Right from the waking moment of Sunday morning you fear the upcoming events; it’s midterm week. Although it’s Church day, you’ve never felt more disconnected from god than on this dreadful day of anticipated suffrage. Inside, you just want to say “Fuck it,” become a drop out, and work your life away in a low to minimum wage job, but somehow, someway, you get off your ass and get your moneys worth of education.
I’ve discovered that staying up all night is the worst possible decision known to student-kind. Despite waking up with an irritable sense to face wash anyone that looks or speaks to you, sleep deprivation tends to significantly alter your memory bank. Just before a test, when you’re confident in your knowledge, all the information stored in that subject-specific savings account suddenly gets wiped. You have no explanation, but you’re pissed off because nothing can be recalled. What do you do? What can you do!
Test Anxiety is the nuisance that turns four years of school into eight. It’s also the biggest contributing factor to financial stress. Unfortunately, many students are diagnosed with test anxiety during the first few years of post-secondary school. I was one of lucky ones to receive such a gift. For those who are fortunate and have no problem with tests, good on you! For those like me, I’m here to suffer with you against this ceaseless, goal-stopping antagonist. There are several ways to treat this conflict: you can bargain, accept the facts, or most commonly, cry about it. Proven fact, crying during a test results in insufficient progress. I mean at least you can express your feelings well. Usually it feels impossible to succeed, but when it comes down to it, you’re just over reacting, and all that’s needed is a deep breath; a calm relaxing recall back to reality. Panicking is not recommended, but how do you NOT panic when everyone appears to be having no issues whatsoever with the test? From my experience I am 100% guilty of this “peer anxiety.” It’s the idea that everyone around you is doing well and for some reason you can’t even do the first question. It also doesn’t help when you hear the vigorous flipping of pages. This states that the test isn’t hard and everyone is flying through it. You find yourself destroying any forms of motivation which sparks a raging fire of uncertainty. This is usually when a unknown outer force from the dimension of “OMG I’m panicking” comes and punches you right in the gut. Afterwards, it grasps your stomach and rotates it like a dial to turn up the stress levels throughout your body. You become brick: everything tenses up. You can’t move or think and all numbers and letters start to have absolutely no meaning. The decoder for basic language: vanished, nothing is understandable. For some reason you make a bold and unforgiving decision to check the time. Did it help? Unlikely. Whatever your stress was at, it’s at least a trillion times worse because pressure, by the clock, is constantly compiling anxiety. What do you do? It’s to late, you have no choice but to accept that potential 50%. Although that test didn’t go as well as planned, try for the next one! It’s so difficult to figure out what might help you through that agonizing test, but its different for everyone. You can try copious amounts of relaxing drugs; hit the bong before your test, or maybe try doing do hardcore jumping jacks just before you write. Honestly finding the resolution for this problem is not easy, impossible even. For me, I just try to think of my happy place, (usually about lunch) and whether is takes me ten or thirty minutes to pull myself together, I’d rather be happy than experiencing unconditional episodes of test paralysis. So for your next test, maybe try dwelling on what food you’re craving, who knows, maybe food is the key to your knowledge bank too?