The mere mention of a “test” seems to be a four-letter word to the mind of many students. Not only do they become anxious, but also there are a few changes in their behavior on an involuntary basis. Remember the high school teacher that would proudly walk in and announce a daily “pop quiz”. It is almost like the world stood still, the sound echoed and slowed to half the normal speed. Almost like a warp zone. That is because test taking illicit’s fear in the human species. They are terribly afraid of failure or looking dumb, so they work themselves in to a panic attack without even realizing what is happening. There are ways to calm your mind and body when you are about to take a test. Following the below listed tips can give you a successful strategy for passing that test! Study Guide To The Rescue If you have a chance to purchase a study guide, do not let your shirt tale hit your bottom before you do so. No matter how much it cost it is the key to the test. When someone has built a study guide, they have reviewed the material backwards and forwards in order to determine what material is the most important. The study guide does most of the work for you, because it is like having your own personal researcher that did the footwork for you! If you have trouble in affording the reference material, make sure that you ask mom and dad or get a group in the class together allowing everyone to split the cost. Psychological Helpers There are a few tips and tricks that counselors want to charge you for sharing. Here they are so use them and enjoy this free gift to you! If you are nervous, and most people are with a test, you can use mental imagery to calm your body. When you are sitting in your chair take you index and ring finger and hold them together at the very tip of the fingers. Now close your eyes and take a deep breath, hold it a few seconds, now slowly release it. Practice this as we go through! Do these three times all while keeping your fingers together. Now imagine that the stress, tension and anxiety are draining from the top of your head to the very tips of your fingers that is holding it in your body. As the anxiety, fear and stress moves down your arm slowly release your fingers allowing the anxiety to drain from your body. If you really concentrate and use imagery it really feels like water is dripping from your fingertips! Pretty cool, huh! Taking Your Time Do not rush through the test, take your time and allow your mind the ability to catch up. If you are in a hurry or so nervous that you are half way reading the questions you will most likely read it wrong. Reading a small part of the question or answer can prove a red mark across your test. Hurrying through anything will cause you to make mistakes and unfortunately have caused many students to fail a class. Most professors give you ample time to complete the test and do not worry as if you are diligently working and the time is up, most will give you time to complete the entire test. Test anxiety has become a hot topic in the last twenty years as some very famous individuals have suffered. The Old 1-2-3 That Mom Always Preached The older that we get the less “dumb and out dated” that mom really becomes. You know in younger years all of those test tips that mom gave always went in one ear and out the other. Now we find ourselves struggling to remember them, because we are anxious about an upcoming test. Here they are again: * Go to bed at a decent time – one of the leading indicators of poor grades is sleep deprivation. Did you know that sleep deprivation can cause you to be sick, miss an important pass or hit in sports, and even lead to accidents? * No empty stomachs – Making sure that you have had something to eat before a test can actually calm your nerves. One of the reactions of the body to stress and anxiety is the release of acids that can upset one’s stomach. Have something of substance in your stomach to soak up the nervous juices! * Be prepared – Do not wait until the night before the exam to try and cram the information. Chances are that you will not do yourself any good and will only frustrate yourself. You do not need any more frustration so prepare ahead of time. Remember look for a study guide! * Clear your mind – Do not worry with the electric bill, neighbors barking dog, or how to ask him/her out on a date when you are about to take a test. Remember to use your newfound mental imagery to clear your mind and take your test in the Caribbean! Hey the mind is a wonderful and miraculous tool.