Managing Stress – 96FM Interview
Exams are here and most students are going to feel a certain level of anxiety and stress around this time, some more than others. Stress at this time for students tends to be unavoidable but the good news is there are many great ways of managing it!
Anxiety and stress predominantly originates from perceived threats which set off a stress response in your body – the body gets flooded with cortisol and other stress hormones.
There is a strong communication line between body and mind that we don’t take advantage of. When the stress response is triggered, the body doesn’t know whether it’s going to be eaten by a tiger or whether you are worried if you have studied enough.
Our bodies are tremendously intelligent organisms and we don’t give them enough credit for all the amazing processes that are carried out without our conscious knowledge or direction.
Communicate with your body – tell it that there is no immediate threat to you right here right now.
Use the havening technique – rub your hands up and down your forearms in a comforting gesture 5-10 mins or until you begin to feel calmer. (videos on youtube)
Use box breathing (video’s on youtube) and bring your attention back to the safety of your current surroundings and environment – use your 5 senses to really take in your environment.
Complete the stress cycle – to adjust the levels of cortisol and stress hormones in the body they need to be burned off so to speak, this happens by getting the blood flowing throughout the body. Shake it out, shake your hands/legs and jump up and down.
Assess what is within your control in your present moment, is there an action you can take that will help you to feel more at ease? If not set the intention that you will relax for now and as soon as you are able to, you will then take action.
Tell yourself that you are doing your very best and that is all anyone can do at any given moment.
Spend 2 minutes in the morning when you wake up and 2 minutes in the evening before you go to bed, visualising walking out of any and all exams feeling content and relieved. Anchor that feeling in your body by pressing your thumb and index finger together.
Drink lots of water – staying hydrated can balance your mood.
Take regular study breaks where you shut off completely from the books, have fun and relax.