I’ve been following the website AllJapaneseAllTheTime.com (AJATT for short) for ideas and inspiration on learning Japanese and Korean. I also follow the site author, Khatzumoto, on Twitter as well.
AJATT has been really helpful in keeping me motivated and not giving up. Believe me, I’ve wanted to give up many times. Not because I don’t like Japanese and Korean, but because I feel really embarrassed sometimes, humiliated or frustrated at my lack of progress.
But when I read Khatzumoto’s advice on Twitter, I get inspired to keep trying, explore new methods, etc. I even keep a collection of “ajatt-isms” on my iPhone which I read every once in a while.1 The photo above is from my smartphone.
This post is a collection of (in my humble opinion), the best advice from Khatzumoto on Twitter. I hope it will inspire you to keep learning a foreign language too.
@ajatt: The trick is not to get good at Japanese but to get good at learning Japanese.
@ajatt: Chose anything but the null option. The null option is not an option.
@ajatt: The best way to not forget Japanese is to not not come into contact with it.
@ajatt: Having momentum beats being right. It’s easier to correct course than to get moving. #immersion #SRS
@ajatt: We give up way too easily on ourselves. You don’t suck, your method does. Fix or replace the method. You’re fine.
@ajatt: It is more important to know more Japanese at lunchtime than you did at breakfast…than it is to have a good plan.
@ajatt: Somewhere between “give up completely” and “do it all 100% perfectly” is the level where things actually get done. #immersion
@ajatt: Most dangerous AJATT tip ever: Imitating the way L2 speakers speak your L1 is a good way to improve your L2 pronunciation.
@ajatt: You’re not stupid; you’re not a bad person. The advice just didn’t quite work for you as presented.
@ajatt: First, you kinda get what you give. Then, you give more than you get. Finally, you get more than you give. #input #immersion #thedip #output
@ajatt: Push “play”. Volume up. Good. You’re done. #exposure
@ajatt: You can’t learn a language you’re not exposed to. #exposure #immersion
@ajatt: Whether or not you suck doesn’t matter. All that matters is your direction: are you headed towards or away from Sucksville?
@ajatt: Don’t read a book once carefully. Read it 10 times, 100 times, sloppily. #multipass #reading
@ajatt: You rarely try to eat food without cutting it up to fit that dainty little mouth of yours. So why do you try to do tasks without timeboxing?
@ajatt: Don’t try to improve your technique. Improve your practice (volume, depth, frequency). Your technique will improve on its own.
@ajatt: Don’t work on yourself. Work on your environment. Your environment will work on you. #exposure #immersion
@ajatt: Do NOT get it right the first time, or even the first 9999 times. Get it GOING the first time. Get it right later. #timeboxing
@ajatt: Be patient enough to wait for effects. Be too impatient to wait to start on causes.
@ajatt: You don’t suck. You’re just not ripe yet. Maybe you need to brown bag yourself #immersion
Enjoy and good luck fellow language-learners.
1 Khatzumoto, if you’re reading this, I am not a stalker, but I do enjoy learning language a lot.