Every examinee goes through a process regardless of the level you are examining for. This includes attending classes, handling assignments, submitting projects, revising and wrapping it all up with an exam.
The exam time, especially the final exam is the key determinant of the outcome of the whole process. You definitely need to tackle it the best way you can.
However, exam time tends to come with nervousness that can easily affect concentration and memory or even cause blank outs, stress among other negative feelings.
On top of perfect preparation, you need to ensure you are in your best form in the exam room. Here below are four tips on how you can relax when handling an exam.
1. Listen to relaxing music
Different forms of music are known to spark different emotions in humans. Slow and relaxing music is especially good at reducing nervousness, depression, anxiety, and stress. This is because it works well in slowing the heart rate, depressing stress hormones and lowering the blood pressure.
To lower your nervousness when you have to enter an exam, you can listen to some relaxing music the night before.
Some examinations are really long requiring you to be in the exam room for hours on end. For instance, the USMLE-Step 2-CK is a multiple-choice exam for medical students that goes for nine long hours.
You need to find peace and calm to get through such an exam. Some relaxing music is a sure bet in such a case.
2. Get sufficient sleep
You might think ditching sleep to study for more hours would be helpful. The fact is, it is actually bad for both your health and moods. Lack of sufficient sleep might lead to a constant migraine, a hangover, or dozing off the following day.
I bet that is the very last thing you need for such a time.
A proper good night’s rest means you are able to totally relax your mind and body. Definitely, you can comfortably handle new challenges without being overwhelmed.
However, it is very important you take caution not to oversleep. It would also not do you any good to arrive in the exam room running against time.
You will not only get all sweaty and tired, but you might also get confused and mess up your memory.
It is perfect if you are already settled some minutes before the actual exam time.
3. Mind your diet
Be keen on the food you eat for dinner and breakfast just before handling an exam. Diet influences how a brain works in handling stress.
For instance, taking sugary drinks or too oily foods can end up crashing off your memory, on top of causing heartburns that could make you uncomfortable. Ensure that you take well-balanced meals.
In addition, ensure that it is not too heavy or too light for you. Taking a very heavy breakfast might cause stomach upset or make you feel sleepy.
On the other hand, a very light breakfast might make you feel hungry especially if you are handling a long-hour-exam.
Most importantly, make sure you drink sufficient water all through. If allowed, bring in a bottle of water in the exam room. Drinking a lot of water will help keep you hydrated, which is helpful to keep you energized.
4. Prepare thoroughly
Undoubtedly, tests are meant to challenge you. If you were to excel, then you have to put in enough effort to ensure it. Ensure you go through your notes and revise in-depth. If you are sure that you have studied well, the chances of feeling nervous are minimized.
Apart from studying, you need to prepare for all the items you will need for your exam. Different exams have different requirements.
For example, you might be required to bring a scientific calculator to an exam with questions involving calculations.
It is absolutely necessary to bring your own things and not depend on borrowing from your neighbor.
In case you need reading glasses for better reading, ensure you don’t leave them behind to avoid straining your eyes.
How you view the exam matters a lot. If you see it as an impossible task for you, then that is how it will be for you. Exams are just a portion of what you have learned.
It shouldn’t be too much of a big deal to you to a point of breaking down. The secret is to keep a positive mind, relax, and give it your best. Hopefully, the above points help you relax and stay calm in your exam.