How to de-stress and relax after exams

A white tea cup with flowers and 2 open books on a table.

This year has been challenging for many students, with the ongoing pandemic changing the way we engage with our studies and university life as a whole. Therefore, as exam season comes to an end, many of us will be finishing the academic year with a hope to relax and take some time off. To help you, here are some top tips on how to de-stress after exams!

Think positively

Rather than focusing on where you might have gone wrong in a particular exam, focus on the things you did well. You’ve worked hard and completed your exams, so you should know that you did the best that you can. Remind yourself of your strengths, and that you can no longer control the outcome. If you continue to think positively, this should allow you to focus on the joy of having finished exams rather than the future results. In such a difficult year, you should be proud of yourself for getting through the entire exam season!

Tidy up your workspace

De-cluttering your workspace and tidying away your exam/revision resources can really help to clear your mind. By moving revision materials that you no longer need out of view, this can help you let go of exam nerves and start getting excited for summer!


After a difficult exam season and academic year, you deserve to celebrate! Organise a celebratory meal or movie night with friends or family, and be proud that you got to the end of your exams.

Catch up with friends

Over the exam period, many of us can find it increasingly difficult to stay in contact with friends as we become so caught up in revision and exam stress. Therefore, it’s important to reach out and speak to the people you care about when you can! Check up on your friends and see if you can schedule a time to meet. If you’re worried about results, this can be especially helpful as many of your friends will be in the same boat, so this can help you remember that you’re not alone.

Take some time for yourself

The stress of exams can often mean that students work long hours with very little downtime, but it’s so important to take time off and relax! Once your exams are over, try taking some time to yourself and doing some of the things you’d been longing for during exams. This could be something as simple as binging a new series, or giving yourself an at-home spa day. Whatever you enjoy, it’s important to reward yourself for all the hard work you’ve put in, and to take some time appreciating the simpler things that you might have neglected during exam season.

Spend time outdoors

Spending time outdoors can be great for your mental health, and can really help with post-exam nerves. You can use this time to exercise by going for a walk or run, or you could find a nice outdoor area just to sit and relax. If you’re in the Canterbury area, there are many beautiful outdoor spaces to explore, so take advantage of the scenery Kent offers! Going for a long walk can also help you to feel rejuvenated after spending a lot of time sitting at a desk, and you can use this time to listen to podcasts or music, which might help to take your mind off of exams.

Make plans for results day

If you plan something enjoyable for results day, this might calm your post-exam jitters! Maybe organise a celebration with your household, or a fun activity with some friends. This should help shift your focus to a more positive outlook, and allows you to keep reminding yourself that there is something to look forward to.

Plan for Kent Summer Fest

Kent Summer Fest is a great opportunity to unwind, as a vast range of activities are on offer. This includes outdoor cinema screenings, food and drink, live music, and workshops. Make plans with friends to head to campus and enjoy the activities available!

No matter what you decide to do, remember that you have done your best. In a year of so many complications and difficulties, you managed to keep going and got through your exams. Well done!

Last updated