Untranslatable Words – Jìn qû


Jìn qû (进取, jin choo) is a Mandarin adjective used to describe someone or something proactive, ambitious, and constantly progressing. It suggests taking initiative to forge ahead even if this might seem daunting or scary at first.

I like this word because it seems to capture the idea that progress and change requires effort and a little bit of bravery, and it acknowledges the fact that situations can always get better, no matter how comfortable or ‘good enough’ they are in their current state.

If things remain stagnant and get too comfortable, life would just be boring. Of course it’s a wonderful feeling to feel as though you have your life together, but the idea of progress and change and the unexpected are, to me, much more exciting.

Something that recently gave me peace of mind is that it does not always matter who or where you are, but what matters more is who you are becoming, and the places you could go if you unlock your full potential.


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