Kanji aren’t the nightmare people that imagine. True, there are lots. But then every language has a lot of words. So think of kanji as words.
And when you are familiar with them, you can instantly grasp the essence of a block of text.
I like the approach of James Heisig. Additionally, I developed my own kanji dictionary. I created a 5-digit code for each kanji. The first 3 digits refer to the direction of the first few strokes, and the final 2 give the total number of strokes.
I believe that the benefits of kanji may outnumber their disadvantages.