Be positive and confident

Last Updated 11 March 2019, 04:53 IST

When March arrives, most students feel jittery of facing the exams. The vast portions, the lack of regular studies throughout the year and inability to commit oneself to tackle the portions in the short time available – all these lead to frayed nerves and anxiety.

However, students should not lose hope. With a planned approach and systematic study, one can still beat the exam season blues. There are three primary aspects that one needs to deal with and here’s how it can be done.

Academic preparation

Stick to a schedule. Do not study subjects at random. Allot a specific amount of time for each subject. Concentrate on only one subject at a time. Creating timetables is an ideal way to get down to purpose-oriented study in planned fashion.

If you have not been studying regularly throughout the year, then go for the low hanging fruit.

Handpicking those portions from each subject that has been repeatedly asked over the past years must be your numero uno strategy.

Do not cram. Do not try to learn every single bit printed in the textbooks or given as notes. This can lead to disappointment and end up demotivating you. Focus on key aspects. All textbooks summarise the lesson at the end of the chapter. Do not miss out on this.

Study during those times that work best for you. Most students are accustomed to getting a good night’s sleep. Others may be night owls. They like to stay up at night when external disturbances are minimal. Yet others love getting up early in the morning and sitting down to study. The cool mornings bring out the best in them and allow them to concentrate.

Comprehending the subject and practicing are a key to committing to memory. Repeat each portion you learn a minimum of three times before the exams. After you learn a problem, a concept or an answer, revisit it once over the next 24 hours. The next practice must be within the following seven days. A final revision can happen before the exam.

Sound mind and body

Health is an often-ignored fact as the exams draw near. Staying up late, missing meals, sleeplessness can all cause a severe strain on one’s health. Poor health can adversely affect your ability to concentrate and recall. To avoid a health upset, you need to drink lots of water and keep the body hydrated, avoid coffee and tea, avoid foods that induce sleep, avoid junk food rich in carbs and salt and munch on fruit and nuts instead.

Fix a time to go to bed and wake up in the morning. Make sure you get at least 6-7 hours of sound sleep. Do not cut down on sleep as exams draw near.

Stress and anxiety are common as the exams are approaching. While a fair bit of anxiety is good to keep the mind chugging, too much can lead to a breakdown.

Comparison with friends can be unhealthy. This habit causes stress and anxiety that can be easily avoided.
Calling up your friend every hour to find out her progress, visiting your close friend’s house 3-4 times a day to find
out where you stand vis-à-vis him – all these can be very distracting. Shun these habits. Forget the world, focus on your preparation. Have confidence in your efforts and avoid drawing comparisons.

Regulate social contact

Regulating your social life is important to help you get into a rhythm. Do not completely shun outside contact. Be in touch with a few select friends. This is necessary to help you relax and keep yourself abreast of news that might impact your studies. Stay away from gadgets. Enlist the help of your parents to lock away the devices if you are unable to control your digital addiction. The ‘Fear Of Missing Out’ (FOMO) is the main reason for the persistent craving for gadgets to catch up with the latest social media updates.

Discuss your goals and timetable with your parents so that they can shield you from distractions. Keeping your family in the loop about your plan clears the road of minor irritants that can ruin the satisfaction of a good day’s study.

Exam season can be intimidating. It can induce anxiety. However, by dividing the seemingly gargantuan task into smaller, achievable tasks, one can beat the exam season blues.

Remember that every big task seems impossible until it is done. Eventually, every small bit of effort adds up to fetch you the desired results. All the best for your exams!

(Published 06 March 2019, 18:36 IST)

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