No matter how prepared you are for an exam, you may feel some anxiety, something like the butterflies in your stomach. While feeling some anxiety is absolutely normal, due to the fact that your body releases some adrenaline in times of stress which triggers your “fight-or-flight response”, it may potentially lead you to forgetting everything. Therefore, let us present you some of the greatest scientific tips on how to beat the exam anxiety and ace that exam you have next week!
Exam anxiety is an epidemic among all of the students worldwide. The survey shows that on average, 96% of people have experienced exam anxiety at some point of their lives. And this will get even worse, when we will tell you that students who felt extremely anxious have performed on an average of 12% worse than those who were slightly anxious or not anxious at all. Exam anxiety underlines a huge spectrum under itself, meaning that there is a wide variety of symptoms and levels of feelings. While in some, it can reveal only in increased heartbeat, others may be debilitated with nausea, light-headedness, even vomiting.
Getting at least six hours of sleep for 3 days preceding the exam is crucial before the exam. Making sure that you are well-rested is the best way to increase focus during the exam and face the challenges you will have on hand. Pulling an all-nighter is a huge NO! when it comes to your brain’s ability to be concentrated on the day of the exam.
Studies have shown that students who have had a balanced diet up to one week before an exam actually perform better than those who had a high-protein diet. In fact, having the breakfast before the exam that is high in fiber, sugar and carbohydrates is the best thing! You need that accessible glucose in order to easily fuel your brain and do it for quite a long time. Losing energy means less concentration which can also lead to panic, even when you can’t answer very simple questions. I think you do not want that.
Having the positive self-imagery has been well-known as a great booster of self-confidence which caused less and less of exam anxiety. However, the only case of when it will work is only if you set yourself realistic goals. We are not telling you to lower your expectations or that you are not capable, but telling yourself that you will get 100 on every exam can be … slightly unachievable. Therefore, while feeling confident about your exam is a great thing, you should remember about keeping your feet planted on the ground.
To help distress, try and picture yourself in the happiest moment in your life, and then quickly change it, imagining yourself in the exam room. This helps your brain to associate the happy feelings with writing the exam and primes you to be ready for the task. Just one more thing, don’t do a lot of this, as you will not be able to manage your time correctly and will spend the rest of the exam daydreaming. The best is to minimize that or even to do it right before entering the exam room.
If you want to boost your confidence even more, try picturing the questions that may be in your head and quickly answering them. This will allow you to feel better with the knowledge you have. If you want to prime your brain even more, get familiar with the exam room. If the exam room is not your classroom that you have used to, make sure to take a small field trip to it a few days in advance. By setting the surroundings before brain it will help your brain to ease the anxiety of an unknown place and will definitely help your brain to feel more confident and perform much better.
Another good trick that will help you to lower down your feelings of insecurity is to take a blank piece of paper and write down all the things that you feel you have disadvantages in. Right below; write all the things that you feel very confident about. At the end, crumble that paper and throw it away! This may sound very crazy, but these symbolic gestures can really boost your confidence. Studies have shown that anxious students who used this technique performed much better than those anxious students who didn’t.
We hope that these scientific tips will help you go into the exam room with confidence, feeling much less anxious! We are sure that YOU are going to ace it!