When it comes to learning Japanese, pride is the enemy. The more pride you have the slower your progress learning Japanese will be. The main reason for this is that pride limits your ability to learn new Japanese material and ask lots of questions. It usually gets worse the higher your level of Japanese goes. The higher someone’s level gets the more expectations the student puts on their Japanese and become embarrassed if they don’t know something. There are two simple steps you can take to keep yourself asking lots of questions and constantly learning.
Think of yourself as a beginner
If you always think of yourself as a beginner then it is easy to ask lots of questions. You also won’t worry about making mistakes (something that is a natural part of learning Japanese). If people feel you are eager to learn they will also be more likely to correct your errors, helping you improve even quicker.
Don’t give yourself any expectations
The second step is to keep expectations out of your language learning, especially expectations that you should know certain words. I have been studying Japanese for quite a few years and still come across new “basic” words all the time. Realising it’s okay to not know these words makes it easy for me to ask what they mean and how to use them.
The Best Language Learners
The best Japanese speakers I know work really hard to learn Japanese, and they love to study and to practice speaking. However, they also consider themselves novices in the language. While they have the confidence to speak, they are not afraid to ask questions and learn something new. In fact, they love finding new words and phrases they didn’t know. Don’t let your pride slow down your progress.