How to avoid exam stress

By Ivan Smyth Nov 21, 2018


You should aim to get 8-9 hours’ sleep a night in order to be able to perform your best. The worst thing a student can do is to pull an all-nighter the day before the exam. A good night’s sleep will allow you to perform on the day and you will feel sharper physically and mentally.



Ensure you make time to relax. If you decide to draw up a schedule, allow yourself to take frequent breaks. This can help focus your study and provides you with the motivation to crack on with the work. You can get some exercise, walk the dog or talk to friends. In your downtime you should do something that gets you away from the books.


Get Organised

We all hate doing it but the best way to maximise your study is to draw up a revision timetable. Another important thing to do is to print out a copy of your exam timetable so you know where to go. This gives you one less thing to worry about on the day of the exam. Also, make sure you have a lift to college sorted in plenty of time. These small things can lead to unnecessary stress.


Talk to people

If you are finding the stress too much, make sure you talk to family and friends. They will help to provide perspective and ease your worries. Some people tend to lock themselves away and this is bad for your mental health. As the old saying goes ‘A problem shared is a problem halved.’


Take it easy with the Caffeine

The run up to exams can be tiring, both physically and mentally but try to avoid excessive caffeine intake. It can lead to increased anxiety and interfere with our ability to sleep and concentrate. The caffeine can provide a short burst of energy but be careful not to overdo it.



One of the most important things you can do during study is to get exercise. Whether it be going for a run, playing sport or simply taking a five minute walk, the benefits of exercise on your mental health is enormous. Too often, students stay inside, even during breaks and therefore the pressure builds. The time spent exercising will benefit you in your study and during the exam itself.


Think of the holidays

An important thing for students to do is to think about the end goal and remember that once the exams are finished, you can go and enjoy yourself without any worries. A good way of retaining focus is to plan something for the day you finish your last test. This will provide you with that little bit of extra motivation.


Tests are important, but they are not everything. Try and find a balance between study and downtime. Best of luck with the exams!!



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