Coping with Anxiety

Exams can be stressful, but there are steps you can take to control your nerves.

What is stress/anxiety?
Feeling stressed means feeling anxious about something that you’re having difficulty controlling or confronting. It can also affect motivation, making it hard to study for exams.

Stress benefits
A small amount of stress is necessary. It’s part of our natural warning system, making us alert to danger and ready to run from threatening situations. In an exam situation, a small amount of adrenaline pumping through your body keeps you alert.

Manage your studying
Don’t go mad and lock yourself in with your books 24 hours a day. Two/three hours is the maximum you can study before you stop absorbing what you read, so break up periods of work with periods of relaxation. Reward yourself for your hard work with small treats.

Have a sense of perspective
Do your best, work hard and prepare well. Although you want to do well, if you don’t do as well as you hoped there is always an alternative opportunity.

Be nice to yourself
Self-affirmation works wonders! Tell yourself that you can do it, and psyche yourself up before the day.

Look after yourself
Take regular study breaks and when you’re not studying don’t dwell on exam worries. Hobbies and sports can make you feel more relaxed and boost your confidence. Avoid rich or spicy foods – feed your brain with healthy foods and when the exams are done plan a party!

Make sure you get enough sleep; a light snack or a glass of milk and a warm bath will help you relax before bed.