Self-care tips for completing exams and self-assessments | NCFE

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Self-care tips for completing exams

18 November 2021

We understand that you will be sitting external assessments this year for the first time in nearly two years, perhaps the first time ever. With exams season approaching, we wanted to share our tips on how to look after yourself, enabling you to reach your full potential.

Get active. Exercise increases your overall health and well-being. Getting active releases endorphins, which are chemicals produced by the body to relieve stress and pain. Exercise is also good for taking your mind off the stress you may be feeling and will help to improve your sleep.

Connect with nature. Although the weather’s not always reliable, it’s great to get outdoors in the fresh air and feel revitalised. Research shows that people who are more connected with nature are usually happier in life - nature generates feelings of calmness, enjoyment, creativity and can help improve concentration.

Reduce your screen time. Taking time away from technology has many benefits including reducing stress. Taking one tech-free day a week can help you to switch off from the virtual world, allowing you to recharge and increase productivity. Reducing your technology use can also help you to sleep better. By switching off your screen an hour before bed, you’ll find yourself more able to fully relax.

Rediscover your favourite music. Studies show that listening to music can reduce anxiety and stress by 65%. So, try singing, dancing, or listening to your favourite mood-boosting songs to lift your spirits!

Boost your immune system. Find healthy recipes on Instagram or TikTok to help achieve a nutritious, balanced diet. Doing this is key to helping our bodies manage psychological changes such as stress or anxiety.

Share how you feel. Speak to a friend, family member or teacher and let them know how you’re feeling. This helps to contribute to emotional recovery, as well as to the relief of negative feelings. 

Make time for sleep. Sleep is a powerful stress reducer - by following a regular sleep routine and ensuring you’re getting the right amount of sleep, you can help to calm and restore the body, improve concentration and regulate your mood.

It’s important to remember that all situations pass in time, and that you can only try your best. You can find further resources on self-care tips around exams and self-assessments below:


Further support

It’s important to tell someone about the things you’re worried about, whether that be a friend, parent, guardian or teacher. If you’re struggling with your mental health, it’s vital that you seek further support by going to your GP, who can help you to find the best support for your situation. More links to organisations who can support you or someone you know who is struggling with their mental health can be found here.