By Peri Sualp……

When Christmas and New Year “the most wonderful time of the year” is around the corner and we were all super excited about this, guess what happened?! “The most stressful time of the year” came by!! Exams, tests, evaluations etc…. are a few of the most stressful things in this world for students that are not avoidable and unfortunately there’s no place to run or hide!

The funny thing is, it doesn’t really matter how good you are; you are still under this pressure. The top set students are in panic because they want to keep their grades up in the sky! The lower sets are in panic because they need to raise their grades to acceptable levels (parent factor!). But whichever group you are in, there’s no point in making extra stress because the stress and panic can only make things worse! When you are in panic your heart beat quickens, your blood pressure changes, your breath shortens, even your vision can be blurred, you can sweat and your body might tremble as well. This can go way up to panic attacks! And if you really feel over anxious about the exams you may feel those changes in your body and then you start not thinking clearly and logically, you may even forget all you know. and then, what’s the point of putting extra time and effort for studying all those hours for the exams?

Well, if you are in that panic group, here are some hints that you might find useful!

Before the exam:

First of all devote enough time for your studies, this will make you feel more confident. Take enough sleep one night before the exam so that your brain can function better. Make sure you have a proper breakfast because you need energy. Give your mind some space, you may listen to your favourite music or even play a game on your mobile, this may reduce pre-exam stress. Have a chocolate (preferably dark) right before entering the exam, chocolate will trigger cortisol and endorphins in your body which act as a natural stress fighter and make you feel more relaxed and happy. If you’ll feel more stressful talking to your friends then try to isolate yourself in a quiet corner but usually it’s better to talk with people who are experiencing  the same circumstances.

During the exam:

When you sit for the exam, take a deep breath and keep doing this until you feel alright. After you get your exam paper, first focus and then just read the questions and instructions that are given to you very carefully. If you don’t really understand the question, read it carefully word by word again and just try to understand. But if still that doesn’t work, just resume your paper and come back to it later. After you finish your exam paper, think positive and check through your answers over and over again until you really think all the questions are answered correctly.

Basically, that’s all you have to do! You don’t have to panic if you already studied and if you’re on track. After all, you did the best you could and there’s no need to worry about the rest of it.

Always remember to think positive and be energetic! I hope you all achieve the best grades in your exams this year.

Good luck!