Wednesday, January 28, 2009

How to be stressless at your exam

How can you be without stress at your exam. I mentioned that as one of the point how I aced my examweek, being calm. I think how to have no stress needs more words.

First we need the definition of stress at an exam. I think it is a sudden feeling that you do not know anything. You don't know anything, and you will not know anything in the whole exam.

So you must prevent that feeling, or overcome it.

How to prevent stress
  • Don't interfere in the discussion your classmates have just before the test. Every time, before an exam, my classmates will go like 'Do you know what that is, and that, and how do you do this.' You should NOT interfere, cause most of the times you won't get out of it. Your classmate doesn't know the answer, and you don't either. So you will get stressed, cause you don't know that, and you will not know anything!
  • Be prepared. You will not get the feeling you don't know anything, if you do know everything. There is no need for stress, if you know you can make the test good. If you prepared yourself with questions which are the same as the examquestions you will know what you can expect. No need for stress.
  • Have enough sleep. Like I said, you have to be prepared. You are not prepared to solve great math puzzles when you had 2 hours of sleep. Make sure you get enough sleep, drink a cup of coffee before the exam. Make sure you are awake, sharp and ready to rock at the test.
  • Get the vibe. This is one of the best things I did this examweek. Before the test, get the vibe, get into the flow of the exam. If you have math, make some sums right before the test, so you know you are ready. And at this last practice, don't make it too hard for yourself. Practise some sums that are a bit easier then you expect on the exam. You will have the feeling you can do it, and your brain is already adapted at those kind of questions!

With these tips, the chance you will get a 'stress-attack' is reduced. But, there is always a chance. I had some stress suddenly at an exam also. I needed a very good grade, and when I saw the first question, I didn't knew it. And I stressed big time. But when I read the question again, I found out that the question wasn't that hard at all.

How to overcome stress during an exam
  • Pull yourself together, immediatly. You can't allow yourself to come into the circle of stress. Cause if you are in it, it gets harder to recover. So you need to be quick with noticing you get stressy. And when you know you get stressy, breathe in through your nose, and out through the mouth. Just a regular zen-like exercise, which actually helps.
  • Read further. Every exam has a simple question. So if you got the feeling you don't know anything, read further and look for that question. Or any question, as long as you know it. Answer it and you will think to yourself 'not that hard at all'. And if you see the first question again, you will be more confidend.
  • Read better. I am the person who always reads too fast. I got better at it, and learned to read the questions better, but sometimes, I read too fast. So when I do it, I interpretate the question wrong and think I don't know it. That is crucial, cause I am close to get in the stress circle. So read better, make sure you get the question good. This is what saved me at an exam this week.
The key to a stressless exam is being prepared, and you have to have the 'read good' technique mastered. If those two factors come together, you won't have stress at the exams anymore!
How do YOU reduce, avoid stress at your exam?

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