Success loves failure

失敗は成功の母。Shippai wa seikō no haha. Failure is the mother of success. — 日本のことわざ

We can do anything we want to do if we stick to it for long enough. — Helen Keller

Failure so soon still a success

I’m only days in and already I’ve failed. By Day 3 I had already fallen short on completing one of the tasks on two different days. Days 4, 5, and 6 were worse. I had dropped to only completing about 2 out the 10 tasks.

That’s a failure-focused itemization. It’s okay, but only as long as I truly realize what’s happening: I have studied Japanese every single day for the last five days! That hasn’t happened in more than four months. Additionally, my vocabulary has increased, my comprehension has made small advancements, and understanding of the culture and grammar have improved.

These incremental improvements didn't exist the day before I started this project. That, my friends, is success. In the end, my ultimate, single success of achieving felicity in Japanese will far outweigh any number of soon-to-be forgotten failures along the way.

Remember: the successful outcome of a singular endeavor outweighs a million failures when it comes to language learning. 

Recognize the failures. Learn from them. Appreciate and validate the true success.

Taking steps, L. Cromwell

Make one million language mistakes as quickly as possible

Expect to make a million mistakes learning a new language. Embrace them. Make them as quickly as possible. Because when you’ve done so, you’ll have achieved success.

My spectacular Japanese failure

七転び八起き。Nana-korobu, ya-oki. Fall down seven times, get up eight. -- 日本のことわざ

A failure establishes only this, that our determination to succeed was not strong enough. -- Bovee

I’m not really learning Japanese in just three months

It’s more like six years and three months. After six years of pretending to study and learn and practice Japanese, I've decided it’s time to take real action, now. Thus, the three month goal to push

Why three months? What’s my motivation?

  1. Because I am best motivated by pressure (pain).
  2. I’m exhausted of fooling around with the language and not having any significant, recent progress (more pain).
  3. I chose not to spend much time on my existing languages—Spanish, Portuguese, and ASL—and now I’m really rusty at those. So I want to brush up on those again (just a little more pain). Thankfully, they’ll come back quickly.
  4. I want to move on and learn a new language, something easier next: I’m hoping it’s German (pleasure).
Aside: I know I'm not the only person who is more motivated by pain than pleasure. That will be my next blog: Transformational Motivation. I jest.

The path to success, L. Cromwell

That's not to say that I haven't learned a thing or two over the years. I can read and write kana, and I read smoothly as long as the text contains yomigana, or furigana.