Time to Panic… Or not?

Isabella Colatruglio

Whether you are ready or not, the test series is lurking around the corner along with its partner in crime… stress. And they’re ready to rock your boat!

Whilst stress is an absolute given in times like these, especially with a spoonful of COVID added to the mix, there are scores of practical methods that you can utilise to decrease your stress levels.

Whilst stress is not the same as anxiety, it does have similar effects. It causes physical effects such as muscle tension and insomnia, it takes away your ability to concentrate, decreases your marks, causes fatigue (rendering you unable to concentrate even more) and even shortens your life span! With this in mind, getting rid of stress is an absolute must.

Getting plenty of sleep is an obvious one. Teenagers need ten hours of sleep a day, but eight is still a sustainable amount.

Regardless of whether or not mornings are your cup of tea (or coffee), do not go to bed late!  Rather try to sleep early and wake up earlier the following morning if you need to study or finish work instead of staying up late. Going to bed too late will only cause you to fall asleep on your test paper, have a stiff neck and it definitely won’t improve your marks!

Whilst you may feel like time is not your friend, it is beneficial to get out in nature for at least twenty minutes a day. Try going for a brisk walk, or a slow one, if you prefer to stop and smell the flowers. And no, studying Life Sciences does not count as being one with nature!

Mindfulness is a necessity when it comes to stress. Before you begin your day, spend a few minutes inside your head and just breathe. There are plenty of techniques you can try: yoga, Pilates or even just a bit of stretching!

Instead of just studying the food groups, take them to heart (or stomach) by eating a hearty breakfast. You don’t need to go on some extreme weight-loss diet to be healthy. You need a suitable amount of food to fuel your body and try to eat less sugar.

Lastly, don’t forget to take breaks. Studying is important, but so is resting. Do something that makes you happy – call a friend, spend time with your pets or practise your hobby. You don’t need to do it for hours at a time, just take a short break, but remember to avoid social media… because that never ends well.

The test series is here, but don’t let it damage your well-being. Larries, you can do  this!

“It’s not stress that kills us, it is our reaction to it.” -Hans Selye