Why your exam results are for you and no-one else
Do you feel pressure from other people to do well in your exams?
Maybe your parents are incredibly anxious about whether you're studying enough.
Maybe the teachers at school have piled on the pressure.
Is there some outside influence heaping on the stress and making you feel like you have to get good grades for their sake, almost more so than for yourself?
Do you suffer from the good girl mentality where you think, “I don't want to let anyone down and I want to do my best.”
Well, I want to tell you one thing today and keep it really simple: your exam results are for you and no-one else.
Why your exam results are for you
The exams you're studying for right now, or the ones you've just taken, are going to be an indicator to the world of what you're capable of.
The grades you get will give other people an indication of your intelligence, talents, abilities and character. They are a measurement of you.
When you write those grades down on an application form for a job, or on your UCAS form for university, you will be judged by those grades. Those judges will be people who have never met you before.
So, you want those people to see grades that truly reflect who you are.
Why your exam results aren't for someone else
In many ways it's right that your parents care deeply about what grades you get and if you're putting your all into doing your best. Loving parents want their children to do their best and be their best. But, they should never let you feel that you're doing this for them and not yourself.
The same goes for your school. If you feel like you've got to get good grades so you don't let your teachers or your school down, then they're giving you the wrong message. They should be on your side, bigging-up your chances for your most successful life.
Showing your potential to achieve your best life
This is why I'm here, blogging away. I'm here to inspire and assist you on your way to your best life. And, my hope is that I can reach more people through my blog than I could by being back in the classroom.
Your best life is all about making the most of your potential. We're all born with the potential to do so much, to reach many people, to change the world in our own special way.
Your exam results are one of the places where you start unlocking this potential.
The knowledge that you gain by all the hours of studying will be forgotten in years to come. Seventeen years on I can hardly remember a single detail of my chemistry A-Level. I haven't used that knowledge and it's been replaced in my mind by information that's now more useful to me.
However, pushing myself really hard to get an A in my Chemistry A-Level gave me self-knowledge that I will never lose.
You're learning self-knowledge
Studying for my A-Levels I learned how disciplined I was. I learned how ambitious I was. I learned how dedicated I was.
Knowing these things about myself has enabled me to draw on these character traits for the rest of my life.Studying is character building. You'll learn things about yourself a text book can never teach you. Click To Tweet
I'll give you an example. In the last few weeks I've started a new fitness programme. I've never been a very sporty person. When I was 16 I used a sprained ankle as an excuse to get out of P.E. for a whole year. If I'm honest with myself, I could have done P.E. I just didn't want to and the ankle was a handy excuse.
However, as I've got older the need to exercise has crept into my life as I try to control my weight and be healthy. I've learned to love it.
Then recently the opportunity to test a fitness programme came my way. When I saw what it entailed I nearly bottled out before I started. It was six days per week, alternating 35 minutes one day with 45 minutes the next. I didn't see how I would fit it into my life.
However, I started. I set my alarm for 6:01 am (it feels better being after 06:00 am, silly I know) and have risen at that time six days per week for nearly five weeks and done my exercise. I drew on what I'd learned about myself when I was in school to push me forward. More than a month in, this has become a fundamental part of my life and something I want to keep forever. However, in the first few weeks, without the self-discipline I know I have within me, I would not have carried on.
No chocolate for 15 months….
I have used this self-knowledge in many other spheres of my life. For example, exclusively breast-feeding both my children for a full year each. It was tough to keep going at times, but I set my goal and I knew I could do it because I'd done hard things before.
Once, I gave up chocolate as a new year's resolution. Chocolate didn't pass my lips for 15 whole months.
Your exam results are the key to your future. They will open the door to the next stage in your life. But, they are so much more than that. The process you go through to achieve them will teach you things about yourself that you will draw on for the rest of your life. It is character lessons like these that are the ones most worth learning. And, you should seek out difficult experiences so that you learn more about yourself.You should seek out difficult experiences so that you learn more about yourself. Click To Tweet
What do you know about yourself?
I've shared some personal stuff in this post to try and show you how the character lessons you learn from your exams will set you in good stead for your future. I'd love you to reflect on what you've learned about yourself while you take your exams, and to share those lessons in the comments below.
You may also like to share this post with your friends and discuss with them what they've learned about themselves. It could make for a very interesting and deep discussion (the kind of chat I have always loved to have my with friends). I'd love to hear about it if you do this, and maybe I can chip in too!