Studying is hard; there is no way to sugar coat that fact. It is a task that every student seems to detest, despite it being the only necessary task that comes along with the title of being a student. It pushes yourself to be uncomfortable as you are constantly thrown new information that will seldom make sense immediately. We are all familiar with the embarrassment of not knowing the answer to a question when in front of the entire classroom, or receiving a test result back and realising that we did not know as much as we thought we did.
It is made even harder in high school, where there are a range of topics you are forced to learn that you have little to no interest in. It is undisputed that some of the knowledge acquired in school classrooms will not serve you at all for the rest of your life. School kids love to ask their teachers when they will use the famous Pythagoras Theorem again in the real world and the answer for most is likely to be never.
Study as a skill
Regardless of all this, the act of studying remains important. It is a skill that takes a whole heap of energy and discipline to do, and even more to perfect. It is the skill that only necessary skill that should be learnt from your journey through high school because, unlike Pythagoras’s Theorem, it will serve you incredibly well in life.
But what do we really know about the skill that is studying. I used to ask myself all the time when I would sit down to do some work, “what exactly am I doing here?”. If you are playing a sport, say basketball, and you are practicing your jump shot, you are well aware that in doing this, you will be able to make more shots in a game. If you were practicing a musical instrument so you can learn a tune for a performance, or improving your dexterity so you can move on to more difficult songs, the goal is crystal clear. If you were to ask yourself when you sit down, “why am I studying?”, what would you say?
The answer is not as obvious as in the examples I have given. It will also differ from person to person. Some students know very clearly that they wish to go to university and become a doctor, lawyer or engineer by the end. But a lot of students do not know. These days there are so many things out there that by the time high school students are picking their subjects at the age of 15 or 16, they have absolutely no clue where they might end up. Even the ones that were so confident before will be wrong since so much can change before you even reach your destination.
Learn to learn
This all may sound discouraging but I am here to give you some reasons to study. Like we said, it is a skill that we have to learn, polish and perfect. What can you not do, if you are able to attain whatever knowledge, whenever you please? Even if you were to not have the answer immediately, there will be nothing stopping from using your skill to find it. No doors will remain locked to you if you are able to study and learn the necessary facts, master the necessary skills and apply them wherever you wish. It is the golden ticket to the destination that you desire, when you find out exactly what that destination is.
The information and skills you are studying now is never meant to be used continuously for life. It is not to calculate the angles and distances in a circle. It is not to recite Shakespeare’s greatest works. It is not to memorise the light and dark cycles of photosynthesis or the layers of the Earth’s crust. They are implemented to teach you how to learn, how to use logical reasoning, how to be creative and emotional, how to be curious and of course, how to memorise.
So if you ever need a reason to study, to learn, just remember that you are practicing the only skill that you will need for the rest of your life. The ability to find the answer to any question, solve any problem, and overcome any obstacle is what you are practicing. You will never regret having more knowledge, nor the abiltiy to attain it at will.