Without much thought, you may have offered a non-verbal answer, such as giving a thumbs-up or shaking her head in disapproval. You may have also given a one-word answer favor “Sure” or “Nah.”

There are several ways to agree and also disagree in English. The same is true in Japanese.

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But if you may be rather liberal with your tone and also word an option in English, it’s not so straightforward in Japanese.

When speak Japanese, you need to use the appropriate word in ~ the ideal moment, or rather you’ll danger offending someone.

Choosing the ideal words or plot may show up difficult, specifically in a international language. Yet that’s wherein I’m right here to help!

In this post, you’ll learn exactly how to say yes or no in any type of Japanese-speaking situation, even if it is you’re with essential colleagues, your closest friends or anyone else.

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Agree come Disagree: how to speak Yes and No in Japanese

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Tips and Tricks for Saying No in Japanese

Learning just how to to speak no is a critical skill you require in any language. In Japanese, it have the right to be a bit difficult. There are significant cultural differences to consider when refusing who or something.

The an easy Word because that No: いいえ

When finding out Japanese, you’ll listen the sound “no” in both Hiragana and also Katakana. In Hiragana, it shows up as のand in Katakana as ノ. These personalities represent the sound “no” and shouldn’t be mistaken because that disagreement.

The basic word for “No” in Japanese is いいえ. This word is the many straightforward means to to speak no however is rarely used due to the fact that it regularly comes off as also blunt.

While over there are countless ways to say no in Japanese, speak いいえis a straightforward term that pipeline out any errors in interpretation.

Why You have to Say No Without in reality Saying “No”

While there’s a simple means to speak “No,” it’s additionally a huge “no-no.”

Politeness and also respect are important facets of Japanese culture. Bluntly informing your boss “No” when you can’t make time for a task is viewed as highly disrespectful and also offensive. Instead, it’s much better to to apologize or state that it’d be difficult, rather of saying “No.”

Saying No in official Settings

There may be times once you need to disagree with someone girlfriend respect, like a teacher or manager. Even if you’re on friendly terms through a higher-up, it’s still essential in Japanese society to usage the right words and expressions so nobody feels offended. This is even more important in organization situations, as it helps both parties save challenge to avoid any embarrassment.

Some polite words and also phrases you have the right to use without coming off too strong include:

難しいです。(むずかしい です。) — It’s difficult. 考えておきます。(かんがえて おきます。) — I’ll think around it. 結構です。(けっこう です。) — No, thank you.

These phrases deserve to be combined with other terms come sound an ext formal:

ちょっと難しいです。(ちょっと むずかしい です。) — That’s a little difficult.

If you’re having actually a drink with co-workers, however don’t want a refill, friend can also say:

大丈夫です。(だいじょうぶ です。)— No, thanks.

While this phrases will assist you in former of superiors, it’s additionally important exactly how you speak them. of course, you never want come yell or cause a scene. Speak the phrase and gently rolling off in ~ the end will make the expression sound an ext gentle and also less assertive.

Saying No around Friends and also Family

When approximately friends and also family, you deserve to express yourself much more freely there is no worrying about losing her job. Although いいえmay be too blunt for even the ideal of friends, there are an ext informal terms to use when disagreeing.

There space a couple of simple words and phrases you deserve to use come express disagreement with those who know you best. A couple of terms include:

ううん — No. いや — No! だめ — No good! 違う (ちがう) — That’s wrong. ちょっと… — Well… / That’s a little…

These room informal means to speak no and also shouldn’t be offered in polite company.

Utilizing Apologies to decrease Offers and also Invitations

There might come a time once you’re invite to an event but can’t make it since you have actually other plans. Instead of saying “No” and also embarrassing your friend, you can apologize.

One straightforward phrase that can twin as “No” and “I’m Sorry” is すみません (I’m sorry). Girlfriend can incorporate すみません v ちょっと because that an even softer apology:

すみませんが、ちょっと… — I’m sorry, but that’s a little…

Refusing by Vaguely saying No

Another inoffensive means to refuse an offer is to repeat the key subject and add ちょっと:

仮面ライダーを見ませんか? (かめんらいだーを みませんか?) — carry out you want to clock Kamen Rider? 仮面ライダーはちょっと… (かめんらいだーは ちょっと…) — Kamen Rider? Well…

The way you speak ちょっとis an important here. You’ll have to trail turn off at the finish of the word ちょっとso it doesn’t sound also harsh. This will let the listener recognize you’re refusing while likewise saving them part embarrassment.

Using the Negative form of a Verb to Say No

Another means to say no without speak “No” is by using the negative form of a verb.

テレビを見ますか? (てれびを みますか?) — perform you clock TV? テレビを見ません。(てれびを みません。) — I carry out not watch TV.

This means of speak no isn’t for everyone because it’s more than memorizing a simple phrase. Conjugating verbs right into their negative forms will certainly take some practice since there are a selection of rule to consider.

Speaking v Actions come Say No

In casual settings, a gesture may be all you must say no. Crossing your arms right into an “X” is one example.

Often provided in the workplace, suck or hissing through the teeth or rubbing the earlier of the neck usually means no. Also a long pause and also a sigh can mean no. These aren’t meant to be rude gestures, however rather, room non-verbal means of disagreeing.

Tips and also Tricks because that Saying yes in Japanese

Similar to speak no in Japanese, over there are plenty of ways come say yes. Correctly is much less tricky than no, due to the fact that you run less risk that offending someone. However, there are still a few phrases that need to be supplied in casual, rather than formal, settings.

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