“You need pressure to make diamonds.”
It’s a cheesy sentiment, but it’s true that sometimes we need the pressure of a situation to have a breakthrough, grow, build talent or find something amazing.
The viva isn’t one of those situations though. Your success there shouldn’t be via pressure on the day. If you talk to plenty of graduates about their experiences, pressure isn’t something they describe.
Diamonds need pressure, but they need time too. If we want to think about diamonds, the PhD and metaphors, then really it’s you who is the diamond in the story.