With the ‘A’ Level examinations looming in a few months, feelings of anxiety are bound to arise. Even if reality has not sunk in yet and the pressure is not insurmountable, you know that sooner or later you will start to feel the effects of stress – that is, the need to stress-eat, irregular sleeping patterns, and severe irritability. Here are some ways to minimise these feelings and ensure you remain as calm as you possibly can.
That’s right – refrain from burning the midnight oil entirely if possible. Not only is sleep important to our health and well-being, it also helps our brains process information. A good night’s sleep helps us transfer knowledge from our short-term memory store to our long-term memory store, a definite plus point in our study journey.
You don’t have to be pursuing intense HIIT workouts or ramping up your exercise efforts (assuming you exercise on a regular basis). All you have to do is to do is get up out of your study desk and move. Even a slow, leisurely jog will enable your body to release endorphins, allowing you to concentrate and feel better.
On the weeks leading up to your ‘A’ Levels, the seemingly logical thing to do is to lock yourself up in your room and bury your nose in your books. However, going out and spending some time with your friends might help to take your mind off the anxiety. The secret lies in striking a balance between studying too hard and being unmotivated, and spending some relaxing time with your friends will help you strike that balance.
4. Watch Movies
We’re not telling you to indulge in one movie after another. However, watching a two-hour movie after a four-hour study session is a good way to enter a different realm and take your mind off your exams. It also makes a good reward after an intense study session, effectively serving as motivation for the next time you embark on a full-fledged study session.
5. Snack (Healthily)
Stress-eating does not have to be entirely bad – just ensure you do so mindfully! Refrain from potato chips and cookies that will do more harm than good. Instead, opt for healthier options such as nuts, grapes, and even carrot sticks. Dark chocolate is also a good snack option and helps to keep you awake due to its mild stimulant properties. When choosing a dark chocolate bar, choose one that has a cocoa content of 70 per cent or more!
6. Pick Up Whacky Tips
We’ve heard about the Naam Yoga Hand trick not too long ago. This is when you apply pressure to the space between your second and third knuckle (the joints at the base of your index and middle fingers). This activates a nerve that loosens the area around the heart, effectively helping to create a sense of instant calmness. If anything, let this trick create a placebo effect!
At the end of the day, the most important thing is to pace yourself during your study sessions. Be honest about the number of topics you can cover, set objective goals, and commit yourself to those goals. The ‘A’ Level examinations will come and go – right now, let the end be your daily motivation!