= Jikoshoukai, onegai shimasu.
= Please introduce yourself.
= Nanoru hodo no mono dewa…
= I’d rather be anonymous….
Hi everyone! お久しぶりです！= Ohisashiburi desu! = It has been a long time!
Today’s guest teacher remains anonymous.
(Actually one of our students took this picture in Hokkaido.)
He will help me to teach you how to introduce yourself in Japanese.
First “self introduction” in Japanese is:
自己紹介 = jiko shoukai
(自己 = jiko = oneself + 紹介 = shoukai= introduction)
When you meet a new group of people, people quite often ask you to do 自己紹介 = jiko shoukai=self-introduction.
You can use the following phrases not just when you meet someone in person but when you fill out your profile on Twitter, Facebook or blog as well.
You first say hello
= Nice to meet you!
*name = 名前 = namae
= (Watashi wa) Maggie desu.
= I’m Maggie.
= Watashi no namae wa Maggie desu.
= My name is Maggie.
= Maggie to iimasu.
= I am Maggie.
If you want people to call you by a certain name, say
= Maggie to yonde kudasai.
= Please call me Maggie.
*国籍 = kokuseki= nationality
= Kanada jin desu.
= I am Canadian.
*Where you are from:
出身=shusshin = where you are originally from
= Nyuuyooku kara kimashita.
= I am from N.Y. City.
= Jakaruta shusshin desu.
= I am from Jakarta.
= Shusshinchi wa Madoriddo desu.
= I am from Madrid. (My hometown is Madrid)
I sometime notice that some people write in their profile (プロフィール= purofiiru) on Twitter or Facebook,
Ex. (country name) から来ました。
= (country name) kara kimashita.
= I am from(country name).
even when they live in that country.
You can only say that when you are outside of your country. Instead of saying you are “from” that country, you should just say your nationality or where you live.
*Where you live:
〜に住んでいます= ~ ni sunde imasu. = I live in ~
= Nyuuyooku ni sunde imasu.
= I live in N.Y. City
Note: As you may notice, we often omit the subject (Ex. 私 = watashi) in natural Japanese.
*Talk about your interests:
趣味 = shumi = one’s interests, hobby
Japanese people often ask what you are interested in.
= Shumi wa nan desuka?
= What are you interested in?
= Shumi wa ryouri desu.
= I like cooking.
The literal meaning of 趣味=shumi is a hobby.
= Shumi wa tsuri desu.
= I like fishing.
= Tsuri ga shumi desu.
= Nihon no anime ga suki desu.
= I like Japanese animation.
= Toku ni “Wanpiisu” ga daisuki desu.
= I especially love “One piece”.
*What you do now:
= Ima, ~ Daigaku de nihongo wo benkyou shiteimasu.
= I am studying Japanese at ~ University.
= Daigakusei desu.
= I am a college student.
= Kaishain desu.
= I am an office worker. (Literally: I am a company person.)
When you describe your job, you can also say,
〜をしています ( =~ wo shiteimasu)
instead of saying
(name of the job)です。( = desu)
= Bengoshi desu.
= I am a lawyer
= Bengoshi wo shiteimasu.
*Talk about Japanese or Japan.
= Zutto dokugaku de nihongo wo benkyou shiteimasu.
= I have been studying Japanese on my own.
If you just came to Japan, you can say
= Mada nihon ni kita bakari desu.
= I just came to Japan.
= Nihon ni kite ikkagetsu ni narimasu.
= It has been one month since I came to Japan.
= Nihon no koto wo motto shiritai desu.
= I would like to learn more about Japan.
= Nihongo ga motto jouzu ni naritaidesu.
= I would like to improve my Japanese.
People love to help you. But you need to ask them.
= Douzo iroiro oshiete kudasai.
= Please teach me many things. (→I would like to learn a lot form you.)
= Toukyou de omoshiroi tokoro ga attara zehi oshiete kudasai.
= If you know any interesting place in Tokyo, please tell me.
= Ima, ~ no figyua wo atsumete imasu. Dokoka yasui mise wo shitte itara oshiete kudasai.
= I am collecting ~’s figures. If you know any cheap shops, please tell me.
= Nihon de tomodachi wo ippai tsukuritai desu. Douzo tomodachi ni natte kudasai.
= I woud like to make a lot of friends in Japan. Please be my friend.
*How to conclude your self introduction.
= Douzo yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
= Thank you in advance (for being my friend, for helping me,…etc)
よろしくお願いします。( = yoroshiku onegai shimasu.) is one of the many most
frequently used Japanese phrases but there is no equivalent phrase in English.
When we ask someone for a favor or are just being polite, we say
よろしくお願いします。( = yoroshiku onegai shimasu.)
for a favor that someone will do for you in the near future.
From the picture above
= Nanoru hodo no mono dewa…
= I’d rather be anonymous….
Sorry. This is not a useful phrase. I just wanted to introduce you an old joke.
This is an cliché when you don’t want to tell people your name jokingly.
It is from Samurai drama.
When a Samurai warrior helps people, people ask their name,
= Semete onamae dake demo (okikase kudasai.)
