Purpose: If Studying Makes Me Sad, Is It Really Worth It?

Sometimes we wonder if studying is even worth the “decrease in quality of life”, simply because studying makes us sad. Why do we waste our precious lifetime doing things that don’t make us happy? Well, this one’s tough so let’s unpack it together.

The Root Cause: Is it specifically studying? Or something related to it?

Your head could be all filled with studying right now, the people around you are telling you to study, and you yourself know that studying is your top priority now. It seems that everything is about your most dreaded word, ‘studying’, and when you’re sad, it is only natural to think that the most likely cause is due to studying. But is that really true? Are there other things in your life that are affecting you from wanting to put your heart into studying? There could be a deeper root cause. Underlying problems such as an environment that is not conducive enough, or even peer pressure, could be the primary causes of your sadness. Some root causes may not be easily discovered. You can talk to someone, a trusted peer or adult, online or offline, and from there, maybe you can discover your root cause and develop a more targeted solution. You can also record down the times of your sadness and how you feel each time, and see if you can observe a trend about it. It is worth finding out what specifically is making you sad.

Fight & Fight: Could the sadness maybe go away after this period?

Deadlines could be nearing. Or maybe, tomorrow is the day of your examination, and you are not sufficiently prepared. These waves of stress are temporary, and they are waves that will go away. In fact, one could even say that deadlines and examinations are meant to give stress of some sorts, so that a student can be trained to face the harshness of later life. Perhaps understanding the nature of these events can help you with coping, or even help you realise that the sadness caused by these waves will go away. Apart from that, maybe there are other inevitably depressing events that are affecting you, such as family or external matters. Together with the already-stressful academics, these events may just overwhelm you as a whole. As unfortunate and depressing as these events may be, it is important to remember that they, too, will eventually pass, and you can still regain your momentum in studying. Take some time to rest when you are overwhelmed, do whatever that reinvigorates you. And when you feel ready, we can resume from the time we called for a break.

Galore Of Benefits: Let’s be real.

We all know that studying is ‘good for us’. Our parents, our seniors, teachers, friends, everyone on the television, and basically everyone tells us so. As we study, we may begin to question if studying is really worth our time, especially when it is creating so much stress and sadness for us. It is understandable that when we’re overwhelmed and under the weather, we carry negative views about studying. It could seem like we are all toiling for nothing but a piece of paper, recognised by many, and supposedly helps us with our work. But is studying itself really not worth our time? Let’s be real. As we study, we are not just robots forced under the scheme of education, but the very education scheme is guiding us to learn- not just studying. We could be reading about the history textbook, and understanding problems far from us in another country. But this builds up our knowledge, and keeps us in touch with the world. We could be picking up values from the books we read, and this teaches us life values to learn from. The act of learning how to study can also shape us as a person- to teach us discipline, time management etc. Before we dismiss studying as something that is unworthy, perhaps it is worthwhile to consider why people always say studying is ‘good for us’. 

The Final Decision: There’s no right or wrong to it.

There is simply no right or wrong to whether studying is worth it. There are multi-faceted reasons that could be making you suffer from sadness because of studying. It could be a switch in the study environment, how conducive it is, your education setting. Or perhaps, it could be your method of studying that is constantly pushing you to learn in a way that doesn’t suit you- that you dislike. Or maybe, you understand yourself the best and you have thought through things, and you decide to quit school completely and start working. Whichever decision it is, it’s up to you to make an informed one- one that you won’t regret.

If you require academic assistance to make studying less sad and more enjoyable, FamilyTutor offers top-notch home tuition services in Singapore which can cater to your needs. Do not hesitate to hit us up!

Hey, ‘Trailing Thoughts’ is a series that is here to stay. We discuss the big questions in our heads – the journey was never easy but we go step by step!



Zoe is an undergraduate student in Singapore who loves thinking deeply and translating them into writing. She hopes her reflective opinions and sound advice weaved into relevant articles will be useful for you in one way or another!

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