“Examination is a nightmare”! I can almost hear most students mutter this silently in their hearts. And I can say it without hesitation that examination is the student’s greatest nightmare! So many students are simply afraid of exams for no just cause. And yet they want to make progress from their current level and get to the next and eventually leave school. What they fail to realize is that there can be no promotion without examination!
No matter how scary students may make examination seem, the fact still remains that examination is not the student’s foe! Contrarily, examination is the student’s ally! Yes! It is usually through examination that we get to know the stuff you are made of as a student. It is through exams that geniuses are uncovered and celebrated.
In fact, like I fondly say: the exam period is the student’s birthday. It is a time when the student is given all available opportunities to prove himself or herself academically. During classes, lecturers and teachers keeping dazzling and thrilling us with how much they know in their course and students just sit and watch in awe and wonder. But the examination period is the student’s turn! It is your own time to really ‘show’ how much you know! Are you beginning to see it from the real perspective now?
In the course of my coaching programmes in schools, I have found out that most students who fear and dread exams do so for just one reason: they are not prepared! The truth is that behind every fear is the sense of inadequacy and incapability, and this is true also to exam-phobia. Have you noticed that the best students in your class long for exams and usually get excited when it finally approaches? Exams become exasperating only when students sell their academic birthright to laziness, procrastination and distractions! Students begin to shy away from exams when they have not truly been students and have done their job!
In case you are already in this kind of situation and you are wishing and wondering how to escape from its choking claws, get up and do these:
1. Change your mind! As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he Pro 23:7. Your thinking conditions your actions and produces your results. What you think determines what you take out of life. What you see when you look at exams will determine how you will take the exam. Change the way you see exams and watch your fears about exams fizzles away! Think right. See exams from the student’s perspective. While the ring is the worst thing that happened to the loser, it is the best thing that will ever happen to the victor. Become the victor! Approach your exams with the right mindset.
2. Set out on time to prepare for exams before it approaches. The man who succeeds above his fellows is the one who early in life clearly discovers his object and towards that object habitually directs his powers. This is also true about the best students everywhere. They usually set out on time to prepare. They do now what others will do later. They prepare today what others will postpone till tomorrow. When you don’t prepare for your exams, you lose your confidence and open the door for fear and tension. Kill this fear by preparing very well before the exam comes. Preparation comes with it boldness and confidence to face any challenge. Like they usually say, proper planning and preparations prevent poor performance.
3. You should know that ideally, teachers do not set questions outside from what they have taught. This should give you enough confidence in yourself and drown your fears. So you don’t have to fear what you know and have been taught. Just study it enough to remember it and your worries will be over. They will not manufacture the questions from the sky.
4. Be optimistic. Trying can do anything in the world, if you determine to try more and harder. Being pessimistic does not pay. It will only increase your fears and drown your energy for success. Confront the exam with a positive and determined heart. You are not the first to take that exam neither will you be the last. If others have written it and succeeded, you too will. Tell yourself that you have the capacity to face the exam and come out with success. Do not doubt yourself. That is only self set up! Like Henry Ford would always tell me, “either you think you can or you can’t, you are right.”
5. Come early for the exams and settle down properly before the exam starts. One of my findings thus far as coach and mentor students for academic greatness is that exam fear and tension has something to do with lateness; either practically or realistically, or even both. Practically: as when you come late to the exam venue. This immediately ushers you into the nervous room and unleashes tension all over you. Realistically: as when you come late in your studies by not covering up the topics before the exam. Either way, you have signed up for exam tension. So avoid lateness of all sorts. Come to the exam venue on time and make sure you come prepared too!
6. Don’t just conclude on yourself too early. That you failed before or that you were a victim of exam tension does not make it your ultimate fate. You can overcome it. You can rise above it and take advantage of it instead to prove yourself this time. Avoid negative, pessimistic information and advice. Do well to also avoid those who retail such cheap information. A lot of students are just afraid of nothing. Someone comes and spoils their minds about a particular lecturer or course and they simply believe without caring to confirm the facts. No wonder assumptions lead to deception!
P.S: I have used these principles on students and they have always produced the needed results. I am sincerely sure that after applying these steps, exam tension will become a fairy tale to your academics. Why not give them a try? Or do you want some more and want me to get personal with your peculiar academic challenges? Then give me a ‘shout’…
Do you think I have not captured all the nuggets and principles that can help one to practically overcome exam tension? Then shoot it in the comment box below…
Yours truly motivational,
The Academic Coach.