= Let me at least hear your name…
And the cool Samurai leaves saying
= Nanoru hodo no mono dewa gozaran.
(ござらん( = gozaran) is an old way to say ない ( = nai) / ありません ( = arimasen))
The literal meaning is
I am not worth to tell people my name.
→I’d rather stay anonymous.
マギー先生より = Maggie Sensei yori = From Maggie Sensei
= Nihon no tomodachi wo ippai tsukutte kudasaine.
= I hope you can make a lot of Japanese friends.
Will you be my Patron?
I appreciate your support! サポートありがとう！
Become a Patron!
Self introduction in Japanese
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Going to live in Japan? Better prepare yourself with a Japanese self-introduction, jikoshoukai, as you will inevitably have to go through this painful yet, necessary experience. Yes, in Japan, probably more than once and in various contexts, be it in school, at work or even some parties, you will have to introduce yourself. What should you say? How to condense everything about you in one minute? Do not be afraid, we will introduce step by step the way to give a successful jikoshoukai!
A self-introduction always starts…
… With a salutation and the statement of your name. Whether you prepare to introduce yourself to a curious crowd of classmates or to one person, care to greet first! Depending on the time of the day, you may say ohayou gozaimasu, konnichiha, konbanwa or simply “hajimemashite”: nice to meet you.
You can politely say your name with the desu copula or the verb to say. In a more formal context, such as an interview, you should use a more formal structure. Note that Japanese people are used to give the family name first and then their given name.
Watashi nonamae ha bondo jieemuzu desu.
My name is James bond.
Bondo, jieemuzu desu.
I am James Bond.
Bondo, jieemuzu to iimasu.
My name is James Bond.
Bondo, jieemuzu to moushimasu.
I am James Bond.
… Where are you from?
Being a foreigner in Japan is always stimulating the imagination of Japanese. Whether you are from Spain, Germany or Australia, they will more likely give some exotic origins and be surprised to hear the truth. So the next step of your jikoshoukai is to introduce your country and eventually your city! Tips: if you are American and wish to precise your state, you will have to use shuu (州, しゅう).
Igirisu (no rondon) kara kimashita.
I came from London, England.
Amerika no karifuorunia shuu kara kimashita.
I came from California, in America.
You can also tell where you are from with the word for origins (出身, しゅっしん) or an even easier way would be to give your nationality by adding jin (人, じん) after a country’s name.
Madoriddo shusshin desu.
I am from Madrid.
Pari shusshin desu.
I am from Paris.
Doetsu jin desu.
I am German.
Indoneshia jin desu.
I am Indonesian.
Why do you study Japanese?
Obviously, this is the hot point of your introduction. Not only will Japanese be flattered, but they will be eager to know why you are studying their language. If you are confident enough, you can speak about for how long you have studied Japanese, how, where etc. .
Nihon no bunka ni kyoumi ga aru kara, nihongo wo benkyou shite imasu.
I am interested in the Japanese culture, that is why I study Japanese.
If you are in Japan… Why?
You could have closed earlier. But giving more details is the recipe for a good jikoshoukai, after which you will proudly answer the crowd’s questions. Many reasons might have led you to come to live in Kawagoe or in Sapporo. Whether you are in Japan for a short stay out of pure curiosity or for a longer commitment, you should say…
Nihongo wo benkyou suru tame ni nihon ni kimashita.
I came to Japan to study Japanese.
What do you do… ?
Whether you are a student or working, the “occupation” has an important place in Japanese culture. The Japanese you are introducing yourself to will not be surprised to hear you stating what you are doing. Students can say that they are studying at University or in a school or state that they are (university or not) students.
Daigaku /gakkou de benkyou shite imasu.
(dai) gakusei desu.
If you are working, the following examples should help you prepare your introduction:
Watashi no shigoto ha sensei desu.
I work as a teacher.
Eigo no sensei desu.
I am an English teacher.
Supeingo no sensei wo shite imasu.
I work as a Spanish teacher.
Depending on your level, you can always try to give a more rich jikoshoukai explaining in more details what you are studying or exactly doing at your workplace.
What do you like… ?
This part would be smart in a friendly context. If you are meeting new people, it is always enjoyable to share your passions in Japanese. You can speak about your hobbies and what you like in various ways but the two easiest ones are the expression to like (好き, suki) and the word hobby (趣味, shumi).
Ryouri suki desu.
I like cooking.
Shumi ha supottsu desu.
My hobby is sport.
Shumi ha manga wo yomu koto desu.
My hobby is to read manga.
The final step: yoroshiku!
We have spoken before of the wonders of the Japanese yoroshiku onegaishimasu an expression difficult to translate in other languages. A jikoushokai usually ends with this phrase, meaning in such context, that you look forward to the relationship with your new friends.
Kongo mo douzo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu
I look forward to our relationship from now on.
Douzo yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
I look forward to our relationship.
Now, you are ready for your very first jikoshoukai! Always remember that a self-introduction with a group of friends or with your new boss will be different. You can be casual with people of your age, but should always be formal in a business environment. Be even more prepared to give a strong and polite self-introduction for a job interview!
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Credits (CC BY 4.0) : Kevin Dooley Title: Tokyo Tower POV source: Flickr
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