Ways to de-stress before an exam
We all have experienced the stress during exams, for some it can just be fear, panic but for some they experience sweaty palms, sick stomach, headaches, find that items that you studied a million times mysteriously disappear from your memory. Does this sound like you? If it does we have ten methods to help you distress and relax to get that A!
Study: The only way to pass a test is to study. However this does not mean last minute studying until 2:00 am the night before (trust me I’ve been there and have Cs and drool stained textbooks to prove it) The way to study is not to do all your studying at once. Do it in chunks of one-two hours with half hour brain numbing breaks in between.
Start studying weeks before the test at least two weeks before minimum. Set aside time that’s just for studying and nothing else. Study your whole way through a chunk, non-stop and then take a break and do something that has nothing to do with studying for a half and hour. You can take a bath, play a game, call a friend or have a snack. The key here is to rest your brain. Don’t even think about the material until the half hour is over.
Make studying more fun. Memory is created by an active desire to remember. If you make it fun and interesting, you’re much likely to remember it. Make some flash cards, grab a sibling or a roommate and play your own version of jeopardy, or 20 questions, family feud, whatever it takes to remember. If you haven’t made flash cards or a summery study guide, you should and take it with you on the go. Whenever you are on the train, bus, waiting in line, just pull out your study guide and put in five to ten minutes, the constant re-enforcement of the material will help you to remember it.
Get a study-buddy. This is related to making studying more fun, if you’re laughing over someone’s theories with a group of friends from your class, or trying to pick out a logarithm with the help of your significant other, you’ll be having more fun and thus the memory will stick much easier causing less stress.
Take time to visualize. Your thoughts become things, if you believe it, it will happen. The night before your test, or in the shower the morning before take to time to visualize yourself doing well on the test. Picture yourself bent over the paper and knowing each of the answers, imagine the look on your mom’s face when you show her the “A”. Athletes often do this before a big game, besides; it can’t hurt anyone.
Sleep early the night before the test. It’s important for your mind to relax, go to bed early the night before the test. I recommend an hour earlier than you usually do. A good night’s sleep will help you focus better tomorrow.
Have breakfast the day of the test. It’s hard to concentrate when you’re hungry, also breakfast provides you with nutrients that will give you energy to keep your body and your brain active.
Reward yourself for your efforts. Make plans to get a movie and ice cream after the test. Don’t do it before the test as it might distract you, but let it be something you can look forward to after all the work you’ve done.
Brain drain before you begin. Ask for a blank piece of paper, or flip the exam paper over and write down all you can think of regarding what you studied on that subject. It might be key-words, theories, formulas you just know you might forget; this way you can use this brain drain as reference. It also allows you to gather your thoughts before you conquer the complicated confusing word problem.
Relax and take a deep breath. It’s not the end of the world if you get a B. If you know that you are studying then you have been doing something right. So avoid panic and just relax you’ll do fine, Good luck!