When you are revising for those exams it really can seem like there’s not enough time to get everything done. This can send you into a bit of a panic, which will affect your motivation and learning. So how do you make sure you keep your energy levels high without crumbling before the exams even arrive? Here are nine ways to get through the exam season without completely losing focus.
1. Get colourful
When you are struggling to remember dates or a certain equation, your coloured felt tip pens can really come in handy. Not only does it help the important parts stand out, but it can help with memory too. Those who have rainbow coloured notes are more likely to remember important information than those who wrote only in black.
2. Go big
Sitting at your desk revising can get a little monotonous after a while, so shake it up by using large pieces of paper to revise on. You can create flow charts, pictures, lists, mind maps, and even doodles, to help you remember things. It’s easier to picture these posters during exams than your notes, which will inevitably all blend into one.
3. Don’t procrastinate
Those who generally panic around exam time are those who feel they haven’t got enough time to study, so it’s important to get started. Make sure you have a clear revision plan, don’t stick to the topics you feel comfortable with and don’t just sit at your desk for hours on end. Most people can revise for around 45 minutes before they need to take a break.
4. Try the dolphin pose
This yoga technique is designed to clear you mind and help reduce anxiety. Yoga is a great way to de-stress during exam time but it might not work for everyone. Some people like to start revision session with a series of star jumps, whilst others like to get out of the house and go for a run or a swim. It doesn’t really matter what exercise you end up doing, but doing something is a great way to avoid getting stressed.
5. Eat bananas
It’s tempting to subsist on crisps and chocolate bars, but food such as oats and bananas, which have a slow-release of energy, can help you to power through those exams without feeling hungry. Vitamin C is said to boost performance, so munch on some blueberries and strawberries next time you feel peckish during revision.
You definitely don’t want to be yawning your way through revision or the exam. People perform better when they’ve had enough rest, so put the books away at a suitable hour and head to bed. If you’re struggling to sleep, take a warm bath or have a milky drink before bed. These techniques might have been similar to the ones your parents used when you were small, but they really do work!
7. Focus on you
Something that’s sure to send people in a spin before exams is hearing how much revision their friends have done. Try not to compare yourself to others, everyone learns in a different way and whilst you might think they know more about The Battle of Waterloo, there’s no telling what the questions are.
8. Ask for help
If you are worried that you don’t understand something, speak to your tutors. Exam time is also a great time to lean on family and friends. They can make you your favourite dinner, or make sure that you take the right breaks and get away from your textbooks.
9. Stay positive
If you believe in yourself then it makes the task seem a lot less scary, so it’s really important to stay positive. Think about all the things you’ve already learnt and revised rather than the ones to come, and at the end of each day remind yourself of three good things that happened that day – perhaps you finally got your head around quadratic equations or made some good notes on the Shakespeare play you are studying.
Exams are not meant to be easy, but they shouldn’t paralyse you with fear either. These ideas should help you focus on the important things: getting your revision done and staying happy and healthy. Some people don’t only panic about exams, but what’s going to happen after them. If you’re already thinking about your career, then learn about the great opportunities available at Enterprise including apprenticeships and the graduate management scheme.