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The 11 Stages of Revision We All Go Through

By Joseph Birdsey

Updated March 18, 2021 Updated March 18, 2021

Revising is hard. Really hard. So hard, in fact, that procrastination is the mind’s natural method of self-preservation. Sort of.

Either way, we’re lucky that we have Twitter to act as a diary at every stage of the revising process. As proof that you’re not on your own, here’s the 11 stages of revision that everyone goes through–we’re praying for you!

1. Peer Pressure

Before you’ve even started thinking about revising, it seems everybody else has already started. You just want to live your life, so you start (desperately) thinking of other things you “need” to do.

2. Denial

Deep down, you know it’s time to relearn everything you’ve forgotten over the past year, but, sure. Selfie session by the pool. They’re not going to take themselves, are they?

3. Realization

When you admit that, like Mattie, you should probs actually start revising.

So, you sit at your desk, with your laptop on. “I can do this!” you think. Your highlighters sit, neatly arranged by colour, waiting patiently to help you LEARN.

But then it hits you.

4. Crisis

You suddenly start to panic, asking yourself, “Can I do this? Do I actually want to do this? What will happen to me if I fail this exam? Could I afford to fail this exam? What’s for dinner? What if it’s me that’s the problem? What if I’m incapable of revising properly?”

You think, “Maybe my friends are finding this hard, too.” So, you decide to go on Instagram (because why not: it’s not like you’ve got anything else to be doing).

But even there, it’s not safe.

5. Paranoia

You start to compare yourself to everybody else that’s revising. We’re all in the same boat though, aren’t we? Aren’t we?!

6. The False Start

You finally sit down, and make a start.

But not really.

7. Progress

Before you know it, you’ve actually got somewhere with your revision. Finished that first chapter? Time to tweet about it, of course.

8. Distraction

Sometimes, procrastination is like waking up after sleepwalking downstairs. You don’t even how you got here.

9. Acceptance

You realize that the only way out of this is through…

10. Dedication

But… wait… before you know it…



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This article was originally published in April 2017 . It was last updated in March 2021

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Written by

Jo is part of QS's social media team. He also writes content for the site, and holds a BA English degree from Goldsmiths, University of London.

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