Conquer Exam Anxiety: Strategies to Reduce Stress and Improve Performance |

Feb 10, 2024



Exam anxiety can result in a range of physical, emotional, and cognitive indicators. Physical indicators may include perspiration, sweaty palms, headaches, and muscle tightness, while emotional indicators can manifest as guilt, anger, excessive study, or poor nutrition. Cognitive indicators may involve negative self-talk, excessive worry, and difficulty concentrating or retrieving key information. Things that can increase exam anxiety include insufficient exam preparation, worrying about past or present performance, and the use of stimulants like caffeine. If the anxiety is severe or persistent, seeking the help of a psychiatrist may be beneficial.
To reduce exam anxiety, it’s important to establish effective study habits, practice stress reduction techniques, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. This can be achieved through studying in advance, practicing relaxation methods, balancing sleep and eating, and setting realistic study goals.

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On the day of the exam, adequate sleep, a healthy breakfast, and minimizing caffeine intake are essential. It’s also important to engage in relaxing activities before the exam, avoid last-minute cramming, and stay away from distractions that can increase anxiety. During the exam, organizing yourself, tackling exam questions systematically, and using calming distractions can help manage anxiety and improve performance.
If anxiety begins to interfere with exam performance, slowing down, using relaxation and visualization methods, and focusing on calming distractions can be beneficial. This may include controlled breathing, performing calming actions, or using affirmative self-talk to regain composure and concentration.
(Author: Dr.Samant Darshi, Consultant psychiatrist -Psymate Healthcare and Yatharth Super Speciality Hospitals)



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