It’s that time of year: you’ve done all you can towards your exams and now it’s a waiting game. If you’re feeling anxious and nervous about your results, here are some tips to help you.
Rosie reminds us to give ourselves a pat on the back, no matter what the outcome is – you’ve worked hard, after all:
Whether you get the results you expected or not, that's OK. Try to celebrate what you have achieved, whether that's academically or not - you've survived your exams and you deserve to be proud of that.
Try to celebrate what you have achieved.
Consider your options
There are plenty of routes to take once you have finished this step in your education, as Joel explains:
School isn't the end of the world - you can do so much more, even if you don't pass your exams. Education is everything, but education doesn't stop at school; you can be educated on an apprenticeship and continue learning.
I'm not an 'exams' person, I'm a practical person, and there are lots of people like me who can't stand exams but will go far with their practical skills.
You can do so much more - even if you don't pass your exams.
Contemplating University Clearing?
Going through Clearing to get into a university isn’t always a bad thing, as Zohra explains:
People who didn't get in to their first choice university went through Clearing and were often accepted to better universities than they originally planned.
In some cases, even those who achieved their target grades went through Clearing because they decided they wanted to go to a different university than they had initially applied for.
The grades I got were lower than some people I know but I ended up going to the same university as them.
People who didn't get in to their first choice university went through Clearing and were often accepted to better universities.
Take it slow
Moving onto the next step is a very personal thing, so giving yourself time to breathe could give you a whole new perspective. Tamanna and Rosie both elaborate:
Try not to make decisions in the heat of the moment. Take as much time as you need to work out your next steps, and ask for help if you need it.
It doesn't matter how long it takes you to get to where you want to be, as long as you do not stop and give up.
Take as much time as you need to work out your next steps.
Remember to de-stress
Despite the reassurance, sometimes the stress of the situation can get you down, which is something Roshini can relate to:
To overcome the stress, I made sure to stay connected to my passions and use each stressful situation as a learning experience.
I think having time to yourself and being able to just stop, slow down, gather and reflect is important in learning how to effectively deal with stressful, overwhelming situations and maintaining your sense of self.
I made sure to stay connected to my passions and use each stressful situation as a learning experience.
Don’t compare yourself to others
More advice from our bloggers:
Some people are very academic while others are more creative, and some are a mix of both. Just remember, don’t compare yourself to anyone!
Some of your friends may have achieved better grades than you but, everyone has different strengths, weaknesses, goals and plans, and there is no right or wrong next step. It’s your choice and your life.
Just remember, don’t compare yourself to anyone!
More information and advice
We have tips and advice to help you find the support you need. Take a look at our guides.
Where to get help
However you're feeling, there are people who can help you if you are struggling. Here are some services that can support you.
Exam Results Helpline
Provides careers advice to help young people and their families decide on options following GCSE, A Level and Nationals results days.
Usually available through August. Opening days and hours may vary each year - check website for details.
If you live in Scotland, call 0808 100 8000.
Text SHOUT to 85258.
Shout provides free, 24/7 text support for young people across the UK experiencing a mental health crisis.
All texts are answered by trained volunteers, with support from experienced clinical supervisors.
Texts are free from EE, O2, Vodafone, 3, Virgin Mobile, BT Mobile, GiffGaff, Tesco Mobile and Telecom Plus.
Texts can be anonymous, but if the volunteer believes you are at immediate risk of harm, they may share your details with people who can provide support.
Please note: From the 1 April 2023, texting ‘YM’ to 85258 will no longer be available to use. You can still use Shout as a support service for your mental health.
Shout is a separate and external organisation from YoungMinds.
- Opening times: