If you have been using Anki for a while now, you may have faced your ultimate issue with the program. Reviews get out of control in no time. When you first start off, there is no intimidation, with maybe only a few dozen reviews due a day. But then you slowly start to notice that small friendly number turn into the 100s, and if you miss more than a few days, into the 1000s. Discouraging?
There is a card limit feature on Anki, where you can choose how many cards you want the program to actually make due a day. But c’mon, you know deep down inside that this isn’t the real number.
The temporary solution to this problem is to decrease your addition of new cards. Decreasing new cards and doing only reviews will slowly decrease your reviews due. But there is just one problem: you want to add new cards. Add more cards = increase Japanese level.
I don’t have any magical method to make your reviews go down. You have to do them. But I will tell you something that should ease your worries.
Your reviews will go down as your level of Japanese improves
One of the biggest concerns that relatively new Anki users have is that this overload of reviews will continue forever. If you have 300+ reviews a day and your deck is only 3000 cards, what will happen when your deck is 8,000 cards, or 12,000 cards?
Four factors should put your fears to rest:
1. Your speed of reviewing cards will dramatically increase.
2. The amount of new cards you need to add will drastically decrease.
3. Your rate of correct answers will skyrocket.
4. Your pleasure in doing Anki will rise. It will feel more like reading a strange, fragmented book.
I currently have a fully self-made deck of 2030 kanji and 12,409 sentences. I add maybe around 20 new cards a month. If I do reviews every day, I have about 70-100 reviews, which take about 15 minutes. If I do the reviews once every 3 or 4 days, I usually have around 300-350 cards built up which take around an hour. The numbers have continually decreased. On many of the older cards, hitting the “good” or “easy” button gives me an interval of 5-7 years.
Anki eventually becomes a tool to keep what you have learned in place, and to occasionally learn something new. The great thing about what Anki has done for you is that once you reach a certain level you can learn most things from mere context.
Now get back to your Anki reviews.