Calvin’s Relaxation Strategies

Exams begin tomorrow, and for many students it’s stress at its highest level. Last week I talked about some exam strategies. Today, let’s talk about relaxation strategies to get through exams. 

1) Deep breathing

The advantage of this strategy is it can be used both while you’re studying and also when you’re in the exam room. Breath in deeply through your nose, and let your belly expand like a balloon. Hold your breath for 5 seconds, then exhale slowly through your mouth. While you’re holding your breath, tense up the muscles in your body. When you exhale, relax your muscles and imagine the tension leaving your body. 

When people are stressed, they breathe shallow and through their chest. Breathing deeply and through your belly will help you relax and calm your nerves and stress. 

2) Setting Priorities

Setting limits on certain activities can help a person spend their time more wisely and do things much more efficiently. 

Set imaginary deadlines before the actual deadline, because the human nature tendency is to procrastinate until the deadline. Doing things ahead of schedule helps to reduce stress around the actual deadline. Many people ask me how come I have so much time to do so many things. One reason is I am extremely disciplined and efficient in getting things done early and in a timely manner. 

Use this strategy on the exam. Set imaginary time limits on the questions and prioritize your time wisely. 

3) If you are Introverted, spend more time alone; If you are Extroverted, spend time with people

Monitor your energy levels. If you are introverted, make sure you schedule adequate alone time to rejuvenate your energy. If you are extroverted, try to make time in your busy schedule to spend with people as that is your natural energy-restoring process. 

4a) Sleep

Getting regular, consistent sleep is important to reducing stress. During sleep, the body repairs itself, stores short-term memory into long-term memory (good for exams!), and rests the mind and soul. 

4b) Exercise

For me, this entire term I’ve maintained going to the gym 2-4 times a week no matter how busy I am. Exercise is very high on my priority list because it affects my concentration level, stress level, and health. 

Exercise releases many good chemicals, including endorphins which makes a person happy and relaxed. Exercise and sweating helps remove toxic chemicals in the body, and helps refresh both the mind and the soul. The benefits of exercise are numerous that I could write an entire post on it. Our bodies weren’t designed for long hours of sitting in front of a computer which is the norm in the 21st century. One key benefit of exercising is many shoulder and back pains get better when a person starts exercising and taking care of his or her body. 

Good luck on your exams!!

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