Ten ways to beat exam stress
CA exams can be pretty intense and stress can sometimes get the better of us. Whether you are studying for TC, TPS or TPE exams, here are 10 ways you can keep the stress at bay.
This is key. Rather than rushing headlong into your revision, take a step back and think about the most important areas are for each course. It’s important to prioritise and get to grips with filling in any weak areas or gaps in your overall knowledge.
2. Make a plan
Your studying will be much more efficient if you make a plan. There is a lot of material to get through for your CA exams, so make a study plan on what you need to study and when.
Having a plan (and sticking to it!) helps you make sense of all the material. Aim to plan a weekly target, and then break this down into daily targets so that your work is broken down into more manageable chunks.
3. Mix it up
Don’t just stick to one method of learning the course material – try to change your approach every now and again to keep things fresh. Switch between reading your notes, doing practice questions, using CABLE and making short summaries of what you need to know.
4. Talk about it
If you are feeling stressed, it’s important to get support. Talk to other people on your course and you’ll find that they are probably feeling the same as you. Your tutor team are also on hand to help you. Don’t be afraid to drop them an email or pick up the phone to talk about anything you don’t understand or feel unsure about.
5. Take a break
No-one is asking you to study every hour of the day – that simply isn’t productive or healthy. It’s important to work hard, but also to give your mind a bit of a break so you can come back feeling ready to go. Getting some fresh air and exercise, or catching up with friends are great ways to relieve stress.
6. Stay positive
Having the right mindset can go a long way towards tackling stressful thoughts and anxieties. Remember that getting stressed isn’t going to help you perform any better, and it can often make things worse. If you’ve worked hard and done all you can to prepare for the exams, try not to beat yourself up worrying about them too much.
7. Eat right
At the risk of sounding like a parent, it’s important to look after yourself - particularly when you are feeling under pressure. Taking care of yourself by eating properly helps your brain function at its best. Don’t drink too much caffeine and resist the temptation to eat junk food.
8. Get some sleep
This is especially important the night before an exam. Your brain loses cognitive power if you are feeling tired and sluggish. You may think that staying up and cramming right up to the last minute will help, however, you are more likely to remember what you’ve studied and to do well in your exam if you are refreshed and awake after a good night’s sleep.
9. Don’t be distracted
Keep a clear focus on your revision by keeping distractions to a minimum. It can be easy to procrastinate and put things off when you’ve got lots of work to do. If this sounds like you, it’s time to be tough on yourself! Social media such as Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter and Instagram can all be incredibly distracting, so limit the time you spend on them.
10. Don’t discuss the exam with others
After the exam is over, it can be tempting to go through it in detail with other students. Discussing what you did and didn’t do isn’t productive and can make you feel more stressed. Don’t dwell on it and move on.