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Survivorship Bias while Learning Japanese — 6 Comments

  1. Adam,

    Great article, this in particular stuck out to me:
    “I succeeded with hard work and dedication. If you aren’t succeeding using the same methods I used to succeed, you must not be working hard enough”

    As I’m now a little further in my Japansese Journey (as well as my Jalup journey) and am a little more confident, I think this might have crept in in my attitude towards others. It’s good to have a humbling reminder to ensure we act kindly towards other learners.

  2. The bright side of learning something like a language is that if you crash and burn you are not dead, so you can try again. As long as you learn from your mistakes and fail in a different way each time, you are still making progress. If nothing else you are learning what doesn’t work well for you. A lot of things you learn from failing can apply to learning many different skills, so even if you give up on something what you learn isn’t wasted. It can still apply when you try to learn something else.

  3. When you read postapocalyptic YA sci-fi (like the 5th Wave or Pure) do you think, “yeah, that’s me! I’ll survive, I’ll the hero” or “Oh, dear! I’m going to die along with almost everyone else.”
    Apparently, you’re supposed to believe without question that you’ll survive; that’s the appeal of the genre.
    I have no idea how this translates into learning Japanese, but maybe if you like the genre you can put yourself in the same mindset as you have when reading YA sci-fi… or something.

  4. What a change in tone this article has. I understand wanting to set realistic expectations but this can basically be summed up as a demotivational article. I don’t understand why you would write this for people struggling with Japanese. Even if the war is lost it is far better to stay the course all the way to the bitter end than to instill the idea that for many it is hopeless. I don’t know Adam, I’m not a fan of this one.

    A much better article is Everyone is a Japanese Hero in the Making. People should go read that instead.

    • I’m sorry it came off that way. My intention was the opposite.

      It was meant to prevent people from comparing themselves to the “success stories” and to not feel down on yourself when you don’t think you are doing as well as someone else who is in the spotlight.

      Most people struggle fiercely all the way to reach victory in Japanese (including myself). Know that this is normal, and that you aren’t doing something wrong if your story hasn’t been the same as Mr. Success… At least that was what I was trying to say :)

      • In that light it makes sense.

        I’m pretty new. I’m not aware of many other Japanese learner blogs so maybe that skews my perspective on what others are dealing with when tackling this language. I haven’t felt the need to go anywhere else for information, you’ve got it all covered here haha. In the end you’re right. We are all different and what works for one may not work for others and it is important to not lose sight of that. Cheers ^^

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