It can be incredibly daunting when the date for your first GCSE exam approaches; you are faced with the sudden realisation that failure could affect the things you want to do in the future. This can create a sense of desperation to do well, and with this desperation comes panic. Before you find yourself battling unnecessary worries, here are a few things to try at home that might help settle your nerves before your exams, and allow you to approach them with confidence:
Take care of yourself
In order for your brain to function properly, you need to eat well, get plenty of sleep and exercise regularly. Your body and mind will not cope with stress if you don’t take care of yourself properly, so rather than binge on junk food while studying, grab some fruit or nuts as a healthy snack instead. When you start to feel frazzled, go for a walk or a jog. Burning off a bit of energy will help relieve tension and leave you clear headed enough to continue studying.
Revise on the go
Rather than worry about making time to study, have some notes or flash cards readily available at all times. Make yourself revision aids that you can use at a moment’s notice- when you’re in the car, on the bus or walking to school. Repetitive phrases are a great option, because the repetition will help you retain more information, plus you can easily practice them anywhere.
Organise your study time
In order to maximise your chances of success, you’ll need to study as much as you can and create a workable, realistic schedule that fits around your other daily activities. Keep a schedule of when your exams are, and set yourself small study goals every day. Mix it up and study different topics each time. Not only will this ensure you have sufficient time to study various subjects, but the feeling of achievement you get from reaching your study goals will give you a massive confidence boost.
Talk to someone
The sudden rush of preparing and revising for exams can be all encompassing and overwhelming. With so much to do, there is also so much to worry about. Don’t suffer in silence if you feel like you’re struggling. Try talking to a friend, parent or teacher. Each will be able to offer an ear to listen if you need to vent some frustration, and will likely be able to offer advice on how to get you through the exam process. Seeking advice will feel like a weight lifted, and enable you to continue studying with a clear head.