These are questions I am starting to hear as I talk more about my journey to learn Japanese. What most people don't even know yet is that the Two Year Challenge is only the beginning. I couldn't do translation work after only the Challenge. It's only the first step (or series of steps). The real work starts afterward.
As I mention in the comments of my Challenge page, I have a four/six year program set up in my mind. I haven't articulated it here yet, but I will one day. The Two Year Challenge simply sets me up for the rest of it. Hints on what I am working toward do appear here and there, though. And did I mention that the two years after the Challenge will probably be more difficult?
So why am I putting myself through all this? The answer largely lays here. Please take a moment to visit the link and have a read. This and the others on this site are a major source of motivation for me.
I choose to sweat now in order to avoid bleeding later. I also want to get through this before I turn 40, though that's a little ways away, yet. If it does become a six year plan, though, I'll be kissing the 40 mark.
Oddly enough, I find even more motivation from two people younger than me. The first is known as Astronaut Abby. Abby will become one of the first astronauts to land on Mars. Yes, I believe in her enough to be that certain. Watch her Ted Talk and see why:
The second is even younger, but is equally motivated as Abby. She goes by the call sign Blueberry, and also has a bright future ahead of her. I applaud both of these girls, and have even contributed to the campaigns they mention on their sites.
As I get further into my Japanese studies, I'll create a new page, or change my current Recommended Reading page, to reflect the media that I'm using to expand my Japanese knowledge. But that's several months to a year in the future.
As much motivation I get from what I listed above, another major source is the occasional comment I get, either here or on the WaniKani forums. When I hear that others are looking into their own Challenge, it gives me a major boost with my own. I feel that I can't let them down, not after leading the way a bit. That is what carries me through the hours of studying that I do. And I keep a certain thought in the back of my mind: I can learn anything with enough time and effort. I cannot and will not quit.