Tag Archives: Exams

Exams – How to Stop Stressing and Recall the Answers Faster!

20 May

Guest Blogger Profile: Maggie Lawrie is the author of audiobooks with mind programming relaxations to help you de stress and achieve your goals. 

About this time of year at least one of my CEO coaching clients will ask me to see their son or daughter who is stressing out over their exams. They are usually very bright children who have studied hard all year and are now tying themselves in knots over actually sitting in the exam room taking the exam.

Some feelings of anxiety are normal but you’re feeling totally overwhelmed by a collection of thoughts which include ‘What if…I don’t pass and don’t get into Uni/College/The Job I want’ or ‘My mind went blank once before in an exam, what if it happens again?’ and ‘What if I can’t think of the answers?’  There are more but these are the top ones I’ve noticed going round in people’s heads. The symptoms of these thoughts can manifest themselves as a shaking and panic, not sleeping and feeling ill.

The following tips work very well to reduce the stress and help hugely with focussing simply on the exam and best of all you can do them at home.  If you have or know anyone who has a child who is stressing out over their exams please let them know these really do work.

1. Just as they have been disciplined in learning their chosen subjects, they need to be disciplined now in controlling the thoughts around ‘not passing’. What happens is a negative thought comes in and is allowed too much ‘airtime’ in the mind. It gathers momentum like a snowball rolling down a steep hill and is harder to stop as it gets bigger. So, STOP the thought in the very beginning of its journey by SWITCHING tracks. Think of a memory that is happy one, think of a previous success like winning a race, or an award or anything that you’re proud of achieving. Write these memories down and look at them in the first moment the negative thought pops up.

2. Resist the temptation to call a friend and discuss ‘not passing’. Go for a walk instead. As you walk, bring your attention to everything around you. Really notice the colours and sounds, feel the surface that you’re walking on. As you really focus on the scenery your mind becomes clearer and clearer.

3. Here’s a really easy one you can do before and during the exam: Put your hands on the top of your rib cage, breathe into that area to the count of 5, hold it for 5, breathe out for 5 and SMILE. You may notice your shoulders will drop, and the mind becomes much clearer.

4. As it gets closer to your exams, practise thinking of them as one step. You may have previously thought about what comes after the exams but for now leave those thoughts alone. Now is the time to have your study plan, practise breathing calmly and focus only on the next step. ‘Thinking’ is a powerful tool, you might as well use it wisely!

The truth is everything you learnt is still in your mind but negative thoughts that pop in are in the way of you seeing it. When you relax the mind, stop all thoughts it will come up to the surface as clear as when you were in the classroom learning it. The mind is an amazing tool, the power of it is immense and it hasn’t forgotten what you spent all those hours studying. So take a deep breath, relax and allow the answers to float up to the surface.

You can buy ‘The Secret Guide to Relaxing and Banishing Stress Forever‘ by Maggie Lawrie from AudioGO.