Education & Learning

Exams Got You Freaked Out? Tips to Reduce Test Anxiety

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Who hasn’t clammed up before taking a test? There’s something about having your knowledge assessed that can freak you out – even if you feel that you’ve prepared for it. It’s only natural for your palms to sweat, your heart rate to rise, and your stomach to feel like it’s in knots. However, when you’re feeling this way to the point that you can’t function or even begin to take the exam, this could mean you are struggling with test anxiety.

What’s Test Anxiety?

Test anxiety is a fear response to taking tests. It can manifest in many different ways but typically one might experience a rapid heartbeat, sweating, stomach problems, headaches, lack of concentration, panic, nausea, and vomiting. The fear can be so debilitating that it hinders a person from completing the exam to their fullest abilities. If not corrected, it can impact your educational or professional career.

How to Overcome Test Anxiety

Do you get so worried before a test that you psych yourself out? Are your grades or test results suffering because of it? Do you experience the physical or mental symptoms of anxiety? If so, these tips are sure to help you find some relief.

  • Deep Breaths and Happy Thoughts – Your body is in flight or fight mode as a result of you dreading over your test. To calm down you should take a few deep breaths and as you exhale, try to think of happy and positive thoughts. Think about acing the test instead of all the ways it could go wrong.
  • Eat Well – Taking a test on an empty stomach, wired on caffeine, or with a belly full of junk can make things worse. It drains your body of energy and deprives it of the nutrients and vitamins it needs to function properly. Eat a well-balanced meal prior to taking a test.
  • Try an Edible – When you think edible it is important to realize there’s a difference between those infused with THC and CBD (both chemicals found in the marijuana and hemp plant). THC edibles or marijuana treats are not advised to relieve test anxiety. The THC can get you high and is illegal in many educational facilities and places of employment. CBD edibles, on the other hand, will not get you high and can be great for relieving your test anxiety. If you’re wondering can cbd improve my focus, you should know that it can. As it naturally helps the brain to produce more serotonin, your anxiety symptoms subside allowing you to focus on mastering the exam. What’s also great is that if you happened to be drinking a bit too much the night before fretting over the upcoming test, edibles or supplements can also serve as a hangover cure with cbd.
  • Study in Advance – Most exams aren’t a surprise (unless it’s a pop quiz). You’re told in advance when it will be and what materials you’ll need to review to pass. Don’t wait until the last minute to study as procrastination and cramming can increase your anxiousness. Set aside an hour or so per day to focus on your studies so you can retain more information and increase your chances of passing.
  • Ask for Additional Help – If you’re getting all worked up about an exam or assessment because you don’t feel confident in your knowledge on the subject matter, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Ask your professor or employer to provide you with study guides, tips, and advice on how to pass. You can also find a wealth of educational resources online that can help you with just about any topic you need.

No one likes to be tested, but it’s a necessary “evil”. Exams, assessments, and tests are essential to the learning processes. They help educators and employers to get a clear understanding of your knowledge on a particular subject. This information can then be used to enhance your learning experience so that you can excel. Though it’s natural to get a bit anxious about a test, if these symptoms don’t subside or prevent you from doing your best, you should take strides to reduce these fears.