Stress Less: College life (EXAMS)

Sorry for not uploading this week till now, it has just been a very busy week but hopefully I’ll be back on track with my blogging. Today’s post will be something away from Beauty and Fashion and instead about how to cope with stress in your life especially during your GCSEs and A levels. I will also be sharing my top 5 tips in coping with stress.

*Disclaimer: This is just my personal views and opinions about stress and personal experience of how I dealt with it in the past. Stress can vary person to person so do what’s best for you as well as take advice from experts if needed.

So what exactly is stress?

‘A state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances.’ – taken from google

There are many reasons for stress for example, it could be the high demand in college/uni/school or work, financial problems, family issues or even being too active and not giving yourself a break. For me personally, stress is sometimes mainly caused by college as I’m currently studying a-levels, which I will admit is very demanding.

With the Easter holidays coming up there is a great irony in the term ‘Easter holidays’, for most students like me, the three weeks off from school are far from a holiday. Exams are just around the corner which means it’s time for the dreaded long awaited revision.

This time a year ago, I was among the many year 11s sitting down at their desks faced with the task of creating a revision time table that I would actually stick to, something which many teachers would nag about because it was the beginning of what would be an extremely stressful 2 months of revision.

A year later, I’m still stuck with the same problem although, I technically don’t actually sit my levels this year, I’ll still have to sit exams that will determine my projected grade for university as well as my chances of making it through to year 13. However you could argue that by this point, any sixth form student is well prepared in the examination process.

Why?

Well you’ve passed your GCSEs; you’ve been the guinea pigs to countless structural and curricular changes; and you will also likely know what revision technique works for you. Yet there’s almost an added level of stress that seems to build around the already feared A-Levels, despite the fact that at GCSE you were probably taking more than twice as many exams.

Let’s be honest I’m 100% sure that majority of those sitting any exam this coming month has probably spent more time on calculating the amount of marks needed to achieve their target grades than revising (guilty charged). But what we all forget sometimes, is that in the end, the only way to do well in exams is not to stress and just relax a bit when revising – I know telling someone “not to worry about it” and to “stay calm” is perhaps the least helpful advice you can give to a student. If I had a penny every time it was repeatedly said to me by my friends, family and teachers I’d probably not have to worry about university tuition fees.

But let’s not forget that we surprisingly do need stress in our lives. It’s a natural response to challenging situations and a certain amount of stress is good for us. The battle for many is though, managing stress and not letting it get in your way. The best way to do this, is not to pour over your books and class notes every hour of the day available. It’s vital that you take time off, take a break and relax as much as it is practical in your revision time. Its all about having a balance between the two, easier said than done though, trust me I know!

Here are some ways to make sure you don’t stress too much in the months leading up to your exams:

  • Timetables and ‘to do’ lists are always helpful as it can keep you in control, so you can make sure you find time for friends, family as well as college/school work.
  • If you’re having a bad day, you can’t focus and just want to get away from revision – then get up and do something different. I always found going to the gym or for a run was an excellent way to let out stress and to take my mind off but even watching a show or film to regain your energy would help.
  • Getting enough sleep (something I will admit I struggle with as many of you will too) is vital. A good sleep will give your brain that rest and keep you refreshed to either carry on with revision or for your exam. I’d also suggest you take naps throughout the day too, to increase alertness and boost overall performance.
  • Take care of yourself – eat healthy and don’t miss meals (It’s essential to maintain a somewhat healthy lifestyle to keep you going through revision as well as to stabilise your mood.)
  • Finally just BREATHE it’s something so simple yet effective to just take a moment and give yourself a break. I personally love listening to music while taking a break when I just don’t want to do anything else.

Feel free to comment down below your own tips on how to deal with stress!

JAH1DA

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