The long, hot summer that awaits you after finishing your exams will forever be tainted by the dreaded results day. Here are five top tips for staying calm and relaxing without the worry about what that heavy brown envelope holds.
Tip 1 – Social interaction
Although it may seem like lying in bed all day is desirable after months of hard work and stress about exams, spending time with those you love is not only good for distracting yourself about results day, but it maintains your social skills and allows you to have fun at the same time. Whether it’s games night with your family, or a sleepover with your friends, having that support from the people around you will undoubtedly help tame the anxiety that plays on your mind.
Tip 2 – Alone time
Whilst social interaction is important, having the chance to spend time in your own company without the pressure of revising is like a big sigh of relief. Binge-watching your favourite TV shows, reading books, exercising and listening to music- are all solo activities you can do to finally let your mind take a deep breath and relax. However, make sure you still have that balance between social time and personal time, otherwise, you may find yourself dwelling on your exams and overthinking the worst outcome of your results.
Tip 3 – Hobbies
Revising for exams is so time-consuming that there is none left for doing what you enjoy. Without the burden of revision on your hands, take the time out to do your hobbies. This could include sports, playing musical instruments, painting, cooking, or even just playing with the dog in the back garden. Enjoying yourself as much as possible will help you stay in the present, rather than dwelling on the past or worrying about the future.
Tip 4 – Out and about
The post-exam energy crash is known to keep you in the confines of your bedroom and phone screen. Making an effort to go outside is not only physically healthy but good for your mental state too. Switching off your phone, taking a trip to the beach, going on bike rides and embracing the outdoors are great ways to make use of the summer. You could even volunteer for a local charity, or take up some extra hours if you have a part-time job. Having the balance between outdoor activity and personal downtime is key to keeping a clear head and staying busy, but having that free time to just sit and do nothing.
Tip 5 – Positive affirmations
Make a conscious effort to be nice to yourself. This may involve self-care days with face masks and smelly shampoos, but also taking a deep breath and comforting yourself is a great way to reduce anxiety. It may sound cliche, but remind yourself that no matter what those certificates say, everything will turn out alright. Exam results do not define you as a person and do not determine your success. On results day in 2016, Jeremy Clarkson tweeted:
‘If your A-level results are disappointing, don’t worry. I got a C and two Us, and I’m currently on a superyacht in the Med.’
Take the time this summer to enjoy yourself, and don’t feel pressured to excel in academic achievements. If you are feeling overwhelmed, you can talk to a trusted adult, text ‘SHOUT’ to 85258 or visit Childline.