How to Say “Sincerely” in Japanese: Formal and Informal Ways

When it comes to expressing sincerity in Japanese, there are various phrases and words that can be used. In this guide, we will explore both formal and informal ways to convey sincerity. Whether you are writing a letter, giving thanks, or expressing heartfelt gratitude, these expressions will help you communicate your sincerity effectively. Let’s dive in!

Formal Expressions of Sincerity

In formal situations, it is important to use polite language to convey your sincerity. Here are some commonly used phrases:

  1. 本当に (hontō ni) – This phrase translates to “truly” or “really” and can be used to emphasize your sincerity. For example, you can say “本当にお礼申し上げます” (Hontō ni orei mōshiagemasu), which means “I truly appreciate it.”
  2. 心から (kokoro kara) – This expression means “from the bottom of one’s heart” and is often used to convey deep sincerity. For instance, “心からお詫び申し上げます” (Kokoro kara owabi mōshiagemasu) means “I sincerely apologize.”
  3. 誠に (makoto ni) – This word signifies “truly” or “sincerely” and is frequently used in formal contexts. For example, “誠にありがとうございます” (Makoto ni arigatō gozaimasu) means “Thank you very much” with a sincere undertone.

Informal Expressions of Sincerity

In less formal settings, such as when conversing with friends or family, you can use slightly less formal expressions to express sincerity. Here are some examples:

  1. 本当に (hontō ni) – As with formal situations, this phrase can be used in informal contexts to convey sincerity. For example, “本当にありがとう” (Hontō ni arigatō) means “Thank you very much” with a sincere tone.
  2. 心から (kokoro kara) – Similar to formal usage, “心から感謝している” (Kokoro kara kansha shite iru) means “I sincerely appreciate it” in an informal setting.
  3. マジで (maji de) – This informal phrase, meaning “seriously” or “for real,” can be used to emphasize sincerity among friends. For instance, “マジで感動したよ” (Maji de kandō shita yo) means “I was seriously moved.”

Tips for Expressing Sincerity in Japanese

Now that you are familiar with formal and informal expressions of sincerity, let’s explore some tips to ensure your sincerity comes across clearly:

1. Use Honorific Language

When expressing sincerity, it is essential to use appropriate honorific language, especially in formal situations. Replace regular verbs with their respectful equivalents and add honorific suffixes to names or titles.

2. Pay Attention to Non-Verbal Cues

In Japanese culture, non-verbal cues play a significant role in conveying sincerity. Maintain respectful body language, such as bowing slightly or nodding, to reinforce the sincerity of your words.

3. Context Matters

Ensure you choose the appropriate level of formality based on the specific context. Consider the relationship between yourself and the recipient, the setting, and the occasion to determine the most suitable expression of sincerity.

4. Be Genuine

Regardless of the language used, sincerity is best expressed when it comes from the heart. Be genuine in your words and convey your emotions sincerely, as authenticity is always appreciated.

“Sincerity is the key to genuine connection in any language. Embrace the opportunity to convey your sincerity in Japanese, and you’ll strengthen your bonds with those around you.”

By following these tips and incorporating the appropriate expressions of sincerity, you can effectively communicate your genuine emotions in Japanese.

Now that you have a collection of phrases to express sincerity formally and informally, go ahead and practice using them in various situations. Remember, practicing sincerely is the first step towards mastering any language!

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Written by Isabelle Georgia

Konnichiwa! I'm Isabelle, a linguistics enthusiast with a crazy love for Japanese language. Besides my obsession with understanding the formal and informal nuances of the language, I'm also passionate about bird watching and star-studying - Galaxy, in Japanese, is 'ginga'. And yes, I'm a 'nekojin' - a cat person. Come join me, we'll learn how to talk about everything from saying "Aha" to discussing apocalypse - all in Japanese! Oops, almost forgot, Brazilian cake flour or 'burajiru keeki komugiko', beets or 'biitsu', they also make my world go 'mawaru'. Ja mata!

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