Grammar Info
N4 Lesson 4: 5/18

う・よう + と思(おも)う
I think I will, I think I shall, Going to, Gonna (volitional + と思う)

Verb[おう] + と思う(1)

(1) と思っている
Verb[おう] + と思います(1)

(1) 思っています
Register Standard
使用域 一般
The combination of a verb with the auxiliary verb , or よう, followed by the う-Verb 思(おも)う gives us the common expression ようと思(おも)う. This expression is often translated as 'I think I will (A)', or 'I shall (A)'. It is also close to the casual expression 'I'm gonna (A)'.
Remembering that and よう can have one of three possible meanings in Japanese (as discussed in the よう grammar point), ようと思(おも)う is usually only used to express one of those three. That 'one' is as follows:
意志(いし) - Expresses intentions (has a similar meaning to ~するつもりだ
  • このゲームもうあきらめようと思(おも)う
    I think I will give up on this game already. (I have arrived at the conclusion that I will give it up)
  • 私(わたし)明日(あした)から電車(でんしゃ)通(かよ)おうと思(おも)う
    I think I shall commute by train from tomorrow. (I have arrived at the conclusion that I will do it)
  • 来月(らいげつ)、バイク買(か)おうと思(おも)う
    I think I will buy a bike next month. (I have arrived at the conclusion that I will buy one)
This expression is also often used with 思(おも)っている. In these cases, it highlights that the intention of the speaker is something that they regularly think, or have been thinking about for some time.
  • 今晩(こんばん)レストラン美味(おい)しもの食(た)べようと思(おも)っているけど、ナオミ来(く)る
    I am thinking of eating something delicious at a restaurant tonight, but do you want to come too, Naomi?
思(おも)っている may also be used when describing the intentions of another person, as discussed in our lesson about と思(おも)う.
  • タケル、お前(まえ)絶対(ぜったい)サチコ別(わか)れようと思(おも)ているでしょう
    Takeru, you are definitely thinking of breaking up with Sachiko, aren't you?
Let's be careful to remember the difference between the auxiliary verbs よう, and ようだ. They are different constructions that have different meanings, and behave in unique ways grammatically.
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I think I will study tomorrow.
I think I will buy a house next year.
I think I will eat candy after returning home.
Genki II 2nd Edition
Page 79
[DBJG] A Dictionary of Basic Japanese Grammar
Page 569
Tae Kim's Japanese Grammar Guide
Page 169
Minna no Nihongo II Main Textbook (beginner)
Chapter 31 Page 44
Minna no Nihongo English Translation and Grammatical Notes
Chapter 31 Page 38