When taking an exam, you have to be calm and collected so you can focus on the problems at hand. However, there are times that the exam anxiety can get the best of you that you end up with a mental blank. It doesn’t matter if you’re preparing for a quiz, a long test, the finals or your SAT, you have to deal with your exam anxiety so you can do your best.
Here are some ways to help you cope with exam anxiety.
Be prepared! The best way to deal with exam anxiety is to study for it. Your anxiety will only escalate if you know you don’t know how to answer the questions because you haven’t understood the lesson and studied for it. Don’t cram for your test.
The worst time to start studying for a big test is the night before. Your brain needs time to absorb concepts so pay attention during the classes so that you only have to retrieve the information when you review.
Give yourself a few weeks to a few days before a major test to review. It’s better to do it in short increments over a period of time, rather than try to study everything in one sitting.
Practice visualization techniques. Another good way to deal with exam anxiety is to imagine yourself relaxed. Actively visualize yourself breezing through the questions. Think about how confident and good you’ll feel about yourself during the test and immediately after when you are done taking the exam.
Of course, don’t just daydream and not study. You can also visualize that you are able to study efficiently. Don’t underestimate the power of positive thinking in helping you prepare for and pass your test.
Get enough rest and sleep. Don’t bother putting in the long hours the night before your big test. It’s better to come in rested and refreshed. You’ll be able to think more clearly and focus on the task at hand.
Take care of business before you take the test. This simply means having a good breakfast the morning of your exam, so you don’t get tummy aches from hunger. Also, go use the bathroom before you take the test. If you’re anxious, you’re more likely to need to pee more. Take care of your needs so you can focus on your test.
Pace yourself when taking the test. There is a set time limit to take the exam, so be sure that you manage your time well. Don’t dwell on a single difficult question or you’ll end up using all your time trying to solve it, leaving the other questions left unanswered.
It’s better to go through the test, skip the challenging parts and just go back to try and solve it when you are done with the test. If you don’t, your anxiety will build up, causing you to have a mental block so that even the items that you know you should be able to answer will seem extremely difficult for you.
Don’t add to your stress. Now is not the time to have that big talk with your partner or have a fight with your parents. Your energy needs to be directed towards taking the test. Don’t relax by going out for drinks since alcohol will only slow you down. Avoid high-stress situations so keep yourself cocooned in a calm environment.
Do these things to help you manage your stress and anxiety. Don’t let exam anxiety get you down. Be prepared and focused and you’ll pass that test with flying colours.