Experience at IMOTC, 2015

Tips on Mindfulness to Prepare Students for Exam

As the exam season begins to near, the stress level among children starts to gain its peak. Children are analyzed on the basis of tests conducted in their respective schools, the thought of which puts an adverse effect on their well-being.

Although schools do their best in modulating the examination system of children as young as 5 years old, by putting them at ease in various creative ways, like playing games, telling stories, etc. But as they grow up and get promoted to higher standards, there is no moderation in testing rules at the schools.

Despite these efforts made by the schools so that the students have the skills to be successful, the anxiety of tests makes them to react in a way that disrupts their ability to perform what they know.

The use of Mindfulness can help the students to stay calm. It lets them to perform best to their ability in the exam by encouraging them to focus on the preparation and eliminating the stress levels. The stress levels can be massive while preparing for exams like UPSC, CAT, IES etc. Hence, here are some of the useful tips to practice mindfulness before the exam begins.

  • Breathing exercise- Teach them slow and deep breathing techniques by exhaling for longer time than inhaling. The breathing exercise gives calming effect on the nervous system and reduces the stress level among students. This allows them to believe that they can do well in their exams.
  • Body posture – The students should be made aware of their posture every now and then. This puts a great impact on their mind as it lets them to pay attention in what they are doing.
  • Starfish Hand meditation- It is one of the best meditation that combines the use of touch with breathing. This simple yet effective technique allows the students to focus again and brings the mind to the center, letting them to control their emotions and calm down.
  • Concentrate on mind and body- The students tend to think about stories, which increase their anxiety level and takes away their attention from what they need to do. Teach them to observe the sensation in their body. This will gradually reduce their anxious feeling, even quickly at times.
  • Mindful walking- It is important to go for a peaceful walk, paying attention to the feeling of your feet on the green grass, and again bringing back your attention. This practice will calm your mind and helps you recover from agitation. This also helps after completing an exam. For example, when civil services aspirants receive the UPSC answer key after the exam, they tend to get very tensed and induce unnecessary self-inflicted pain instead of being calm.
  • Let them speak their mind out- Students go through a lot of stress while they prepare for the exams. A lot of negative thoughts and anxiety grabs their mind. To make them stress relieved it is better to allow them express their feelings. Let them speak about their emotions and what they want to do in order to control it. Sharing their thoughts will definitely relax their mind.
  • Give some time for discussion- As the date of examination comes closer, the pressure of learning and revising the study material builds up every moment. But, it is also important to give them some time to discuss on different topics other than the school syllabus. It will allow their brain to rest for a while and build up their strength.
  • Fantasy and planning- It is important to know that there is a difference between fantasy and planning. When you observe that your mind is drifting away into the world of fantasies and worries, try to keep bringing back your attention to your study plan, for instance, how will you be answering a particular question.
  • 10 minutes of meditation- At initial stage some students might find to meditate for at least 10 minutes. But gradually this practice will let them to concentrate, stay quiet and meditate in their own way. So, give time from well ahead before the exam starts, so that meditation will set a calm mood among these students.
  • Mindful mantra- Let the children create posters of motivational mantras and hang them around the school and classrooms. This will develop a positive attitude and self-confidence among the students.

Mindfulness is all about controlling your reaction to the stress. This practice should be followed lifelong to be happier, healthier and able to effectively tackle anxiety.