“I want to learn Japanese, but don’t have the time to study.”
Have you ever said this to yourself? Have you thought about studying Japanese but then it’s suddenly 10pm and you did nothing?
Yeah, we’ve all been there. Sometimes it’s hard to put aside the time to study. Especially everyday! You have real life stuff getting in the way like that one TV show, or school, or work. At least… that’s what you tell yourself.
If you really, really, really want to learn Japanese then here are some suggestions for fitting it into your busy life.
Find Little Bits of Time
You don’t need to sit down for an hour every day at a desk and study frantically. Then it becomes a chore, and chores are no fun and easy to put off.
The best thing to do is find a little bit of time everyday to practice.
What about when you’re cooking? There’s always that 15-20+ minutes when you’re waiting for something to cook. A great time to sneak some studying in.
Just 20 minutes before bed/when you wake up.
In class/at work when you have a few minutes, just makes notes, try and write some sentences, look up a few words.
Keep Track of How Much Time You Study
A great tip for sitting down and sticking to a short study session is to time yourself. A smart phone or an online program like Toggl is perfect for things like this!
If you’d rather study for a longer time then this is a great way to make you stick to it without getting distracted!
Stop Putting it Off
I mentioned this in Achieving Japanese Goals but don’t put off to tomorrow what you can do today.
Telling yourself “I’ll do it tomorrow” won’t help you in the long run, because you probably will keep putting it off! (I have done this many times myself…)
If you find yourself with time but are thinking “I’ll do it tomorrow” you need to stop yourself, and just do it!
You’ll often regret it if you don’t. Even 10 minutes is better than nothing!
Having at least 1 hour a week with a teacher is a great way to keep studying. It’s a set schedule that someone else will hold you accountable to! So you can’t miss it!
A great way to get a teacher is to search local for one to one, or find a teacher on skype. italki.com is a great website for finding teachers through skype.
Great Apps for Short Study Sessions
I have an Android so I mostly use android apps. I made some suggestions of my Top 10 Japanese Apps for Android here. But here are some of my favorite:
- Memrise app whether on computer or your phone is great tool for quick study and reviewing. Especially kana, vocab, and kanji.
- Kanji Box for iOS
- Japanese Kanji Study for Android
- Tae Kim’s Learning Japanese – Grammar study on the go.
- NHK Easy Japanese News – Reading practice on the go.
- Learning Japanese by sagetsang
- Hello Talk – Talk to Natives
Sometimes you’re just not motivated enough to study. It’s time TO GET MOTIVATED!
Videos like this by Benny Lewis is a fantastic way to motive yourself!