Although you may know the materials, and even though you have read all hints and tips in this book, one factor may still interfere with your ability to successfully function on an exam day: exam stress. The best way to alleviate exam stress is to first recognize your symptoms and gain an understanding that the possible reason for subpar test performance is not lack of intelligence or knowledge but is directly related to the stress you feel before and during
You may recognize exam stress by the jittery feeling you get in the pit of your stomach. Although it may sound like a cliché, your palms may begin to sweat, or your mouth may suddenly become dry. The worst symptom of all could be the sudden blank you draw when trying to answer questions that you could answer almost automatically when studying with your study buddy. Many times after leaving a test and relaxing a bit, you remember the answers to the question or questions that stumped you the most.
Some symptoms of stress include:
• An increased heart rate
• Rapid breathing
• Headaches and stomachaches
• Chest pains
• Alcohol and drug abuse
Do any of these symptoms sound familiar? If you experience these symptoms on test day, then you may be suffering from exam stress.
Are you Stressed?
Now that you have had exam stress explained to you and the symptoms have been pointed out, you can decide about the level of exam stress you may be experiencing. It is common for all test takers to feel a little nervous on test day, but suffering from test stress is a more severe form of the usual jitters. If you think of test stress, you can unburden yourself of this stress by ensuring that you are healthy mentally and physically.
What is a Healthy Mind?
Being mentally healthy, in this case, does not refer to your growing intellect but more about your emotional health. Surrounding yourself with positive influences will undoubtedly create a mentally healthy you, leading to a healthier and more positive outlook on your everyday life, including that dreaded CAT and GMAT exams!
How to keep my Mind Healthy?
It may be a problematic fact to admit to yourself, but your peer group may be holding you back from performing your best academically. Think of your core group of friends and classmates. Do they share your yearning to do their best in school? Are they supportive of your efforts to study and do well on tests? Unfortunately, some students become disengaged from the whole learning experience and actually belittle those around them who strive to do well. On the other hand, surrounding yourself with positive peer influences will provide you with the support necessary to make you feel good about your study efforts.
Pay careful attention to your anxiety level throughout the college week and on the weekends. What activities tend to relax you? If, for example, you find that playing basketball or practicing yoga helps you de-stress, be sure to schedule a practice session the morning or night before your CAT or GMAT test. By the same token, take note of the activities that make you anxious, and avoid them when you have these exams.
What is a Healthy Body?
You may think of test-taking as an exercise of the brain, but, in reality, your physical health may also play a role in your ability to perform well academically. Many factors can affect your health and, therefore, your academic success.
How to keep my Body Healthy?
During the college and initial job years, most of you become ever more conscious of your bodies and physiques. Unfortunately, this attention to looks and build sometimes leads to unhealthy eating habits if you become obsessed with maintaining a look that you consider to be most desirable. These unhealthy habits deprive the body of the nutrients necessary to grow, heal, and, yes, think. Try to be careful with your diet, and maintain a healthy balance between junk food and the healthy food that contains the nutrients your body needs.