How to Deal With Exam Stress

  • Financial Aid
  • March 12, 2024
  • 6 min read
school classroom

It’s that time of year again – exams are just around the corner. For some students, this means days spent hunched over textbooks and nights spent studying until the early hours of the morning.

While a certain amount of stress can be helpful in terms of motivation, too much stress can have a negative impact on your health and performance.

So how can you strike a balance and make sure you’re prepared for exam season without causing yourself undue anxiety? Here are some tips to help you deal with exam stress.

Understand what works for you – everyone deals with stress differently, so find out what makes you feel better

One of the best ways to manage stress is to understand what works for you. Everyone has different needs when it comes to dealing with stress, and while some people may find comfort in physical activities such as exercise or yoga, others might prefer solitary activities like reading a book or listening to music.

Knowing which activities work for you is essential in making sure that your needs are met when it comes time to relax and de-stress. Exercise can be especially effective in releasing endorphins, helping your body to relax, and increasing feelings of happiness.

While careful reading and listening to soothing sounds like classical music can help clear the mind and provide the clarity you need after a stressful day.

When you take the time to figure out what works for you, giving yourself a few necessary moments of peace can become easier – enabling you to tackle whatever life throws at you with greater ease.

Make a plan- Having a plan and knowing what you need to do can help reduce anxiety as it gives you a sense of control over the situation

Anxiety can be a debilitating mental health issue, particularly in times of stress, like exam periods. One of the most effective ways to combat anxious thoughts is to make a plan. Having a clear idea of what you need to do and when can help to establish a sense of control over the situation, reducing negative thoughts.

So if exam season is coming up, start by making an exam timetable. Break down your goals into smaller objectives such as topics to revise for each exam or chapters that need to be read for coursework. This will give you insight into how much work needs to be done and how long it should take, providing comfort from knowing that everything is achievable.

Knowing what you need to do and when makes it easier both mentally and physically – because it stops the feeling of being overwhelmed – and helps create momentum so you can work through difficult tasks efficiently.

Even something as simple as carrying around a pen and sticky notes mean that ideas don’t get lost in activity fog; here you can jot down things that come up during the day but then put aside, providing relief until exam time arrives.

Having a plan doesn’t just provide mental clarity; it also makes sure nothing gets overlooked which could ultimately affect exam performance and scores. At the end of the day, having a plan gives us our best chance at staying calm under pressure so we’re confident enough to pull off our best exam performance.

Take breaks- It is important to take regular breaks whilst studying as it allows your mind to have some time to relax

Everyone knows that studying for exams can be stressful and often overwhelming. One of the best ways to keep your head in check during this process is to make sure you take regular breaks.

Not only does this break up the monotony of studying and help to energize your mind, but it also gives your brain some much-needed relief from the strain of exams. Taking breaks allows you to step back and gain a new perspective on the material you’re studying, which can even lead to a greater understanding of difficult topics.

Additionally, taking regular breaks brings improved focus and concentration, as well as increased productivity when it comes time to work on exams themselves. All in all, making a point to take breaks can make all the difference when it comes time for exams.

Just remember: it’s not always about how long you study, but how effectively!  So don’t be afraid to give yourself some breathing space—it will certainly pay off in the end!

Avoid procrastination – Putting off studying will only make you feel more stressed, so try and get ahead of your workload

Everyone procrastinates from time to time, but when it comes to studying for school, it is essential to be proactive in order to succeed. Putting off tasks until the last minute can lead to increased stress and panic as deadlines loom, making it difficult to focus and retain information.

To avoid procrastination, try breaking big tasks into smaller chunks, then tackle them one at a time. Make an achievable plan to stick to and keep yourself accountable by writing down timelines or setting reminders on your phone.

Additionally, rewarding yourself after completing each task can help break up the monotony of studying and make it feel more manageable. 

One of the best ways to stay on top of your exams is simply by getting ahead – if you manage your time efficiently and do some extra work early, you will thank yourself when the pressure mounts up closer to the deadline.

When it comes to studying, being proactive is a surefire way of avoiding procrastination and reducing stress levels in the long run.

Stay positive – Belief in yourself and know that you can do it!

Staying positive is a key part of achieving success. Negative thoughts and feelings can limit our abilities, create roadblocks in our minds, and prevent us from achieving our goals. It’s important to take a step back from challenges and worry and focus on believing in ourselves and our potential.

Building self-confidence is the cornerstone of staying positive and overcoming struggles along the way. When we find ourselves doubting, it helps to think back on all that we’ve accomplished so far.

Focusing on all the wins in our lives helps remind us of how capable we are. And if you’re feeling overwhelmed by exam prep or an upcoming exam, try to break down each task into small manageable portions so that it doesn’t feel overwhelming or too much to handle. Lastly, know that you can do it!

Believe in yourself—you have the power within you to reach your goal. With resilience, determination, and hard work, anything is possible. Stay motivated, stay confident, and stay positive!

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Financial aid at Northwest Career College

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To best support our students we offer a range of financial aid including the Pell Grant, Subsidized Loans, Unsubsidized Loans, and Parent Plus Loans. Call us today at (702) 403-1592 to speak with one of our experienced Financial Aid Officers who will help find the best financial support options for you.

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Dr. Thomas Kenny was born in Chicago, raised in Las Vegas, but considers Northwest Career College his true home. He has been working at NCC for as long as he can remember. He started by moving and building furniture on…Read Full Bio