So the weather is heating up, the end of year exams are approaching – like a fast moving train – and you feel like exploding into a million pieces. Maybe you are feeling the pressure build to a point where you have anxiety, trouble sleeping, or become more moody. Or perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed and simply unable to focus. You could be experiencing end of year stress. Study, exams, the FUTURE, your social life and the state of the world at large are all competing for space in your mind and it is simply too much!
Any or all of the above is completely normal. End of year stress is a real phenomenon that this year, thanks to COVID-19, will be amplified for many students. It is important to remember you are not alone and put in place some coping mechanisms to help you get through this.
Tips for making it through end of year stress:
- Ramp up the self-care by getting back to basics and looking after yourself physically with healthy food choices, good sleep and relaxation/exercise routines.
- Organise your study space and build in study routines to stick to while also scheduling in some mini rewards for yourself when you achieve your study goals.
- Make sure your study time is distraction free – turn off your notifications or leave your phone in another room, switch off the TV and let your family/friends know you are not to be disturbed.
- Take the time to talk through your worries with a good listener be it a friend, mentor, parent or teacher. Just expressing your concerns out loud with others can bring you mental relief and guidance/support from those around you.
- Consider where possible freeing yourself of other commitments such as work, sport, or parties so you have more time for studying, sleeping and relaxing.
- Lay off the energy drinks, coffee or other stimulants as they are proven to increase agitation and decrease your ability to focus. Stick with water.
- Be prepared on exam day with any necessary equipment, water and by focusing on your breath if any panic sets in. Allow plenty of time to arrive at the exam location in an unhurried manner.
You will get through this! Be kind to yourself, apply the tips listed above and remember to breathe. Most importantly if any time you feel completely unable to cope do not be afraid to ask for help. There are many services that you can contact at any time to get assistance:
- Lifeline Phone 13 11 14 (24 hours, 7 days)
- Youth Beyond Blue Phone 1300 224 636 (24 hours, 7 days)
- Kids Helpline Phone 1800 551 800 (24 hours, 7 days)
Discover more great resources to help you through.
Reserve these books and collect from your local library:
- How to be a successful student: 20 study habits based on the science of learning by Richard E. Mayer.
- Study smarter, not harder by Kevin Paul
- Mindfulness for students: embracing now, looking to the future by Natasha Kaufman.
- Finding your path: a guide to life and happiness after school by Amba Brown.
- If you want to blitz your year 12 exams read this book by Alexandra Smith.
- Surviving year 12 by Dr Michael Carr-Gregg and Elly Robinson.
- You are awesome by Matthew Syed
- Getting things done for teens: take control of your life in a distracting world by David Allen, Mike Williams and Mark Wallace
- The 6 most important decisions you’ll ever make: a guide for teens by Sean Covey
- How to learn almost anything in 48 hours: Shortcuts and brain hacks for learning new skills fast
- Max your marks: Tips from top students on how to conquer Year 12 by Rowena Austin
- The stress reduction workbook for teens: mindfulness skills to help you deal with stress by Gina M. Biegel
- The social media workbook for teens: skills to help you balance screen time, manage stress and take charge of your life by Goali Saedi Bocci
- A teen’s guide to getting stuff done: discover your procrastination type, stop putting things off and reach your goal by Jennifer Shannon
- A still quiet place for teens: a mindfulness workbook to ease stress and difficult emotions by Amy Saltzman
Need help setting up your device for eBooks? Watch this video tutorial.
Listen to books on eAudiobook:
- Self-esteem for teenagers by Made for success
- The stress first aid kit by Tricia Brennan
- How to cope: the welcoming approach to life’s challenges by Claire Hayes
Listen on the go with these podcasts:
- The Daily Boost: a motivation podcast breaks away from traditional norms, fits perfectly into your life, and stands by your side as you pursue your dreams.
- Unstoppable teen: Kevin Mincher and his guests share ideas to help teenagers, parents and teachers experience more success and happiness.
- Study Skills Handbook Podcast: Podcasts about study skills! These podcasts cover the skills secondary students need to be successful at school.
Search for these free podcast titles and more via your preferred podcast provider.
Stream these great movies on Beamafilm:
On the web
Check out more info on the web
- Kids helpline: a great page on exam stress.
- Reachout.com: offer a list of 5 apps to help you study from screen time management, white noise, habit building to fitness.
- Headspace: have some great recommendations reducing stress and exam preparation.
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