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The views of this article are the perspective of the author and may not be reflective of Confessions of the Professions.
How To Deal With Stress & Anxiety
Are you one of those people who get very anxious when you have an exam coming up? Don’t feel too bad about yourself, you can get over it. Truth is, everyone gets a little exam jitters naturally because you want to do well…which is a good thing. The trick is to find a way to relax your nerves and you’ll be alright.
Some may say it can be easier said than done, but all it takes is making the decision to maintain control of your situation at all times. Afterall, you wouldn’t want to get so anxious that you end up failing your exam because you spent the entire time worrying or worse missing the exam altogether because of a nervous breakdown.
To avoid a full-on anxiety attack you have to pace yourself. Timing is very important. So, you have been attending classes and submitting assignments all year long. But you must ensure that you make the time to study along the way. That is, go over your lessons/notes, read widely and practice.
If when you get around to the time for your exam and find that you have not been up-to-date with your studying, you will surely start to panic. Playing catch-up will make you start to worry about whether or not you can cover all the material in the short space of time you have from now to your exam. Managing your time wisely is essential to avoiding any such situation.
Protecting your mental status is also very important. When it’s coming around to the time for your big test, you need to remove yourself from any stressful situation or surrounding as this can compound your feeling of anxiety. Study in a peaceful environment and pace yourself.
A part of maintaining your mental health is taking care of your body. Always make time to exercise for a few minutes every day. Some people like to exercise before studying, while others choose to exercise in-between studying. Whichever works for you, do it. Exercise helps to get the blood circulation going and prepares the brain to work.
Of course, your brain and body needs fuel to keep you going too so you should also ensure that you eat well and keep your body hydrated. Many times, we get tied up in studying for extended periods and forget to eat or drink water. Think about a car running on little to no fuel. You can just imagine its fate if it’s not topped-up and still being forced to work. That’s right, it will shut off. Don’t forget to feed your body. It will shut off on you too. One way to ensure that you are eating and drinking enough water daily is having a meal calendar that reminds you when it’s time to drink water and have a meal.
Perhaps the most important thing that you can do to cope with your exam anxiety is ensure that your body gets enough rest. Studies show that lack of sleep or poor-quality sleep can lead to fatigue, anxiety, and lack of focus. Don’t try to stretch yourself thin, especially as it gets closer to your big day. You will need all the focus and energy it takes to conquer your exam.
On the big day, try to focus on the course material that you have learned and keeping track of the time as you go along. Ensure that you are well-rested, fed and hydrated.
While each person’s case will be different, these are useful tips that can benefit everyone no matter if you are just starting out or not. If you have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, you’ll should always consult with your doctor for medical advice.
Go forth and rock that exam!