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Will you pass? Will you get into the course you want? Will everything work out?

Everyone who takes exams feels anxious before the results.

Experiencing a certain amount of worry is completely normal, but if you’re finding yourself constantly thinking about results, we have a few little bits of advice that might help.

Have a think about your results

ThinkingThis may seem like contradictory advice, but hear me out. Take half an hour to sit by yourself, with no distractions, and have a hard think about your results. Take yourself through how you’d feel if you pass, and maybe get into the course you want. Allow yourself time to savour this positive feeling without allowing any negative thoughts to get through.

Then think about what would happen if results don’t go so well. Don’t beat yourself up – no “I should have worked harder”. What’s really the worst that can happen? It might take you a little longer to get to where you want to be in life, but with perseverance you’ll still get there. Universities can still let you in, even if you didn’t fully achieve the grades they asked for. And Clearing is getting bigger each year, with more universities and more courses becoming available.

Do all this is a clean, peaceful environment, while taking deep breaths. Results can seem overwhelming at times, and if you really sit down and take a moment to ponder on it, you’ll see it isn’t the end of the world if they don’t go the way you thought it would.

Make a battle plan

Battle planNow that you’ve given yourself time to think, it’s time to get up and do something productive. If you’re hoping for a uni place and really think you might have to go through clearing, take time to do some research. Clearing choices are now available through UCAS, so have a look at what might be a suitable fit for you, and which universities are offering places. Have a look on the website for each university you might be considering, and make a note of their admissions number and the course code. Keep this handy on results day just in case – but most likely you’ll be throwing it away once you’ve made your grades and got into the university you originally planned to go to.

It can seem like if you don’t go to your first choice university, the future is very uncertain. Once you’ve given yourself some options, the future will look much brighter.

See the memes and gifs that show how TSR users are feeling about results day

Think of the positives

One of the worst things about exam results nerves is the constant beating yourself up about what could have been. Instead of thinking about what you could have done, focus on what did go well. Remember that mock where you got an A, those fantastic revision notes you made, or a breakthrough with a topic you thought you’d never understand? Make a list of them – it’ll be longer than you think! Whenever your thoughts turn sour, focus on what you did well instead.

I didn't think I did hugely well, but it turns out I was better than I thought! To think about all of the worrying I've done over the last few weeks, "I'm going to fail!", "I'll probably do badly in Maths and have to do it again”. I should have just been more confident in my abilities.


Distract yourself

It can be important not to bog yourself down in planning for the worst, so you need to spend some time having fun! What’s that Netflix show you always wanted to watch, or that book you didn’t have time to read over the exam period? What about that friend you haven’t had time to hang out with much, or that exercise regime you wanted to start? Now’s the perfect time to make a start on those personal projects you didn’t have time for in the last school year. Soon you’ll be so involved in season 6 of Game of Thrones you’ll forget to even think about results day.

Enjoy that summer holiday!

How is everybody planning to get through results day?

More on TSR:

Your guide to A-level results day

More information about A-level results day

Help and advice about Clearing and Adjustment