A message to our teenage selves on results day

Because bad grades really aren't the end of the world, right?

Remember those agonizing weeks of waiting? The emotional rollercoaster of dread, excitement and resignation? Oh, results day. You never do forget the day that you picked up your exam results and finally see those grades staring back at you.

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But looking back, was it really worth all that anguish? Probably not (but if you’re still reeling, here are 5 pieces of career advice from your parents that you should really listen to).

So, in honour of all our A-level wielding comrades, here are a few things that we wish we could have told our 18-year-old selves on results day…

‘If I were speaking to my 18-year-old self – who couldn’t eat her Cocoa Pops on the morning I headed off to get my exam results because of the tummy butterflies – I’d say “Right now this might feel like mega news on par with Take That splitting up (this was the 90s, guys) but honestly, it’ll all come good eventually. Take That got back together, right? So straighten up your hair scrunchie, crack open a Hubba Bubba and a can of Pepsi Max and let’s get this job done.'”
Tracey Ramsden – Features Editor

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‘I don’t think exam results (SATS, GCSE’s, A Levels etc etc) matter that much at all. I got D’s in science, maths, German and loads of other stuff that I can’t even remember studying (go figure). What I do remember about results day is going to Reading Festival for the first time and forgetting to bring any suitable clothing. Such as a jacket. Or trousers.

The rest of my Reading crew got far better grades than me, but 13 years on, we are all still friends, all have jobs and get paid actual money.

So, if you didn’t do well, retake some exams. Don’t think higher education is for you? Do an apprenticeship. We live in a world where people make a living from flogging Bootea on Instagram. If that doesn’t inspire you, nothing will.’
Holly Rains – Deputy Digital Editor

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‘If you didn’t do so well, don’t worry. Life is full of disappointments. Work out where it went wrong and don’t make the same mistake again.

And if you did do well, don’t play it down. Just hang out with people that did really well so you can all be smug together.’
Dan Foley – Audience Development Manager


‘Sure, A Levels are important, but the only people who get across-the-board top marks are the academic all-rounders. In reality, your future career will be more about narrowing down your skills to one specific area, so just assess what your strengths are (they needn’t be academic) and go from there.

In a few years time you’ll struggle to remember what any of your friends got for their A-Levels anyway. Honestly? Right now I’m struggling to remember what I got for mine.’
Lucy Pavia – Entertainment Editor

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‘Listen. It’s far too early in your life to know where you want to end up anyway, so don’t worry too much.’
Sunil Makan – Multimedia Editor

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