It’s the hinterland. Limbo. No man’s land.
That uncertain and uncomfortable period between the final exam and the subsequent results.
It can be difficult and distressing. Unsettling and hard to adapt.
The hard work is over, but resolution must wait.
The here and the now, at the summer’s beginning, ranks amongst the most testing times on the calendar for the UK’s teenage population for the reasons outlined above.
Stress. Panic. Guilt. These are all common emotions and feelings . . .
It might help to alleviate things a little to remember that those experiencing such feelings are far from alone in the boat.
Up and down the UK, young people are united in their collective angst.
Feeling like this is normal. This is nothing new.
Unlike the approach to Exam Season, the post-test period offers no opportunities for atonement. It has been and gone and there’s no chance to make up lost ground, to put in a little extra or to get back on track.
This being the case, there’s no point and little value in reliving it . . .
In going over it time and again . . .
In comparing answers.
It’s over and what will be will be. It’s this helplessness that can be the hardest.
Feeling sick and shaky, light-headed and anxious, worrying about it doesn’t help (quite the opposite, in fact).
It’s easier said than done, but the time has come to stop thinking about it.
Do something else. Capitalise on the free time being afforded. You’ve earned it and, in life, extended breaks such as these don’t come around often.
Think about hobbies. Do more outside. Exercise. Keep active.
Social media and screen time? It’s not the be all and end all. It’s there, online, that the recriminations and regrets (and subsequent stress, panic and guilt) are rampant . . .
To take a break, to get away, is to alleviate anxiety, even if it is just for a short time.
Ever thought about getting a job? Volunteering? Taking an internship?
Doing so offers not just an escape from the hinterland, but opportunities and some all-important life skills. Such things can stand a person in good stead for the future. The same cannot be said about dwelling on the things that cannot be controlled.
It’s not so simple, we get that . . .
Here at CPUK, we have experienced it at first hand, both as students and, rather more recently, from a parental perspective.
Failure and the future are things to fear and the terror can be gripping for all involved . . .
Unable to put it to one side?
Our main tip is to talk about it and not to bottle it up.
Find someone to listen and outline those fears. You might think that no-one else understands. You’re mistaken.
No matter what occurs this summer, options, openings and opportunities abound . . .
Plan ahead. Be calm. Consider all eventualities. Have more than one basket.
Sometimes, the twists and turns in the road lead to unexpected destinations that, at this stage, cannot be foreseen.
It is difficult, we understand this more than most, but take our advice, take a break and don’t be too hard on yourself.
This is the hinterland . . .
But limbo doesn’t last forever.