I need motivation to keep up

Well, 2 days have passed since I put Wani in vacation mode. I feel bad that I don’t have much motivation to keep up doing reviewing cause somehow it’s burdensome every day with hundreds of reviews. I decide to take a break but I’m afraid I can’t even comeback :sad: What should I do now? I’m in lifetime subscription by the way so actually, there’s no urge for me to complete wanikani in any period of time.

edit: somewhere I read a wise saying “discipline is more important than motivation”. So, the story goes to: "How can I maintain/build my discipline?


Hmm, well firstly I would recommend taking off vacation mode. Stop doing lessons and just do the reviews which will decrease in number as you clear out your apprentice items. It’ll be a chore, but it’ll save you from hitting a wall when you get back and realize you have like 100 items in your review queue that you don’t remember.

If you don’t have the time now, then wait 'till the review count is lower, but dedicate time to something you enjoy that uses japanese. Rewatch a favorite anime movie with jp subtitles, read something easy, look up some proverbs. Whatever you want.

For now, its important that you don’t stop. The longer you stop for, the harder it will be to come back. Show some discipline and accept that you’ll have to do reviews now to save yourself from regret later.


It seems like some people reset back a number of levels to help with this problem. There is a thread devoted to that, I think, to help you decide if it is the right thing. That probably removes some reviews. Then, you can proceed again at a slower pace this time.

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I also lost motivation in past and it took me around 3-4 years to come back seriously.

The only thing I did was I went back to the reason I started learning Japanese in the first place (in my case it was reading WN/LN/VN but mostly the latter). I picked up a short one, had a dictionary open in one tab and tried reading. It took me a long time and lots of patience but when I was able to finish it in the end, I got the confidence boost I needed and it made me realize that I seriously want to learn Japanese again and read without the help of dictionary.

What I meant to say was going back to your roots (here, the reason for picking up Japanese) and also practice using it (which in my case coincided with the first point). The first time I was using Wanikani, I was just learning stuff day by day but was burning out since I didn’t use it anywhere. This time, alongside learning I pick up stuff to read frequently. The joy of recognizing words and understanding the meaning of stuff w/o any additional help reinforces my conviction.


Another thing that happens after a while, if you do just reviews, is that you get so few reviews per day, you’ll be aching to do more lessons because you don’t want to wait 13 hours for your next review.


Right, and this in and of itself is a good gauge for when its time to come back. If you’re forcing yourself to put in work, you’ll eventually find yourself thinking of it as less of a chore. Once you are ready to get back on the horse its as simple as doing some lessons.


For staying motivated to keep-up with WK I always make sure to keep-up for staying motivated.

Meaning make sure to keep your review queue empty. :smiley:


This is important. Do not stop.

If setting a review goal feels too difficult for you, set a time goal. You don’t have to do 100 reviews everyday, but you can do 15 minutes of reviews. Or 10 minutes or 30 minutes, whatever suits you. That adds up fast. Doing 15 minutes of reviews for a week means doing almost 2 hours in a week! Your review queue will melt fast.

Good luck! :slight_smile:


First, stop the urge to try to finish all lessons and all reviews at once.

Second, install WaniKani Real Number. My trick is, instead of trying to make it zero, make it multiples of 25; make it a beautiful number.

Lastly, you might plan 2 weeks per level, instead of 1.

Caution, though. Keep Apprentice and Leeches low. Also, this time, vocabulary lessons are a priority, not Kanji.


To add to what’s already been said, if some of the items that keep coming back are stubborn items from 10 levels or so earlier, try to take the time to make up your own mnemonic so that they stick, and to make sure that item remains where it belongs, the crematorium.

I still have apprentice items from level 20-30, I’m 40 ._.

Edit: Just to add some context: the only time doing reviews feels like a chore is when many of the queue items are ones I’ve seen over 100 times and still get wrong.


Thank you guys for all the kind help and experience. I share my current situation after stop my vacation mode and do some reviews.

I should be ashamed of myself. I know :cold_sweat:

edit: somewhere I read a wise saying “discipline is more important than motivation”. So, the story goes to: "How can I maintain/build my discipline?


