We know for many of you out there, exam season is well under-way, be that GCSEs, A-Levels or university exams. All of us here at Bigfoot HQ have been there too and survived the experience – just about. So here are our top tips for getting through those long exam-filled weeks.
1. Be honest with yourself
If you’re a diligent student – which we’re sure all of our Bigfooters are! – you will have been heads down revising for quite a while by this point! You can’t remember what life is like outside of the four walls of your room / the library / the exam hall. So right now, anything seems like an interesting distraction. Be honest with yourself. If you’re not getting any work done, go for a walk, or treat yourself to an hour of your favourite programme – but move away from your desk to do it. Because if you sit at your desk all day telling yourself you’re working, when you’re actually watching cat videos on YouTube, you will get to the end of the day and feel well and truly depressed – trust us!
2. Harness the power of positive procrastination
Yes – positive procrastination is a thing – you can read more about it here. Pit unappealing tasks against each other. When you really don’t want to do your calculus revision, that piece of creative writing coursework might seem positively fun in comparison! (Obviously, you still need to do your calculus revision at some point. Schedule it in for a time you know you can handle it – first thing in the morning might be good!) If you need a break from work altogether, put some music on and do your laundry, tidy your desk, sort your revision folder out. Don’t let these tasks become all you ever do, but scheduling half an hour for them will make you feel like you've had a break and achieved something great too!
3. Make deals with yourself and stick to them
If I do an hour of Physics revision, I can have a cookie. If I stick to my revision timetable for today, I can watch Made in Chelsea tonight. That sort of thing. And then... be strict. Have a clock visible so you can easily see how long until your next break without needing to look at your phone for a text-check – I mean, time-check.
4. Get some exercise
Get the endorphins pumping – even if it’s just a brisk walk. You’ll feel happier and more able to concentrate after. Why not meet up with a friend to do it? It can be hard to schedule social time during exams – seeing each other in the exam hall doesn’t really count! If you’re studying for the same exam – maybe ban subject specific conversation. You don’t need to be panicked by hearing how much further into a topic they’ve got than you (or vice versa).
5. Remember: the end is in sight
Although exams are horrible, when exams begin revision is nearly over. And at least you get to leave the house, even if it only is to go to an exam and maybe have a quick coffee with friends after. Only a few more weeks and you’ll be free to enjoy a long, post-exam summer. And here at Bigfoot HQ, we’re pretty jealous of that. But hey, you’ll have earned it!