How to take an extended break?

This sounds like the very best advice to me.


You probably have like 50 reviews a day tops, what’s the problem?

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Seconding what everyone else has said – it’s going to depend on your level what this looks like, but finding some way to check in with the language as close as possible to every day, no matter how little it has to be per day, is likely to make you come back in far better shape than if you 100% drop it.


Best way would be to force yourself to find a very small amount of time to do a set number of reviews. 5-20 of them should not take more than 5 minutes. Stick to your number and don’t be tempted to do more.

If you do have an extra 10 minutes or so, you could try watching a video from Comprehensive Japanese.


Hi, Everyone. I’m naka naka fresh here, being on third level. Several thoughts are coming to mind. Ninth level in nine months? With all due respect, isn’t it a bit sluggish pace? I understand that we are here not for speeding things up, but since it took me some 2-3 weeks to arrive at level 3, I imagined level 9 might be in the next two/two and a half months, where am I wrong here?
Also, if we are to take a break, is our record history retained so that we may take over at the same level we finished at?
Thanks for feedback.


The first 2 (I think) levels of Wanikani move at an accelerated pace compared to the following ones, but on the normal levels, the fastest you came move up is about 7 days (until some levels beyond the 40s that can theoretically be done in under 4 each). There’s a detailed guide to Wanikani here with a lot of info and advice on managing everything.

What speed you should actually go at is going to depend on you, and levelling speed is determined by how quickly you get all of the kanji to guru level (influenced by how soon you do radical lessons because some kanji are locked behind radicals), but that’s the fastest possible.

Yeah, your position shouldn’t ever be lost. That said, if you are going to step away totally (not recommended if you can at all avoid it, but sometimes life doesn’t cooperate), you will either have all of your past reviews you don’t do pile up, potentially into the thousands, or you can activate “vacation mode” to pause all reviews. The latter is preferable, but even then, it’s going to mess with your memory and make you miss more when you return, which will still mess with SRS and intervals and push your items down, potentially sticking you in place for a bit.

You can, should the need ever arise, also opt to manually reduce your level to any previous one.


To highlight this point, vacation mode sounds like what you want OP.

Settings-> Account-> Scroll down to Vacation Mode


Its More Like 3 levels Per Month At average Speed Of Learning

I started about a month after him and I’m lvl 30, and I AFK’d for two months out of that time. A week per level is about the fast speed, up to lvl 42 or something where you can speed through the levels at twice the speed ending up with 3.5 day levels.

I think you might have meant to say “week” here rather than “month”, right?

Yeah obviously, fixed.

Hi Travis. I recently took a month plus break by just putting it on “vacation mode” until Iwas done with my “crunch time”.Tenugui explained how to do it nicely.

Occasionally, I felt like unwinding with a few reviews that were stacked up. So I popped vacation mode off, did some (using the @10 button to cut it off when I was ready to send that session), and popped “vacation mode” back on. Vacation Mode just freezes that point in time.

If you don’t do any additional lessons, you can get things you’ve done up to now up to Master just during your short “relaxation review sessions”. :blush:

Review before re-starting reviews: I found it helpful to scan the level lists to “refresh my recollection” before coming back off of “vacation mode” and back to my normal routine.


Thanks, very helpful info. Not that i want to cut off Japanese feed thoroughly, but “sometimes life doesn’t cooperate” (love the phrase :smiley: )


I have to admit I wasn’t really looking for people to berate my learning pace. It is all good and well for some people being able to learn god knows how fast, but everyone learns at their own paces and this happens to be mine. if you would rather go off and do 2 levels a week or whatever people claim is possible then be my guest, but it assumes you a) never have other commitments during the day and b) never get a review wrong. if you can do both those things then please by all means make comment on my pace.

A post about wanting to take a break to focus for a month or so on my 40,000 euro degree has ended up being some peoples invitation to flex or shun. hopefully it makes you guys feel good, but I have to admit it doesn’t help me in anyway and just makes me feel shit

thanks for that one


I’m sorry you had to read some of those replies. Don’t let them get you down. If I were you, I’d focus on either doing just reviews or put WK on vacation mode, depending on what you feel you can handle during this busy period; and engage with some very light Japanese content you enjoy (such as shows) for fun, with little pressure, during the free time you still manage to carve for yourself. This way your brain can enjoy some much needed study breaks that still count as really low-effort maintenance. You should concentrate on and be able to enjoy finishing your degree. I wish you luck!


thank you my friend <3 yeah I think I will do just that!


Fellow university student here, with a £49,000+ degree I should be focusing more on than I am currently… :eyes::rofl:

What subject are you doing? Mine is psychology :smiley:

I started WaniKani when I had loads of free time (compared to now). Now, I’m in my final year, I have a dissertation to complete (5,000 words), two essays (totalling 7,000), lectures to attend, studying, data collection to undertake (for my dissertation project), a part-time job throwing 10-hour shifts at me, AND the normal life needs like eating, sleeping and showering.

There’s not enough time and energy. I really feel you :pensive:

These months I’ve been switching vacation mode on and off multiple times simply because I’m always so mentally exhausted and I can’t seem to get into the rhythm I had last year (I used to level-up regularly every 12 days, but now I haven’t levelled up for the past 4 months…).

It’s hell and I feel like a failure, but overworking myself is not the answer :sweat_smile: I’ll probably get back into it after I finish (around end of April,?).

In the meantime, as others have mentioned, I try to do small things like listening to songs or reading a couple of pages of a manga, etc…

Like you also said, I believe that some of those people that speed-run or ‘flex’ about how fast they are, simply have too much time on their hands. No normal adult would be like that :upside_down_face:

Sigh, and yet again I despair that I didn’t find WaniKani when I was younger. I’d be finished by now :weary:


I feel you my friend, I am doing environmental science! in first and second year I had so much time XD now i’m doing my dissertation (10k words) and all my exams I feel like I have dropped off so I definitely think we are in the same boat XD

Hopefully tho we both pass with flying colours and can pick up properly in a nice break year or something after that graduation day!


Well, the worst that can really happen if you really stop doing both your reviews and lessons for a while is that a) some items (but certainly not all) will slip from your memory and b) once you come back you’ll have a huge review wall.

If that’s something you can avoid by still doing reviews (but no more lessons), I’d recommend that. If not, it’s not the end of the world either. You can either scale that huge wall once you come back in small chunks, or you can reset your level to something more comfortable.

The speed at which you go doesn’t terribly matter (as long as it is in line with your learning goals), but consistency is usually helpful for learning. Taking some time off due to important commitments or just feeling overwhelmed is totally fine, though. I stopped doing lessons for a longer period twice already and came back with more energy.


hey, sorry for misunderstanding your intentions, I was super stressed and I was being stupid, thanks for the comparison, ur doing hella well! hopefully once I’m done with uni I can get to a similar kinda pace!