Let’s face it, exams are stressful. Managing the pressure of performing well, organising your revision timetable and looking after your mental wellbeing is a big ask. But it’s important to remember that the third factor, your mental wellbeing, is just as important as your exam performance.
The same way that no one can sit your exams for you, no one can look after your mental wellbeing for you either. So, what can you do to stay on top of your mental health during exam season?
Schedule in regular self care breaks
When completing your revision timetable, also include regular breaks that are for you. These shouldn’t just be breaks where you eat dinner. They should include a self care activity, like journaling about how you are feeling, having a bath, doing some exercise or spending time with friends.
After each exam or large revision session, reward yourself! This could be with your favourite snack, the new pair of trainers you’ve wanted to order or a day out. Rewards will help you to stay on track and is almost like bribing yourself to work towards your rewards.
Communicate with friends and family
After each exam, speak to your friends or family about how you are feeling. What went well? What questions did you get stuck on? What do you need to do differently when preparing for your next exam? Speaking these things through will help you to feel more supported.
Take the help on offer
If your teachers are offering extra revision sessions, breakfast before your exam or drop in support sessions - take them! Your school are there to help you and they want you to do well. Utilise all the support you can get. This is your only chance so don’t worry about what other people think, say “yes” to all the help your school offer you.
Keep doing the things you enjoy
You can’t spend every minute of every day revising. If you have regular hobbies, like sports or classes you attend, don’t stop going to them during your revision periods. Make sure your revision timetable allows enough time for revision but also to attend your classes. They will help you to blow off steam and keep your usual routine. Moving away from your usual schedule can make things feel more stressful!
Good luck. Remember, your exam results don’t define your worth. Do the best you can and you’ve done enough!