You are being way too hard on yourself. I’m guessing many (most?) people on WK have worked through a review backlog of 300+ more than once. I didn’t put myself on vacation mode over the holidays and came back to almost 1000 reviews. Just do batches of 10 throughout the day. You don’t have to clear your review log in one day. You could aim to get your review log to the high 200s today, maybe the high 100s tomorrow and work it down over the next week or two. Start doing 3 lesson a day and those will catch up, too. You’re fine.

It’s just a learning app - it serves you, not the other way around.



First off, clear all vocabulary Lessons first. The fix script for this is Wanikani Reorder Ultimate [old version, not working]. However, you might skip Kanji lessons for now. This will also prevent leveling up. Well, planning something like 2 weeks to level up, OK.

Second, Reviews: 350 – clear all Apprentice, ignoring all Guru count / Total Review Count. The fix script for this is WaniKani SRS Reorder Button (or [Userscript] WaniKani Review Asc/Desc SRS Order if you prefer, but I like the former more.) Yeah, you don’t have to care if your Review Count is eventually sky high, as long as Apprentice is low.

Third, sky-high Review Count, to decrease to 300 per day as usual, I use “Reorder Ultimate” to do lower levels first.


I wouldn’t suggest to do the lessons first. He has a bunch of leeches to take care of + reviews that will probably originate new leeches. The priority should be the reviews. Doing new lessons every day might seem inoffensive, but it’s actually a good reset once in a while. The more reviews one has, the harder it is to fix the problem. Reviews definitely first. While he’s at it, he should take advantage of the training leeches script to fix whatever words he’s not memorizing. Only then the new lessons should start. It’s important to remember that this whole situation started because it was hard to keep up with all the high intensity of 7 day levels.

Also, he’s asking for discipline. Discipline on WK means coming here everyday to do reviews mainly. That’s the focus. Only then will he be able to ascend and use its full abilities to handle the constant new flow of knowledge (lessons).


Maintaining discipline - I’m a newbie but also deal with a lot of behavioral psychology in other areas :3

You are very correct in that motivation is fleeting (it’s also tied to your blood sugar - willpower is actively draining to your brain, like exertion, which is why it’s so easy to fall off the wagon, especially when stressed or when you’ve been focusing on something for a long time)

  1. Tie new habits to current existing habits. For example “Every time I sit down at my computer I complete at least five reviews.” “After dinner I will work on WaniKani.” Or if you’re agenda/calendar focused, block out time each day to work on your reviews.
  2. Don’t get overwhelmed! Little small bits at a time will help you retain better anyhow. You don’t have to clear your queue in a day.
  3. Track what you’ve accomplished and celebrate that instead of looking at what you still need to do. Maybe tracking how many you get through in a day and setting a reward for 20 or 50 or 100. Make sure it’s rewards that will net positive instead of things that are detrimental, so not “I will do 200 reviews and then take a break” :slight_smile:

Thank you. The srs reoder script is great! I wonder what do the colors indicate? I see the red, violet and blue ones. Which one indicates apprentice items?

Thank you, this is great advice. I’ve been doing exactly you said in 1. every time I sit in the computer in the morning I would do Wanikani first. I think I’m hard on myself so I would try to sit back, relax and devide those reviews in to a bunch of 10. As for the reward, yeah I kind of feel hard to have “net positive”, how can I achieve that?

No place for shame, here - you’re learning another language by self-study, so give yourself the credit you deserve for having the gumption to improve your knowledge.

As @animuse wrote, I found I was much better able to focus by scheduling time at particular intervals of the day to do WK.
I can’t find it at the mo, but I’m sure I read a Tofugu article about making study a ritual (a ‘get-to-do’ rather than a ‘have-to-do’) - so set aside some time for you, a soothing beverage, and WK, then bask in the presence of the great Crabigator.

We’re all pulling for you!


Found this one instead, hope it helps.

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Which Leech related script is that? I could use that… I probably have a lot… Most of the 52 Apprentice items I have right now are probably leeches.

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