How To Unlock Your Inner Calm During Exam Season
January exam season is in full swing and there may be a few of you out there feeling a little stressed
But before you go all incredible hulk on your housemates and friends, take a moment to digest our guide to unlocking your inner calm during exam season…
Rule Number 1: DON’T Ignore Exam Stress
If there’s one thing that we can’t stress enough (no pun intended) it’s don’t ignore your feelings when it comes to exam stress! Trying to ‘carry on regardless’ when you’re feeling overwhelmed or strung out about your upcoming exams, is a sure fire way to make the situation worse.
Worrying about exams at uni comes with the territory for many students, but ignoring these feelings, or pretending you’re not stressed about exams when you are, will only add to your anxiety! Acknowledging your feelings of exam related stress is the first step in getting them under control.
Talk To Someone About How You’re Feeling
Talking can be a really easy way to relieve exam stress. Just taking 10 minutes to articulate your feelings to someone else can really help reduce stress levels, leaving you feeling more relaxed and calm about the whole situation. You might not think that just taking a couple of minutes to talk to someone will make any difference whatsoever, but talking is cathartic – it gives us a feeling of relief. In expressing your feelings of stress or anxiety out loud, you release some of those feelings and in turn have the opportunity to really ‘hear’ and deal with them.
If you don’t feel like you can talk to your housemates or friends, there are other services within the university and local community that can offer help in managing your stress (see point 7 in our post on dealing with homesickness for links to helpful services).
Plan & Organise Your Exam Revision
Planning and organising your revision may seem like a waste of time (time that could otherwise be spent ACTUALLY revising) but it really is time well spent. Producing a revision schedule with dedicated chunks of time for revising specific subjects, as well as planned breaks and leisure/de-stress periods, will really help you get on top of your stress levels.
Being able to see your revision broken down into small chunks is a lot easier to digest and manage, rather than visualising a huge mass of it in your head! There are plenty of online tools available to help you get yourself organised too, including this free study planner from Get Revising.
Find A Stress Reliever That Works For You
While we’re talking about building de-stress periods into your revision schedule, it’s important to make sure you find something that works for you (not everyone thinks going for a walk is relaxing!)
If you’re a gym nut, work that into your schedule; if you use books or film as an escape, make sure to use your de-stress time to read a few chapters or catch a movie; if you play an instrument or love your music, take the time to play a few bars or just chill with your favourite album. Whatever it is, make sure it’s something that works for YOU.
Just because it’s exam time, doesn’t mean you have to temporarily give up doing the things you love. Taking time out to do the things you enjoy is not only a great way to give your brain time to rest and digest information, it’ll also help you re-boot, relax and feel less stressed.
Make Sure You’re Getting Enough Sleep
This may seem like a fantasy land wish when you’re cramming for exams, but you need a certain amount of good quality sleep to function. In fact the National Sleep Foundation recommends between 7-9 hours sleep as the ideal amount for young adults (aged 18-24). If you’re tired you won’t perform at your best either, so it’s really important to make sure you’re getting enough shut eye during exam time.
If you’re having trouble getting to sleep or find yourself waking up regularly, try some calming relaxation or mindfulness before bedtime. Also, try not to overdose on caffeine – it’s no substitute for good quality sleep and too much may be keeping you on edge and awake more than you realise.
Sharing a cosy home with your best friends is one way to ensure you keep your stress levels at a minimum during exam time.
Here at Andrew Chell we offer premier student homes with all-inclusive rent and a caring private landlord with a reputation for quality and service. With NO signing fee and NOTHING to pay until July, there’s no reason not to CALL to view 01509 552814!
Andrew Chell can be contacted as follows:
Phone: 07769 684800
Office: 66 Ashby Road, Loughborough LE11 3AE
Published 20th January 2016