“In sooth I know not why I am so sad.” (Merchant of Venice I.i.1) Sadness is a natural part of life, but it can also be very frustrating to feel sorrow and not know why. This quiz can help guide you towards why you might be feeling sad. Of course, there are as many reasons to feel sad as there are stars in the sky, so this quiz is not exhaustive. If you are feeling sad all the time and can’t figure out why you may want to seek help or check out our “Are you depressed?” quiz.
1. Does anything make you feel better?
A. Not reading the news
B. Getting a text from a friend
C. Communicating with my partner
D. Taking time to do something I really love doing
2. If you imagined a world where you felt happy what is the most important feature of that world?
A. It’s run by people who hold my ideal
B. I am madly in love with my partner, and they are madly in love with me
C. I’m surrounded by loved ones.
D. I have a great career where I am appreciated
3. Do you find yourself talking about one thing in particular?
A. Yes, one person who I care about a lot
B. The state of the world
C. To myself, you mean? Because there is no one around to talk to
D. What’s wrong with me/ why didn’t I deserve to get that promotion?
4. Do your friends think they know why you are sad?
A. It doesn’t seem like they care
B. Yeah, but they say everyone has to deal with that right now
C. They think I deserve a better partner
D. They think I need to move on and find bigger and better things
5. What triggers you to cry or feel sad right now?
A. Fights with my partner, or when we just can’t communicate, when they hurt me
B. Reading news and hearing about everything that is happening
C. When I am at my job
D. I think I have no one who cares about me
6. Has anything major happened in your life?
A. I didn’t get a job/promotion/project I wanted
B. Not my life in particular, but the world is a stressful place
C. Nothing really major
D. I’m having a lot of romance trouble
7. Have you been talking to your friends?
A. No, I’m hoping someone might reach out
B. Yes, but they can’t help, they don’t control how my boss treats me
C. Yes, they try to give me advice, but they only know so much
D. Some, but they are dealing with the same stuff I think
8. How long have you felt this way?
A. Since I had a big fight with my partner
B. Since I got/lost this job
C. For a while, since I last really connected to someone
D. Off and on; since I started really thinking about what’s going on
9. Does anything come to mind when you get sad?
B. My partner/this person I really like
C. My friends and how long it’s been since I’ve seen them
D. My dumb boss
10. What other feelings can you identify in your sadness?