The Secret To Beating Exam Stress

ncs 25/04/2018

Now we say secret, but the answer probably won’t surprise you. If the pressure of revision and exams on the horizon gets too much for you or someone you know - just step back, take a breath, and relax. How long is up to you, but five minutes away from the books can be just as important as an hour if you actually manage to lose some of that stress.

So with everyone else likely throwing revision tips your way, we wanted to remind you not to feel guilty about making time to relax and have fun. And if you’re wondering how here are five good places to start.

Channel your music
Before jumping straight to your 
favourite playlist, whatever you listen to can easily change your mood. Like if you’re struggling to concentrate, try some songs without lyrics as following those words can be a big distraction. Or if you’re feeling glum, make pop music and feel a much needed happy boost! Or if you’re feeling fried, slower tempos will help de-stress you in a matter of minutes. Worth checking out what playlists Spotify has to offer!

Step outside
It doesn’t have to be for a whole afternoon (unless you earned it, in which case go you!) but a bit of fresh air and exercise can help take your mind off any stresses you’ve built up. Walking, cycling, swimming, football, dancing - it’s all effective! And strangely enough, the great outdoors can even boost your energy levels and help you concentrate too.

Eating’s not cheating
When you’re deep into a study session and you think about skipping tea just to get another half hour in - not such a good idea. Your brain needs food to keep ticking over and it sounds like you could do with a break too! Also as tempting as it is to sneak a snack, eating healthy will help you focus more (sweets will put you into a slump!).

Sleep before study
Fact - a good night’s sleep is always better than last-minute cramming. It’ll help 
organise your memories and help you recall what you just learnt the day before. So instead of squeezing in the knowledge, try doing something you really enjoy to switch off for an hour before bed. Then you’ll drift off not thinking about what tomorrow will bring and feel 100% for that test.

If in doubt, meditate on it
We’re not kidding! This little exercise can help you let go of any worries and leave you feeling relaxed.

●      Sit back and close your eyes

●      Focus on slowly breathing in and out

●      If your mind wanders, bring it back to your breathing

●      Repeat for a few minutes and feel like a new you (or a less stressed you anyway)


Exams can feel like the end of the world but they really aren’t. If you’re ever feeling the pressure, make sure to talk to your friends, parents or even a teacher about it. You’d be surprised how much better it feels to share what you’re going through.

Good luck!