Look Back and Be Proud!
About a month ago, whilst I was submerged in revision and lecture material, and in the midst of a breakdown about my progress during my final year, I read back through one of my old blog posts.
I don’t tend re-read/ watch my posts once their published, but something told me to go back and read this specific part of a post I had written back in first year. Who knew that this was a bit of advice that future me would need to take? It got me thinking about how often we’re told to look forward, and not look back, but maybe we should more often. Having spoken to many students who feel the same way after the turmoil of the last year here’s my analogy for any other student who is feeling the same way on the lead up to exams:
Imagine yourself at the bottom of that spiral staircase where the top seems unreachable. Perhaps there’s a moment you can relate this imagery to.Looking up at the length of the journey and deciding to make that first step upwards takes more strength than we realise. The first few steps after that may be a breeze. Then you will get to a point where you will slow down and seem like you have been very little progress. You can clearly see the bottom, but the top is still not in sight.
From there on there will be times when you will sprint up those steps. Other times you will slow down. You will also need to stop and take a break every now and then because there are too many steps to handle at one point! Sometimes the steps may disappear for some length (like in cartoons) and you will find yourself suddenly sliding down a few levels.
Then there’s the middle part where you may feel completely lost. You’re just going around and round and round, climbing up, fighting the fatigue, and seemingly getting nowhere. Here it’s important to look back and reflect on the progress you have made so far. Maybe you can’t see the top, but you can barely see the bottom either! Look back down at those hundreds of steps that lie before you. You did that.
Right at this very moment, the end is almost in sight at the stage you’re at now. Take time to look down and reflect on how far you have come. You have already overcome so much. However big or small it’s all added up to where you are at this very moment. That’s an achievement to be proud of, so give yourself credit. Sit and enjoy the view from where you are just for one moment.
So, to anyone who needs to be reminded; to any student who feels like they have regressed in progress: Remember to look back. It has been a tough year or so. Whatever has happened this year doesn’t undo all that you have achieved so far.
Exams will be over with very soon! Even if you feel low now, hopefully, you will look back at this moment one day and feel proud of yourself.