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Top 5 Tips on Mentally Preparing for Results Day

Alisha Kilich (Head of Student Support)

I really hope the summer has been enjoyable after all the hard work that’s gone into A Levels! For some, the anxiety of results day is truly here as we have a week to go. Below are 5 tips to help you get through the next week:

1.         The shoulda, woulda, coulda

Anxious thoughts can transpire in so many different ways. The most common ones are beating yourself up for how things went or catastrophising and predicting a negative future. The best thing you can do is notice these thoughts and counteract them by reflecting on how far you’ve come, and the previous barriers you’ve got through!

Remember negative thoughts are only thoughts, NOT facts. Don’t be hard on yourself – there’s no benefit at all. The NHS have a really good guide to help reduce intrusive thinking.

2.         Feeling in control

Waiting for results means living with uncertainty. And none of us like uncertainty. Planning and confronting worse case fears can help to reduce anxiety. Ask yourself:

A.    What’s the best way for me to receive my results? With someone or alone? What time of day?
B.    Who do I trust to speak about my worries, and to be there for me?
C.    If I don’t get into the university I hoped for, what are my options?
D.    Are you worried about how parents or friends will react? Tell them in advance how you’d like them to handle both best and worst-case scenarios.

3.         Don’t deal with it alone

It’s an overwhelming time, and if you’re feeling down or scared, surround yourself with people who you trust and make you feel good about yourself. Don’t feel guilty about opening up about how you’re really feeling. If you don’t feel you can talk to anyone personally, reach out to your school. Remember, they have so much experience and knowledge! We’re also here for you at LIS. Please do get in touch with us, no matter how big or small the worry is.

4.         What if your worst-case scenario happens?

Hopefully you’ve planned practical steps for plan B, but this doesn’t make it mentally easier. The emotions will be tough, and motivation will be affected, but you need to remember:

A.    Take your time and don’t make any rash decisions. Everyone handles upsetting news differently – and that’s completely okay.
B.    Everyone, at least once a lifetime, has to revert to plan B (or C D E F), speak to those around you about the bad experiences they have faced in the past and how it turned out for them.
C.    Don’t compare yourself to your peers. There may be peers who get your desired outcome. But remember that success and progression look different for everyone. This moment does not define you. There are many different paths to get to the end goal. The new path may be unplanned but may bring many joyful things you couldn’t have imagined.

5. Self-care should always be a priority

As we lead up to results day, you want to ensure you’re looking after yourself. This is so important to help you maintain good energy levels and think clearly. It can help prevent the symptoms of stress and anxiety from increasing to the point they’re unmanageable.

Young Minds has some excellent tips and reflections from students on the importance of self-care.

If you would like any advice or support, please do reach out to our Head of Student Support alisha.kilich@lis.ac.uk

From everyone at LIS, we wish you the best of luck!

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