Everyone knows that exam time can cause a huge amount of stress, especially by the time you get to your finals at postgraduate level, however, there are ways to deal with it, and ways not to.
Check out the following examples of how not to deal with exam stress :
Pretend it is Not Happening
Ignoring the fact that you have very serious exams coming up is not going to help you. Yes, it may help you to get through the lead up to the exams without having a nervous breakdown, but when you are sat at your desk staring at a paper that you have not revised for, you may begin to regret your decision, and panic is sure to ensue. Ignoring your impending exams is not a method to deal with the stress, it is escapism, and you can’t run forever.
Beat Yourself Up
Pretty much the opposite of ignoring your upcoming exams is constantly giving yourself a hard time because you are not prepared enough, have not stuck to your schedule, or simply do not believe in your own abilities. It is important to motivate yourself, but this should not involve beating yourself up day and night because you are stressed out about your exams. You need to give yourself a break and put things into perspective. Work hard, but do not pile additional pressure on yourself.
Try to Develop Super Powers
It may be disappointing to admit, but you are only human and there is only so much you can fit into a day. You need to set realistic targets for revision , otherwise you are going to fall behind, and this can be very demotivating. By being practical about what you are able to achieve with your time, you will be able to hit your targets and this will boost morale. A happy, high spirited student is one who achieves!
Put Yourself on Lock Down
One of the most common responses to exam time stress is for students to place themselves on lock down in their house in an attempt to achieve more during revision time. This can be counter productive in most cases as it will not improve your mood, mental capacity, or motivation. It is important to establish some sort of balance during revision time, and this includes going out for a walk, getting some exercise, having a laugh with your friends, and giving your mind time to absorb the information which you have been learning. Overload is not good for the memory, so if you feel as though you are shutting off, put down the books, close the lid on your laptop, and get out the house!
Overdose on Caffeine
One of the first things that students reach for when they are in need of a boost is caffeine. Coffee, coke, energy drinks, or whatever else it may be, certainly might keep you going for an hour longer in the night, but they are really not doing you any long term favours. It is much better to adopt a proper healthy eating plan and to drink plenty of water. It may sound boring, but this will actually improve concentration better than anything else. Plus plenty of sleep….sleep deprivation is just about your worst enemy during revision and exam time.