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Shikii ga Takai (The Threshold is High)

  • Shikii ga Takai


    Today, I will talk about the Japanese phrase “shikii ga takai,” which seems to be misunderstood by more than half of Japanese people.

    “Shikii” means a threshold that is located in an entrance or gate, and you have to cross the shikii to enter the house.

    If you feel the threshold is high (shikii ga takai), it implies that you don’t want to enter the house.

    That is to say, “shikii ga takai” means “it’s difficult to enter the house BECAUSE I made trouble there in the past.”

    However, many Japanese people use this phrase to mean “it’s difficult,” “it’s too high level,” or “it’s out of my league.”

    In such cases, it’s correct to use “ハードルが高い” (the hudedle is high) or “分不相応” (it’s out of my league).

    If you find someone improperly using “shikii ga takai,” please point it out.

    Original sentence