Board exams suck. We know. It’s a horrible time in life, and it probably feels like this is the worst you’re ever going to face. Sorry, kids. It’s not. There will be other issues in life which have nothing to do with your marks in these exams. There will also be several successes, achievements and joys in life which have absolutely nothing to do with your marks in the Board exams. We’ve all been through these horrid exams, and we feel your pain. We really do. You might think adults don’t get it, but we know what you’re going through. So, with our years of experience, and years spent building lives after the Boards, here is what we would like to tell all of you in Class 10th and 12th right now.
1. Take breaks when you need to, not just the ones you’ve scheduled
We often force ourselves to stick to scheduled time off and don’t listen to our bodies in the process. If you’re feeling too tired to focus, need to take a nap, watch some mindless TV for a bit, play a game or chat with a friend, do it. Your brain needs to breathe once in a while.
2. You will always remember this time. Unfortunately
We all remember the stress before the 10th and 12th Board exams. It was pointless, but we remember it. Most adults will tell you that they still wake up at night sometimes thinking they have an exam in the morning and they haven’t studied for it. But now, as adults, we also know that life gets better and you learn how to handle your stress better.
3. Don’t ignore your health or your sleep
Don’t stay up nights studying. It won’t help if you’re constantly tired. Board exams are not worth losing any sleep over or ignoring your health. Eat well, sleep well.
4. Don’t do that last minute, hurried revision on the day of the exam
You’ll see most of your classmates trying to cram something last minute, just before entering the exam hall. Don’t fall for it. All this will do is induce panic and scare you. By this point, you’ve studied all you could, so all you have to do is go in and answer a few questions about stuff you know pretty well.
5. Talk to someone
There are a number of people in your family who have been through exactly what you’re going through. Talk to your older siblings or cousins about the stress you’re feeling. Ask them what helped with the tension.
6. Failing your Board exams is not the end of the world. Really
You will get another chance to pass them. And you don’t have to do amazingly well in these exams to do well in life. If you don’t get the marks you were expecting, or if you fail, you can study more and sit for the exam again. People we know have sat for Compartment exams or Improvement exams and gone on to lead happy, successful lives. It eventually comes down to the amount of effort you’re willing to put in to succeed in the career you choose.
7. We all had friends who “didn’t study at all”. They lied
Every class in every school has kids who claim they didn’t study and still managed to ace their exams. Relax. They studied a lot, or they’re just really good in that subject. They’re not your competition, and you shouldn’t measure your achievements against theirs.
8. You don’t have to go to a particular college to succeed
Yes, Delhi University is one of the most prestigious ones out there. But that doesn’t mean everyone who studies in DU gets a great job later. It also doesn’t mean that someone who studies in a not-so-well-known university won’t do well in life. You don’t need to strive towards a ridiculous college cut-off in the 90s.
9. Track your idols
Whomever you idolise, or whatever you think you want to be, track that person’s history and footsteps or research that profession. If it’s a person whose life appeals to you, see what they’ve done to reach that position. If it’s a particular profession you want to pursue, see what the top achievers in the field have done over the years. Whatever the outcome of your board exams, nothing can stop you from working towards that end goal.
10. You’re feeling the stress because you’ve been told to feel it
Most of us feel stress because we’re anticipating it. That’s what happens with Board exams too. People tell you that you’re supposed to be stressed about this time. So, that’s what you do. Your parents are stressed, your teachers are stressed. But you don’t have to be. Don’t let their anxiety get to you.
And the last thing to remember is this…
11. It’s just another exam! You’ve done it before
By this time, you’ve cracked at least 4-5 final exams in your life, assuming they spared you in junior school. This particular final exam is just hyped and has a different name. That is all. You’ve studied everything that will be in those question papers throughout the year. Tackle it like you would tackle any other final exam, and you’ll be fine.
Click here for simple ways to deal with anxiety.
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