I can’t believe! I can’t believe my last post on this blog has been 3 months ago! The moment I returned to my blog after 3-month break, I realized I’d better post something because it is April Fools and I’m welcoming people with “Happy New Year” message. (0_0);;
These past 3 months, however, was very productive for me to improve my Japanese speaking and listening skills. How? Well this is what happened.
After things got little busy around the beginning of January, I felt uncomfortable adding another task on my to-do list. Plus I was confused as to what material to focus on. I was getting stressed out about not being able to follow up with my blog posts.
But then a thought came into my mind.
Although I wasn’t posting on the blog, I still was pushing myself to listen, read, write and speak in Japanese everyday. I was already using a bit of my will power to push myself over my limit. Finally, I decided on my priorities.
My goal is to learn Japanese, not to create the best Japanese learning blog on WordPress.
Upon the realization, I let everything go and let my mind guide me. I successfully got out the pressure of writing a post everyday which cost me mental energy for making me feel guilty about my blog everyday. Quickly, I was able to turn more attention to studying and using Japanese, the thing that actually matters more to my goal.
Then after about three months, while riding Tokyo’s subway with my friend, my thought naturally reached to the blog. When I showed it to her, she made fun of my post saying “Happy new year.” This time, however, I didn’t feel ashamed or guilty. Her joke, I considered it a little nudge telling me to get back. I felt motivated and excited to write about so many things happened since January until now.
Of course, to do something that we haven’t done before, we need pressure. We need to force ourselves to make something into a habit. However, sometimes, we may need to take a step back, think for a moment whether we are spending our time and mental energy on something worthwhile, and adjust our paths appropriately.
Is this the only productive result I got? Of course not! With my friends in Japan, I was having 90% conversations in Japanese. My listening comprehension and speaking skills improved so much that I was surprised at myself from time to time. I felt like I was living my dream already, and I was extremely happy to realize that I can only get better.
Are you having a stressful time learning Japanese? Perhaps it is time for you to let everything go and relax a little bit. Relax. Focus on the fun of using language instead of the agony of memorizing Kanji and grammar everyday! After all, you can only get better!
p.s. The picture is from Waseda University this Monday. Waseda daigaku students were promoting their club activities and inviting first-year students. Mixed in with the crowd and my Waseda friend, I took the picture during their 掲揚 (kouki keiyou, school flag-raising) ceremony. Anyone visited Waseda daigaku like me? 🙂