We’ve gotten to a tough part of the year. Exams are on the horizon, assignments are due and you’ve barely touched your major work. The cold weather is settling in and even though you’re dreaming of summer holidays, they’re too far away to give you any hope. Instead, you’re shivering your way through recess and lunch and spending the whole time in class thinking about the nap you’re going to have when you can finally go home and crawl in bed.

At this point, you might feel yourself giving up. It’s been a hard slog so far with exams and assignments and you’re losing any motivation to keep going. You’ve stopped being able to cross things off your to do list and it seems like the work is never ending- it’s easy to think you’re too far behind to catch up.

You’re tired. No- tired isn’t the right word. You’re fucking exhausted. All the late cramming sessions and hours spent typing out essays you should have started weeks ago are catching up to you. No Doz, Redbull and endless cups of coffee are powering you through the day and all you can manage when you finally finish class is to head home and throw yourself into bed.

Maybe you’ve been getting good marks up until now, or maybe you’ve been flunking all your essays. Either way, your motivation to keep working is drying up and you don’t know how you’re going to get through all the revision you need to do for your exams.

Right now it’s normal to stop caring. It’s normal to want to give up and call it a day. To say ‘that’s enough, I’ve given it all I’ve got and there’s nothing left’.  I get it, and it’s okay. Despite what everyone is saying it’s okay to be at the point where you’re done.

But please trust me when I tell you that you’re nearly there. The finish line is creeping closer and closer and all you need to do is get there. Right now, the pressure might feel like it’s reaching breaking point but once you walk out of your final exam, once the marks are released and rankings start rolling out, you’ll realise that this was just a tiny blip in a lifetime of experiences ahead of you.

Give yourself a break if you need it. Have a massive sleep in, spend a day in bed or a weekend where you don’t think about stress. Look after your body- caffeine and stress isn’t healthy, mentally or physically. Stretch, drink some water and get some fresh air.

Talk to your parents, your best friend or your favourite teacher. Talk to your school counsellor or your GP. Tell them you’re struggling and get their support to help push you through to the end of the year.

I know it’s hard. I know you’re overwhelmed. I know you want to give up. But you are going to make it through this, I promise. Eventually, you will come out the other side and realise that you made it. Even with pressure, stress and sheer exhaustion trying to push you down, you will have battled through and that’s a bloody amazing achievement.

@livynicholls

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