get the pile down and have the psychological feeling of making progress. Working slowly, I’d probably have gotten more right, but been demotivated by the pile not shrinking fast enough. YMMV on that.

I have gotten back to it, more or less. I started lessons again, and actually leveled upon Christmas a few days ago. I’ve kept my apprentice pile (which I use to measure how many lessons to do) lower than I used to, and will continue to do so until I really feel ready. Right now, it feels slow, but I’m on winter break, so I want to make sure not to up it until I’m back to work and can assess whether it’s really slow.

Take it easy, figure out what is the right rate (and it is probably not what it was, at least for awhile) and you should do fine. Good luck!


My condolences. :slightly_frowning_face:

I originally started learning Hiragana for something to do while my mom was going through chemo. When she passed, I continued on for something to keep my mind occupied. My scheduled lessons and reviews gave me a bit of structure in what was a tumultuous time for me.

I had over 1200 reviews after a month long break and I decided to just tackle it over a few days. I did about 500 reviews per day and spent the rest of the month clearing doing reviews to get my apprentice count around 100 before I restarted lessons.

Honestly, I would recommend resetting a few levels and seeing how it goes, even though I did it the other way around.