Stress Management tipsStress Management
How to relax the body
How to relax the mind
The crisis you might be experiencing might not be as bad as it seems. Firstly, forget what you 'could' or 'should' have done but didn't etc. You can't go back in time. Next, work out what you can control and what you cannot. You cannot control fire, flood, family issues, or health. You can try to work around them.
Use your subject teachers for the areas causing difficulty. Or to form a study group with peers. Your strengths might be their weaknesses. Swap ideas, and help each other. The advantage of this is you really get to find out what you really know, it might be more than you think.
Share your concerns with others, as soon as possible. Ideally this will be someone you can trust to listen to you sensitively. If they are slightly older, they are likely to reassure you that almost everyone feels a little uncertain at this time.
Work out how you can make the best of the available time left and plan differently for the future. If you haven't made a study timetable, do so now! If you've left it late, prioritise according to your exam timetable or weaker subjects.
Don't forget to build in time for breaks and leisure. Negotiate hard with family about the tasks or household chores you would usually have to do. See if you can double up or "IOU" until after the exams.
One of the few constants in life is change, whether it is you or the circumstances around you. How you manage that change begins to shape how your future unfolds. Good luck!
How to relax the body.
Advice from Dr. Katherine Hood:
"Many hours hunched over a desk can leave your body as stressed as your mind. So here are some tips to ensure you're physically (as well as mentally) fit for your exams.
It's common for tension to manifest itself in the body. When you're stressed your muscles tighten, particularly those around the shoulders, so here's a way to release the tension that can gather.
Find a quiet room where you won't be disturbed, lie on the floor and close your eyes. Breathe deeply in slowly through your nose to really fill your lungs. Hold your breath for a count of three then let the air out slowly through your mouth. Repeat this three times. When you breathe out imagine all the tension in your body flowing out with the air.
Next, work through the body and tighten the muscle groups one by one. Start at the feet and screw up your toes as hard as you can. Hold for a count of three and relax. Flex your ankles, hold for three and relax then clench the muscles in your calf and so on. Work on each group of muscles in turn all the way up to your shoulders.
When you have mastered the technique you can just focus on the muscles that are feeling tight. You can relax them anywhere; sitting on the sofa, at your desk or even on the bus, whenever you notice the tension starting to gather.
If you find it difficult to switch off your mind whilst relaxing, try using a relaxation tape. You can buy one or even better, make one yourself. Record a few of your favourite calming tracks and play them while you relax. Better still, record your voice giving the instructions to clench and release your muscles. That way you don't even have to think, you just follow the instructions.
For the finishing touch, light some aromatherapy candles in your room, or burn some incense sticks, but check with the others in your house first because the smell can really linger.
If all this sounds too 'new age' for you here's another suggestion to beat the body stress: get up from your chair, out of the house, meet some mates and play a hard game of football. Top it off with a long hot soak in the bath - mmmm perfect�.. ZZZZZZZ!"
How to relax the mind.
Advice from Dr. Katherine Hood:
"Revision - what a nightmare; too much work and too little time. Beat the stress. Plan your revision well in advance so you can be confident you'll get it all done in time. The exam dates won't change but here are some tips on how to make efficient use of the days you have left.
Write down all the subjects and topics you have to cover and work out how much time you want to spend on each. Allow extra time to tackle areas you find most difficult. It can be tempting to focus on easy subjects because they make you feel more knowledgeable but ultimately this won't help you pass all the exams, so concentrate on your weaknesses as well as strengths.
Cover the important topics as well as the fun ones. Look at past questions and ask your teacher which topics are most likely to come up in the exam and revise these ones first.
Most people concentrate better at a certain time of day. If you work better in the morning then tackle tricky or important subjects early and leave the easier ones for when you brain isn't functioning as well.
If you plan ahead there should be loads of time to take notes but don't spend hours reading around a subject until you've covered the basic information. If you have extra time at the end you can always read more. Remember, your first task is to pass the exam not show what a genius you are.
Work always takes longer than you think. Leave the odd 'spare' day in the timetable just in case a topic is a bit more difficult than you realised and leave plenty of time before the exam to review and condense your notes.
Everybody needs a break. Most people can only concentrate for about 45 minutes so give yourself 10 minute gaps every hour to get a drink or chat to a friend. If time allows, award yourself one day off a week to enjoy the better things in life like going to the cinema or playing football.
A problem shared is a problem halved - or so they say. Keep seeing your friends whilst revising as everybody gets worried about exams and sharing the experience can help take the pressure off. Don't get freaked out if they appear cool and confident, underneath they are probably as worried as you are. Be disciplined about getting back down to work, though - friends can also be a distraction.
When you've worked out your timetable - GET STARTED. Don't waste hours in limbo knowing you should be working but not actually doing any. You never know, you might actually enjoy revision once you begin. Exams are a great challenge - dare yourself to do as well as you can and show the examiners just how brilliant you really are."
Other Tips Pages
|Revision Tips:||GCSE English, GCSE Maths, GCSE Geography, GCSE Science, and Exam Revision Tips|
|Coursework Tips:||English (general), Higher and Standard Grade English, Maths and Science .|
|Other Tips:||Stress management and tele-tutoring.|