6 Tips to Beat Final Exam Stress

Final exam stress tips are featured, with our best tips for acing exams and beating stress as a college student.

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Final exams stress tips: How to beat final exam stress in college

Have you ever seen a stress-free college student? I haven’t, unless you count the freshmen who mess up the first half of the semester, say “screw it” to the rest and never attend class again. And let’s be real – even they are feeling the stress on the inside.

Stress is a huge part of the college experience, and it’s something we all have to deal with in life. We don’t, however, have to let it get the best of us.

This may come as a shock, but stress DOES NOT have to take over your life, no matter how many finals you have. You can still do well on your tests without wanting to die for an entire week.

I know this is a fashion site, but it’s also a site about college life, and finals are a huge part of that. Here are my top tips for keeping stress at a minimum during your hectic final exams week that is probably happening right now or very soon at your school.

Just for the record, these tips actually work, and the list doesn’t include any cliche’ crap that doesn’t, like “deep breathing exercises”.

1. Avoid stressful people.

Stress actually is contagious. During exam week, resist the urge to have a study session with your super-tense friend, especially if she’s complaining about all the work she has to do and breaking pencils all over the place. Her stress will only add to your stress.

2. Eat healthy and exercise.

This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s a wonder how many people forget it. Skip the sugar, which will make you crash, and go for snacks like granola bars, healthy cereal or fruits and veggies to keep your blood sugar stable. If you’re studying for a long period of time, eat some protein too. Also, try to get some form of exercise. Even a 10 minute walk will leave you calmer and more focused.

3. Just say NO.

I don’t mean to drugs, although I’m not recommending them or anything. What you need to say no to are the people who want to take up your time. There will probably be a friend who needs to talk to you for hours about her life, or a keg party the night before your final, and if you say yes, you’ll probably be tempted to blow off studying. Resist the urge. Say no to the distractions and be selfish for a day. You want a good GPA, right?

Books on the table at the library during finals week

4. Force yourself to take breaks.

For every hour or so that you work, take a 10 or 15 minute break. Let yourself do whatever you want (check Facebook, check out that guy sitting nearby, stare off into space, call a friend, etc.) for those 10-15 mins, then start working again. This gives your brain a little rest and will help keep you more focused when you are actually doing work.

5. Visualize it all going right.

This is actually my favorite tip of all, even though it sounds kind of nuts. Imagine yourself taking the test and feeling confident that you know all the information. Picture getting all of the answers right, and focus on how relaxed you feel. Then picture the A on your test paper. When you imagine a happy ending, that’s often what happens, because you make the decisions that lead to it without even realizing.

6. If you’ve studied all you can, get up your confidence!

When test-time rolls around, it’s time to get yourself into confidence mode. You’ve prepared as much as you could, and now it’s time to ace the test. The tip here is to do whatever works to convince yourself you are going to do really well. Get there mentally and keep yourself there! Again, I know this tip sounds a little crazy but you just have to try it for yourself. I think you’ll like the results.

More tips for beating final exam stress:

Want more? We’ve written tons of other posts on this exact subject. Check them out below!


General college stress tips:

What do you think?

Do you like these tips? Do you think they’d work for you? Do you do anything similar when you study? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

26 thoughts on “6 Tips to Beat Final Exam Stress”

  1. I have a final exam for my math class on Tuesday morning.. Im so nervous! i need to pass this exam so i can pass the class and graduate! Im like freaking out about it and Im for sure using these tips to get through it! thank you!

  2. Man I’m gonna try this, I’m going through a tough time in my exam, I’ve failed for my first time last time but I WILL do well this once

  3. I have my 1st trimester on 10th sept and 9 days remaining, your tips did help me by giving it a boost. thanks … I am nervous because m the only one in family to earn, n this is my last chance to study. m persuing my 2 year full time MBA in India.

  4. “Just say NO….I don’t mean to drugs”

    At a time that seems so dark (aka finals week)…I actually laughed.

    Thanks for the tips.

  5. My final exams for my first year are this week…was feeling terribly down and so ..like many of the others I googled exams and stress.. and was directed to these fantastic tips. Hopefully I do well 😀 Thank you for you healthy eating tips, I just realized how much junk I’ve been eating while studying!

  6. I m an undergrad science student.. I just screwed my exam today, I don’t know what is wrong with me.. I forget everything as I enter the exam hall.. I used to be a very good student but now all my confidence has gone.. Feeling like a dumb.. The ppl i used to consider not so intelligent are scoring like anything.. I have nothing left with.. feeling so empty…


  8. Hi, I really found these tips helpful for me so thumbs up to the person who made this article! Thank you so much 😀 Please pray for me to do well for tomorrow’s exam

  9. omg finals are SO STRESSFUL. i have an entire $15,000 scholarship hinging on this stupid algebra final tomorrow. and it was all good till my stupid teacher crammed 2 chapters into the last class period before the final.
    ive tried so hard but unfortunately i think i may have to re-take the class 🙁


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