i have exams coming up, how do you stay calm during revision sessions and the exams themselves



Hello Deary, I hope your revision has been going well so far. I can understand that this must be a stressful time for you, but its important to remember that this is something that you can manage with the right approach and tools. Before you even open a book the first tip I would suggest is to be prepared. From revision through to sitting in that exam hall, preparation is key.  Making a revision timetable for example can give you organisation over your workload and help you feel more in control when revising for a number of topics over a relatively small amount of time. It can prevent that spiralling out of control feeling and can give structure you might normally find in school. Its important to be realistic with your timetabling, so make sure you work in regular breaks, as well as meals so you maximise your use of time.  Check out the guide about revision planning done by BBC bitesize, it even gives a free revision timetable template. http://www.bbc.co.uk/guides/zn3497h


Again preparation can help reduce the feelings of panic on exam day. Making sure you get a good nights sleep the night before, arriving early for the exam, having your pencil case and notes ready the night before and trying and eat a healthy breakfast can all set you up well for the day ahead and help you to to avoid facing unnecessary panic in the morning.


BBC Bitesize – Revision: timetables and planning


Revision: how to get your revision plan right, BBC Mind Set, GCSES, Nationals, Exams, Revision, stress




There is an old saying “all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy” and this can definitely apply to revision. Although its important to get as much revision in as possible, particularly when sitting multiple exams, it is also vital to take regular breaks. Allowing yourself downtime will help all that quality revision sink in for when you need it on exam day. Exersize is a great way to de-stress and allow your mind to have a break. Sports such as yoga can be really beneficial to your mental health and can help your mind and body relax. At the same time other activities such as running or cycling can also be very therapeutic. Make it enjoyable and exersize with friends if that is what you feel might help you. A kick around or a walk in the park with friends on a co-ordinated break from revision might be a nice idea. If sports aren’t your sort of thing, maybe just a cuppa with friends or a catch up with your latest programme might be more suited to you.


At this time its also important to look after yourself and your wellbeing. The foods that you eat for example can impact on your brain activity and whilst hydration is also very important. Even though Caffeine may seem the obvious choice to keep you focused on the warm summer afternoon, its not the best option in the long term, try replacing that can of coke or cuppa with a glass of water.


 See some of the tips from the NHS on healthy eating. https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/healthy-eating-for-teens/


Healthy eating for teens – NHS.UK


Find out why healthy eating is so important for teenagers. Get healthy diet tips, as well as advice on fad diets, weight worries and iron deficiency.


Sleep is also very important. A good nights sleep will help you to focus on revision and on the exams themselves. If you are finding sleep difficult, try to give yourself a few hours to relax in the evening before bed, avoid looking at devices when trying to get to sleep and try and stick to a routine. 


Sometimes it can help to talk about the panic or anxiety you might be feeling over exams and revision. Its not always helpful to talk to friends about revising as this can sometimes give rise to more panic, however talking to a neutral source such as mum or dad or even a teacher might help to put your mind at rest and get those worries off your chest. If you are still feeling panicked when exam day comes, this is a natural reaction and there are things you can do to calm yourself down. Don’t be afraid to do somethng as simple as closing your eyes and taking some long deep breaths before or during the exam. Focusing on this for a few moments can help clear your mind. The NHS website has some great tips on breathing exersizes below. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/stress-anxiety-depression/ways-relieve-stress/ 


Breathing exercise for stress – NHS.UK


Breathing exercise for stress. This calming breathing technique for stress, anxiety and panic takes just a few minutes and can be done anywhere.


If you are worried about experiencing a panic attack in the exam hall, you could take some things into the exam (although check with the teachers first) that will help to re-focus your senses and your thoughts. This could be anything from really minty gum to an ice cold bottle of water, even strong perfume on your sleeve could do the trick. There are lots of great tips for self help for anxiety and panic attacks on the Mind website, see the link below.https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/anxiety-and-panic-attacks/panic-attacks/#manage


Panic attacks | Mind, the mental health charity – help for …


Anxiety and panic attacks. Explains anxiety and panic attacks, including possible causes and how you can access treatment and support. Includes tips for helping yourself, and guidance for friends and family.


I hope these tips help and that you have success with your exams. Finally just remember to put things into perspective, that although exams are important they do not necessarily define who you will become and even if you don’t do as well as you want the world won’t come crashing down around you. 


Take care Wicid Nan