How to Manage Stress During Exam Week
With exams just around the corner, managing stress is one of the most important ingredients in doing well. Here are the top tips for getting by.
1. Pet Some Puppies
Puppy rooms during exam time are becoming increasingly popular, as being around trained dogs have been shown to reduce stress and relax students.
2. Take an Evening Off
For one night during exam week, don't study or look at your books. Instead, take that time to recharge by watching a movie, visiting your family, reading a book, or whatever you feel like.
3. Avoid All-Nighters
It's tempting to cram as much studying in as you can the night before, but close your books and go to bed. The later you stay up that night—especially if you're not a night owl—the more harm you'll be doing. If you haven't learned the material by this point, you definitely won't the night before.
4. Eat Well
During finals week, your body is metaphorically under attack from stress. Treat it right by giving it a fighting chance, filling it with fruits and vegetables. You don't have to quit soda and candy bars, but just give your body a little vacation for one week.
5. Take a Practice Run
Reading and rereading your notes will only get you so far, as marks aren't awarded for how many pages you've gone over. Instead, study by writing a mock exam the way your quizzes and midterms have been styled.
6. Keep Perspective
There's a saying: "Nothing is ever as good or as bad as it seems." Keep that in mind when you're in the middle of exam week and things might seem overwhelming. While a looming final might be the biggest thing in your world right now, it's a guarantee that it won't in 10 or 20 years time.
7. Get Enough Sleep
Short of not looking at the material at all, nothing will stress you out faster than shorting yourself on sleep. It may not always be possible to get a full eight or nine hours of sleep each night, but try to at least stick to some sort of regular schedule.
8. Visualize the Exam
World class athletes run through races and competitions in their head thousands of times, preparing themselves for any possible situation. Do the same: mentally review reading through the questions, your approach in tackling questions, what happens if a pencil breaks or a pen runs out of ink, and dealing with noise around you.
9. Have Fun!
As tough as finals week is, it's just one week when it's all said and done. Don't get too down on yourself, as it'll be over before you know it. And take the time to soak it all in, because all too soon, you'll be crossing the stage to receive your degree and this time in your life will be a distant memory.