9 March 2015

Exam Series: Dealing with Stress

So, it's that time of the year again; the dreaded exam season! I don't know about you, but this is one of the worst seasons for me; it's extremely stressful and everything seems to get me down. I'm sitting my A-Levels this year and the pressure to get the grades to be accepted into University is pretty intense. I thought, to help other people, I'd start a little set of blog posts which I'm going to call 'exam season' and I'll talk about different topics to do with exams. This week, I'm going to be talking about dealing with exam stress. 

As I've previously said, exam season is one of the most stressful times of any students life. There is so much pressure to do well and get certain grades and the stress of work can really get you down. I'm not sure what it's like at any other schools, but at my college teachers are never aware that you have more subjects to study for than just their subject. We get so many deadlines for coursework and essays as well as being expected to have a social life and get enough rest. I think the key idea is to be able to balance your exam work and revision with your social life. Here are my top tips for dealing with exam stress. 

  1. Set realistic deadlines
    I cannot stress the importance of this. When I was sitting my GCSES, I set myself completely unrealistic deadlines. Instead of doing an hour of revision for a subject each day, I'd try to cram in 3 hours of biology revision and then 2 hours of maths revision and then another hour of chemistry without even having a break. It got so ridiculous that I was getting around one hour of sleep each night, which is never a good thing. So make sure you don't push yourself too hard, because there's no way you're going to pass if you just try to cram loads of knowledge into your brain; revision doesn't work that way

  2. Take regular breaks
    Instead of trying to cram everything into one massive revision session, take regular breaks. Check twitter for a while or even go read some of your favourite blogs.

  3. Don't stop doing the things you love
    I cannot stress the importance of this point. Please, whatever you do, do not quit your acting class or your football training because revision is getting in the way. Have at least one night a week where you go and do something you enjoy, go and hang out with your friends or chill in your room with a book. It's the best thing because when you come back to revise, your brain feels really refreshed and lovely.

  4. Sleep!
    Now, I'm not saying hibernate until the day of your exam and realise that you probably should have done some revision but even though you have so much work to do, make sure you have enough sleep. If you're tired when you're trying to revise, your brain isn't going to remember things, it's just going to focus on the fact that you need to rest. now that I'm studying for my exams, I set myself a 'work until' time. Normally, I work until 8pm and then I stop and relax until I go to bed.

  5. Eat right and Drink plenty
    Make sure that you're keeping yourself hydrated and eating regularly. If you want some brain food, eat a banana, surprisingly it actually works!

  6. Don't compare yourself to other people
    So what if your best friend got an A* in that exam and you only got a B?! We all progress at different rates, and just remember, if you're sat there revising your butt off, then you're way ahead of those who aren't even trying.

  7. Try your best
    As cliché as it sounds, all you need to do is try your best and not worry about the exam once it's done. There's no point, I mean, you can't exactly go back and change it can you? If you know that you've done all of the revision you can and you've tried your best then there's no more too it, just don't stress about it until results day!

  8. Anxiety and Stress is completely normal
    It's completely normal to have nerves and stress during the revision and exam period. There's no need to feel weird or embarrassed, I bet there are plenty of other people in your shoes too!

    I hope this helped some of you! Tell me what you think of this little thing I'm doing in the comments below!
    Lots of love,
    Meg x
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