How to Cope with Exam Failure?

By | 19/08/2015

Motivating and inspiring quote on failureA very successful man once said “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently“.  Failure has been a word dreaded by each and every person to have ever walked the earth. Everyone you have probably ever come across is scared of failing.

The fear of failure is sometimes so intense that it renders people helpless and adversely affects their performance, but very much like everything else as much as failure has the ability to diminish performance it also has the capacity to motivate and enhance results. Here are some great tips that explain how one can cope with exam failure.

Top 10 Tips to Cope with Exam Failure

Assess your Standards

The biggest challenge most of us face is of realistic estimation. We tend to either overestimate ourselves or underestimate the challenge in front of us.  It of utmost importance that you have thorough awareness of your own standards and a realistic assessment of your preparation for the particular examination.

The most important thing a failure tells us is where exactly we stand in the competition which gives us a clear idea of the areas we must work harder on.

Better Insight

Failure is regarded as the opposite of success when in fact it’s a part of success itself.  Failures not only provide us with intellectual awareness of our standards but also give us a window to emotionally reflect on our competencies. Failure in an important examination or even a disappointing performance gives you space to explore emotionally and effectively the areas that you can work upon. For instance some people tend to work relentlessly with unrealistic standards of achievement which can be very obviously heartbreaking and disappointing when faced with a failure.

So failure is not only an opportunity for intellectual exploration but also of generating emotional insights about your modus operandi and goals.

Reminiscing Success

A very effective way of dealing with failures is reminding one of previous successes. It might sound redundant and also very cliche but it is an effective method for boosting up moods. When you revere in past success and remind yourself of the hard work and dedication that went in to the achievement, it not only motivates you but also tells you how once if you will yourself to achieve something it can turn into reality and all of this is backed up by the evidence of your own previous successes.

Why did you Start?

Coping with exam failure can be very difficult and draining but what can really help a person in dealing with it better is reminding one of why they undertook the project at all. This acts a great motivator for most. If you’re complete interest and motivation lies in the achievement of the task, reminding yourself of it, can help and if what you are failing at is something you didn’t want to do to begin with then you can take future steps in accordance with this awareness.

Talk to your Own-self

There are just this much other people’s motivational monologues and quotes off the internet can do for you, what actually works is for you to talk to your own self. You know your situation, your strengths, your weaknesses and your emotional states the very best. Talking to you involves motivating yourself.  The talking doesn’t have to be literal. You can express yourself in whatever way you like the best with the aim of reassuring yourself of the future. For instance you can artistically express yourself and draw motivational posters.  The objective is to reassure you of your own abilities and future possibilities.

Also Read: Motivational Quotes for Students

Weigh your Options

After a failure occurs, one must step back and assess the situation to determine the next course of action. Whether the exam/ test can be retaken, If there is any other substitute test that can be given, If the test is at all worth doing again etc. So according to the situation, the person must try and make an intellectual appraisal and decide his or her next course of action

Share What you Feel

Everyone takes rejection and failure differently but a lot of people have the tendency to completely shut down and not share what they are going through with anyone at all. This can do more harm than good. Shutting off from everyone completely can magnify the negative feelings and make the person feel worse about their situation.

Talking and sharing leads to constructive conversation that in turn facilitate better dealing with failures and disappointments

Treat yourself Gently

When a failure occurs, the natural tendency for anyone of us is to criticize ourselves and put ourselves down.  It is natural indeed but is something that shouldn’t persist. Treating yourself gently requires the person to detach themselves from the situation and try and objectively analyze what’s happening and to then empathize with their own selves and not treat themselves in ways which can lead to the generation of more negative feelings and ideas. Cut yourself some slack and do not have unrealistic and stringent standards.

Prevent Depression

A very essential aspect of how to cope with exam failure is to prevent a person from slipping into depression. Depression can be reactive in nature and can set in when a person faces a very severe failure, exam or otherwise. In such a situation the best thing is always to consult a mental health professional popularly known as psychologists or psychotherapists.  Depression in turn will worsen the current cycle a person has, as  the symptoms of depression have things like a feeling of hopelessness, a sense of worthlessness, problems in sleeping etc. The best is to consult professionals and come up with a plan that helps the person to combat with his/her struggles better

Surround yourself with Options

Another way of coping with examination failure is to surround one’s self with options. Failure is felt harder when someone fails at something that was their only option which leads to a crisis because of lack of other opportunities to perform in. Giving yourself multiple options from the beginning doesn’t leave you as helpless as it possibly could have. Even after a failure has occurred, the best way to bounce back is to rework for the same examination of course, but also to give yourself more opportunities and a space to explore other fields.

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