So I have been studying for exams in the last couple of weeks. They are not written exams but it’s more practical exams where we have to do role play and answer some oral questions. Last week it was about diabetes but I needed to redo some of it as I had trouble drawing up the syringe. Usually I would have cried and given myself a hard time but because I have been doing these 6 tips lately it has helped to reframe my thoughts and to keep calm during an assessment.
I highly recommend to do meditation. It has changed my life. It has cleared my mind before an exam or assessment and has helped me to concentrate on my breathing, which helps with anxiety. It takes a while to get started though but like all things you just need to keep going at it and practice! Practice makes perfect. What I do for meditation is that as soon as I wake up, I go to the toilet and also turn off the lights as I sleep with the side table light on as I am afraid of the dark believe it or not at my age. I then do meditation in bed using an app called Calm. I really love this app as it has a lot of features, topics, and it’s very calming. They recommend to sit in a comfortable position but I like to lie in bed as it’s more comfortable for me and I can concentrate better but just remember not to fall asleep during meditation.
I love listening to Tamara Levitt as her voice is very soothing and she gives really good tips, especially with the daily meditation. I do daily meditation every morning and with each meditation there is a different topic. Today I learnt about tenderness and about being gentle with yourself. I really loved the quote that she used in this daily meditation, which I will post here for inspiration. You have to pay to use the Calm app but I really think it’s worth it. It takes time and practice to concentrate and to focus on breathing but the more you do it the better you become. Trust me!
After meditation, I do journalling. I really love journalling as it helps clears my mind. I sit by my front window in my comfortable chair surrounded by my plants and soaking in the morning sunshine (if there is any in the morning as right now it is winter). I then grab an A5 notebook, a pen and turn on Ambient Relaxation playlist on Spotify. It’s really calming and relaxing for journalling. You can use any notebook but I love getting mine from Typo as they have really cute designs and it’s cheap as sometimes you can get 3 for $10 or something crazy like that. I then start reflecting on meditation, doing affirmations, and visualising my goals in my journal and then I write down what I did for exercise and reading followed by scribing. It’s like I’m keeping a record on what I did.
I do 20 minutes of writing down what’s on my mind and reflecting on what I did yesterday. I also write down what I am going to do that day. I write down about my worries and then talk about how I can improve and then do gratitude towards the end. I even tell myself to have a lovely day and to keep smiling. It just boosts my mood and helps me get things off my chest. It’s great! It clears my mind before an exam or assessment and helps me keep calm as I remember my affirmations and helps me to remember to breathe as it’s in my goals for the day that I write down in my journal. I really love journalling and I highly recommend to do it in the morning.
I have been doing yoga religiously every day. Well, except when I have really bad pain from my Endometriosis or my Fibromyalgia then I don’t do any exercise. I give myself permission to take a break and I don’t put any pressure on myself to do it. I do Yoga when I feel like it and that’s okay.
I have been loving Yoga with Bird on Youtube. I highly recommend her for Yoga as she’s very calming and positive. She gives you plenty of options and tells you to embrace all the wiggles and shakes and don’t put pressure on yourself to do all the moves just do what is best for you. Her videos can be rushed towards the end and repetitive but I just choose what video I feel like doing that day and her routines are not very long, which is what I like about them they are about 5 – 15 minutes long with the latest one being 30 minutes but 15 minutes is enough for me. I take out my Yoga mat and do the routines in my living room with my apple TV. I like to close the blinds and turn on the heater whilst doing it during winter to give it the cozy atmosphere. You can use candles if you like to set the mood but I don’t as it gets distracting. I feel stronger and more energised afterwards and her evening routines are very relaxing. In most of her routines, she ends it with meditation so you feel relaxed and good afterwards, which helps with staying calm before an exam or assessment.
Practicing for an exam or assessment always helps with staying confident and calm as you know what you’re doing or know what you’re going to talk about. I don’t recommend practicing at the last minute like I do as my brain copes better that way but I do recommend to practice a few days or a couple of weeks before just to get confident at it. I have learnt to write down scripts before the practical exam so I know what I am going to say during the role play. As you practice you learn what’s the best way for you to study for your exam and to keep calm.
Breathe and take a break
Meditation helps with practicing breathing and it helps to breathe before or during the assessment. Sometimes I forget to breathe during my role play and I start to get muddled or anxious. When I get anxious, I just stop and tell myself to breathe and stay calm. If you’re waiting with friends before an assessment it helps to take a break from last minute preparation and to socialise with your friends to stay calm and help support each other. Also, always remember to take a break whilst studying! Reward yourself for studying.
I have really appreciated affirmation and it has helped me to keep calm before an assessment as I tell myself that I can do it and that I know what I am doing as I am smart. It helps with reframing negative thoughts and turning them into positive ones. I recommend to do affirmations every day and write them down in your journal. It doesn’t matter if it’s the same every day as it will help you to remember them. You can always change it up by adding on to it, which is what I do. You can do affirmations when you start to feel negative energy and it really helps to calm your mind. I always start with ‘I am…’ with each affirmation.
‘I am kind, caring, friendly, gentle and pleasant. I am strong. I am warrior. I am smart in my own way. I am beautiful on the inside on the outside. I deserve to be loved as I am loveable. I am worthy of love. I am good enough.’
You can use my affirmation or you can start writing down your own. Leave your affirmation in the comments if you don’t mind sharing to help support each other during this tough time.
Hope these tips will be useful for you. Good luck with your exam or assessments! YOU CAN DO IT! Keep calm and stay positive.
Love Nat xx