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How to Handle Exam Stress - Students in Singapore

Stress is a natural occurrence when we could not cope with certain demands or pressure. While a little external pressure could be a motivational push for us to do better and improve, if we do not manage our stress well, it could affect our well-being.

If you are looking for tips on things to avoid or follow during the actual exam, click here for more details. In this post, we will discuss a bit more specifically about the stress that students experience during and closer to the exam period and tips on how to handle it.

students overwhelmed with exam stress

Plan ahead

Starting to prepare for the exam a little too late is one of the most common causes of the stress and anxiety you feel during exam periods. Strong organisational skills go a long way in helping you to be able to manage and plan your schedule ahead. Putting a bit more effort in planning and preparation ahead will definitely remove the unnecessary extra stress you are putting on yourself by trying to cram too much information in a short span of time prior to the exam.

planning ahead study plans

MindWorks has an educational blog with study tips you could read and apply, some of the most relevant ones in planning your study are listed below:

Take care of yourself: eat, rest, and exercise well

It is first and foremost important to take care of yourself physically and mentally. Make sure you are eating healthy well-balanced meals and are getting enough rest. This way, you will position yourself better in managing stress more effectively.

student exercising

Additionally, physical activity has been proven to manage and improve your stress level. Exercising regularly has positive effects on your mental well-being. In between your study sessions, you could also do some stretching or take walks during your break. When you are back to your study, you will feel more refreshed and can study more efficiently.


If you are aware that you get more easily stressed during the exam period, think ahead of activities you could do to de-stress. Everyone is different, so think of an activity that can calm you down. Some of the most common examples would be listening (or singing along) to music/songs, reading, or consuming specific food or drink.

When you feel the stress is getting more than you can handle, take a break from your study to do these activities to de-stress before continuing. Remember to not take your break too often or too long as this would just be another form of procrastination and you will feel more stressed afterwards.

reading for leisure

Set Realistic Goals

Setting realistic goals will help you put your situation in perspective. This will help to keep your motivation up and acknowledge your efforts to do your best given the constraints you are faced with. On the other hand, a student that sets unrealistic goals would usually get discouraged along the way and as a result, may be more stressed in the process.

Believe in yourself

Life and school do get stressful at times, regardless of whether it is the exam period or not. There will be things that are out of our control, but remember that we could choose to control how we react to each of these situations. '

confident student believing in herself

When faced with a stressful situation, we tend to forget to look back at how far we have come. If you have done your best and prepare well, you have no reason to worry so much about the result. Hence, when you are under huge stress/anxiety, try to think of positive thoughts. This will help to reduce your stress levels and improves your well-being.

Talk to someone

If you find yourself struggling and not able to cope with the stress yourself, do not be afraid of asking for help. Talk to someone you could trust, your family, friends, or personal tutor about how you are feeling. They may be able to help you put things into perspective and look at things from a different view. Alternatively, don’t be afraid to seek professional help too.

Student talking to a private tutor regarding exam stress

Hope these tips help you, if you do need more study tips, do visit MindWorks Blog. All the best and happy learning!

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