Suggestions for Exam Stress

Suggestions for Students in handling Exam Stress (in response to ‘U of T Confessions.’

Hello there everyone. I saw this note on the  ‘ U of T Confessions’ page of a Facebook friend’s timeline – Bala’s a first rate individual and person I am proud to call a friend of mine who I met through meditation (Vipassana meditation

First of all I can really relate to the angst that you students are feeling especially at exam time, but also in the general bad feeling one gets when one is trying to do well at University (college, school in general – from high school and above) often with parents having paid or assisted greatly with tuition (especially in Asian communities).

I positively assure you that I felt the same way – I often felt anxious and insecure much of the time through classes, especially difficult ones, which is the general sentiment of the above writing – a fear of failure, or doing poorly with the possible inherent life consequences to career and future potential. As someone who got through this period with equal or similar difficulty, I can offer you some things that worked for me and which I discovered late in life.

Hopefully this will save you some time and trouble. I offer you several tools from my experiences.

They all work really well and one in particular can be applied instantly with immediate results. I should mention that I also practice reflexology on weekends at the Royal College of Massage Therapy in North York, Ontario, Canada, and share this type of information with clients.

I’ve recently discovered something called 4-2-7 breathing (variant: 4-7-8 breathing). When you feel stressed, breathe slowly over a count of 4. Hold for 7 counts (or two if you are a beginner), then exhale slowly over a count of 8. Your body will immediately show benefits in reduction of blood pressure and more regularized breathing. Try it! Stress has been the subject of many workshops that I have attended, (including those from practitioners of Naturopathy, Chiropractic and health and fitness instructors. I myself gave a speech on it as a Toastmaster a while back. This is one of many tips I can offer you as I felt obligated to share this information.

Other suggestions I can offer, but which I would like to elaborate on at a future date based on interest would be yoga, sports in general, especially those involving deep breathing, reflexology, massage, and something called neurolinguistic programming as I listen to an MP3 I downloaded (on visualization and the Law of Attraction). Lately I have been trying this. I must source credit and give source to the great work of Vishen Lakhiani (, and Marisa Peer (“Law of Attraction mp3) but also to the related great work of Asha Gill ( and Dr. Michael Beckwith –

The “Law of Attraction mp3” I was recently fortunate to download (as a participant in a worldwide podcast by Marisa Peer) is related to hypnosis and getting the mind into a relaxed state (where it can learn effectively) and ‘calling upon the universe,’ if you can relate to this concept: allowing yourself to act as a magnet to attract the things in life that you desire. From an intuitive and personal life experience perspective I feel that this works. I feel negativity of any form has always hurt me, whereas positivity, thinking good thoughts, and generally being a positive ‘light’ has always ‘attracted’ good things to me….So I speak from personal experience, not just ‘bookish’ knowledge…

From what I understand this concept of ‘attraction’ has an actual basis in quantum physics, which students should be able to relate to (especially ones in engineering and related subjects!) On that topic, one of the sources listed are James Allen’s “As a Man Thinketh,” and the 2007 movie “The Secret.” At the very least listening to such calming mp3’s or watching such movies I assure you will give you a scientific basis and tools to calm yourself to get yourself to a mind state which allows you to problem solve and study effectively.

I just wanted to say that I can truly relate to the student’s exam plight, the anxiety to perform well (which has always been a problem for me when under pressure, and which I suspect many are suffering from; nlp – neurolingusitic programming – science seems to indicate we learn MUCH BETTER in a RELAXED state of mind (so do what you can to achieve that to REDUCE STUDY TIMES) and that I can offer more tips if queried.

I may also offer my blog for you to go through as you will find many similar related articles which you may find I also offer a website related to one of my passions, reflexology and which website I consider a work in progress as I am not very ‘techie’ oriented (so open to suggestions folks!) but which has useful related information also.

  • Nilesh Shreedhar.

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6 Responses to “Suggestions for Exam Stress”

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