Usually my chavrusa and I learn Gemara and rashi. Given the length of the Gemara in terms of words per page, and the length of the peirush attributed to Rashi, this method seems daunting for Daf Yomi. Do you have another recommendation to make learning the daily Daf for kerisus less daunting?
Menachem Weiman, St. Louis, USA
When a Daf is very lengthy with a lot of content, that usually indicates that the "difficulty level" of the Daf is not high, for otherwise the Daf would be short and there would be a lot of Rashi and Tosfos. So, in that sense, it is not as daunting as it seems.
Moreover, it is only the first and last Perakim that seem so packed. The middle Perakim are not as packed.
One way to make it less daunting is by lowering your energy output in one area (such as Havanah, comprehension) and increasing your energy output in another area (like Keri'ah, reading and translating). This does not mean that you lower your Havanah, but rather that you rely on an external aid for your Havanah, such as our Daf Outlines or Review Answers, or by listening to an audio Shi'ur of the Daf.
Another approach is to simply accept it as daunting and take on the challenge. Torah she'Ba'al Peh was not meant to be easy (see Midrash Tanchuma, Parshas Noach). Practically speaking, you could alter your Dafyomi schedule for a few weeks in the following manner: Since the Dapim in the next Masechta, Me'ilah, are very short, you could learn, for example, 15 days in Kerisus as Amud Yomi, and then when you get to Me'ilah, on 15 days learn two Dapim instead of one.