It’s that time of year again, when students everywhere are frantically refreshing their inboxes, stomachs churning in anticipation of exam results, hoping that all of those hours spent locked up in the library with a Tesco meal deal have finally paid off.
But lo and behold, the umpteenth tap of the enter key reveals your worst nightmare, a result that triggers a feeling not unlike the one you felt when your flatmate gave you food poisoning after cooking a questionable lasagna. Exam disappointment is the worst, which is why we’re here to coach you through this crappy time. Here are our top tips to help you cope with those underwhelming results, from cathartic dancing to cake making.
The worst thing you can do is to stew upon those negative feelings, letting them peck away at your spirit until you feel like giving up. Though your emotional turmoil may not exactly be a walk in the park, finding ways of releasing those emotions will help you heal, move on, and revise your academic plans.
If you’re a sporty type, engaging in some form of physical exercise with friends, whether that’s shooting some hoops or choreographing a dance routine to Beyonce’s latest track, will help express your feelings in a healthy way. Or if you prefer art or writing or strumming your acoustic, whatever your niche, using it as a means of catharsis will help you accept your situation.
Speak to Someone You Trust
Have a friend at another uni that’s experiencing a similar dilemma? Talk to them, whether that’s on messenger, through Skype, or traveling to see them. That connection with someone you trust will help alleviate those difficult emotions and give you the means of assessing the bigger picture. Or if your keen to speak to someone outside of the situation, like a family member, reach out and vent with them if you need to, then talk through your options. Getting support during difficult times will give you the honesty and clarity you need to move on.
Practice Self Care
It’s important to take time to relax and unwind, obsessing is never healthy and it won’t make you feel any better. Though they can be important, your grades won’t define your future success. Remember this while you practice some self care, treat yourself to a massage, do some baking with your friends, run yourself a fancy bath or let your significant other cook you up a tasty meal. Looking after yourself and taking small steps like these will release pent up stress.
Learn From Your Mistakes
When you’re ready to recognize where you went wrong and what lead to your disappointing result, put a plan of action into place, it’ll feel empowering and help to inspire you to get over this bump in the road. It could be that you chose a subject that you’re not naturally adept at, so drop the course and move onto to something that better suits your knowledge and skills. Or maybe you procrastinated too much with Netflix documentaries when you were supposed to be studying, so put in place a study schedule and space for your resits or future exams.
Keep Yourself Motivated
No matter what, you shouldn’t let a small disappointment sabotage your confidence or motivation to succeed. There are heaps of ways to keep yourself motivated, from books and fitness classes to reading up on your favourite celebrity moguls and how they made their career. You’ll be surprised at how many people fail before achieving success. Steve Jobs was a university drop out and Oprah got fired from her first reporting job at twenty-three, but that didn’t stop them dominating their industries. Seek out inspiring stories to help you keep your eye on the prize.