So for most of us university students, exams are already underway or will be upon us by the end of the month.
This time of year can get a bit crazy for us, the pressure of exams approaches and creeps up on you out of nowhere and all of a sudden your mind is awashed with an anxiety that just won't let you be. As a result, we end up living in the library, fueling ourselves off endless coffees and energy drinks, working til 4 or 5 in the morning and forgetting what it looks like to live a normal daily schedule.
It's not too late to get on top of things. For those of you in need... I give you my last minute and exam-week guide for getting by without having a breakdown...
MY TOP 5 TIPS FOR DEALING WITH EXAM STRESS
#1 Organise what you have left of your revision time. A timetable is great for this and can help you to track and monitor your progress. You should aim to do at least 5 to 6 hours per day of revision during the exam period, and if possible to do more. Try to figure out when you are at your most productive peak and slot in to revise around those times.
#2 Avoid distractions - procrastination is inevitable but it's always best if you 'allow' for procrastination time within your day. Disconnect yourself from the internet for the time limit of your work, don't work in the library if you know it's just a social hub where all your friends will be, etc.
#3 Believe in yourself. This is key. If you know you have done the work to get the mark you deserve then you should have all faith in yourself. No one is perfect and you can only do the best that you can do.
#4 Avoid panic and placing exams out of perspective. A great tip for this is to practice mindfulness (you can view my previous blog post on this HERE) and to give yourself 'time out' where you can relax and rebuild your energy. Make sure you allow enough time for sleep too, eight hours as a minimum is essential for productive functioning.
#5 Eat well and avoid overloading on caffeine - Coffee, tea and energy drinks are all helpful in some respect but they should not become the staples of your diet. Incorporate healthy complex carbohydrates with iron-rich vegetables and good sources of protein in each meal. Eat reguarly and healthily to maintain motivation and brain power and to keep your physical and mental health working at its optimum. Be sure to keep yourself hydrated by drinking water throughout the day and if possible try to get 20 minutes of physical activity (it doesn't have to be a gym workout... a brisk walk home is fine!) into your day as well.