Results day stress: How to deal with it
Read about our top tips on results day stress and how you can deal with it. We take a look at the essential details about the day itself, as well as how to stay calm in the run-up to it.
For students in Cameroon, results day is just around the corner. Given how strange the world seems right now, it can seem like a particularly stressful time. But don’t worry! We’ve got some top tips and advice for dealing with results day stress.
We explore some of the essential details you need to know about results day and where to get your results. We’ve also outlined some of the steps you can take to minimize stress and stay calm while you wait.
Know the details
Perhaps the best place to start is with the day itself. Often, stress can come from not knowing what’s going to happen. What’s more, due to the coronavirus pandemic, things are a little different from usual.
Results day is stressful, especially if you already suffer from anxiety or other mental health issues. Read our tips to help you cope.
If you’re feeling a bit anxious and worried about results day (or anything else), one of the best things you can do is to practice mindfulness. This practice is all about being present and aware of the current moment. It’s about noticing and acknowledging your thoughts and feelings, making sure they’re not overwhelming you.
You can learn about how to maintain a mindful life in one of our online courses. Things like meditation and breathing techniques can help you be mindful, and in turn, you can reduce stress and gain insight into your own mind.
Below, we’ve outlined the steps for a simple mindfulness exercise you can use:
- Sit somewhere comfortable and peaceful, where you won’t be disturbed.
- Focus on your breathing, taking slow and steady breaths. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth.
- Let your other thoughts and worries slip away as you concentrate on the sensations of breathing and how your body feels.
- If other thoughts do creep in, notice them and then set them to one side. Instead, stay aware of your breathing.
- Pay attention to how your breath feels as it enters your body, and take a moment to be aware of how it leaves your mouth.
You can keep doing this exercise for a minute or two. It will help calm your mind and let you refocus on something worthwhile.
How do you deal with results day stress?
We’ve compiled a list of tips and techniques to help you through this stressful period. Not all will be right for you, so pick and choose the ones you think will work.
1. Talk to people around you
Mental health issues aren’t uncommon among students, so you’ll likely know others who are struggling or teachers who’ve helped students in the past. Your parents or older relatives may have also felt the same sort of emotions waiting for their results. Don’t bottle up your feelings.
2. Plan for the best and worst outcomes
Exams don’t always go to plan and you might not get the grades you need. Make sure you’ve researched what to do on results day and how Clearing works, but don’t dwell on the worst-case scenario. Think of a way to celebrate with friends and family if you do get the results you need.
3. Maintain a normal routine
Try not to let waiting for your exams to take over your summer. Keep yourself as busy as possible to distract yourself from results day stress. If you have hobbies, keep up with them and try to stick with any plans you’ve made, such as holidays and spending time with friends.
4. Make sure you’re in the country for results day (and for a few days after)
Being in a different country for the exam results period can make things complicated. Not only will it make it more difficult to obtain your results and get advice from teachers and advisers, contacting universities if you need to go through Clearing will be considerably harder too.
5. Have someone with you when you collect your results
It’s important to have someone with you on the day to offer reassurance, talk through options if your results aren’t what you wanted, or hopefully celebrate your success with. This could be a parent, sibling, friend or even a teacher.
6. Don’t feel like you have to open your results with friends or share what you got
On results day, there can be a lot of peer pressure to open results at the same time and share what you got with everyone, but that doesn’t mean you have to. You can collect your results and open them at home to avoid this scenario. Or, many schools and colleges will publish results online or offer a text results service.
7. Don’t compete or compare your results with others
A common feature of results day is students sharing their results on social media and this can lead to comparing your results unfavourably. It may help to avoid social media completely for a few days.
If you can’t keep away, just remember to judge your success by your own standards. If you know you worked hard for your grades, but your friend got higher ones, that doesn’t make your achievement any less impressive.
For additional advice on mental health and exam stress, you can contact one of many charities or organisations specialising in the mental health of university students, including: