Tag Archives: stress management

Tests are stressful, right? Complicated high-stakes tests can certainly be stressful, in the way that any influential moments in our lives demanding peak performance can be stressful. Unfortunately, anxiety impedes performance, which means many people freak out at exactly the moment they should remain calm and in control. What should you do when test anxiety strikes? First, consider objectively how ready you are for the task at hand. Find comfort in the fact that you prepared for the test you are taking. If you didn’t prepare, on the other hand, you have every reason to be nervous! Next, consider your options for stress relief. Some find solace in writing out their anxieties or adopting a power pose. Just knowing a variety of sophisticated ways to combat anxiety can alleviate it, but don’t overlook one of the most basic strategies: breathing. How is breathing linked to stress? Anxiety, according to Healthline,…

Read more

High school students are busier than ever these days, and downtime is infrequent. Test prep tutors often struggle to fit tutoring in around a student’s packed activity schedule. The time pressure of a tight schedule can be productive; students learn to juggle calendars and deadlines, and let’s admit that a bit of a kick in the butt can motivate anyone to action. But when does it all get to be too much? Then, according to blogger Kieran Tie, burnout occurs: “Burnout is a cunning thief. It feeds on your passion, your energy, and your enthusiasm, taking these positive qualities and turning them into exhaustion, frustration, and self-doubt. It’s way more than just having a bad day, or being tired and worn out.” Tie identifies the factors which can lead to burnout in the workplace. But we can readily agree that these factors, including lack of control over our environment, unfair…

Read more

Meet Rory, a bright, motivated high school junior who can definitely see himself as a doctor (or lawyer or professor or CEO…) someday. Rory, a three-sport athlete and AP student, has made the most of his school experience so far in an effort to present as an outstanding applicant to any college. Aware of the considerable benefits of prepping for the SAT & ACT early in junior year, Rory and his family begin tutoring in September with an eye on the December exams… Junior year these days demands far more of teenagers than most adults realize. Ambitious students don’t just take on advanced classes but also juggle a slew of activities in which they must show commitment, leadership, and excellence. Extracurriculars can be particularly stressful during pressure points in a season, especially when coaches demand absolute acquiescence to uncertain practice schedules. While Rory was excited about preparing for the SAT…

Read more

Now that another school year has ended and both students and teachers are looking forward to a much-needed summertime break, the time has come to praise the productive side of “downtime.” Do you ever look at your scribbled-over calendar days, resting your eyes with relief on an upcoming “blank” day when nothing is planned? You are not alone. Our busy world tends to valorize constant activity, but the truth is that taking breaks and having strategic downtime is crucial to doing your best work. Even the Harvard Business Review acknowledges The Upside of Downtime. What is downtime? For most students, the grinding schedule of weekday school hours suddenly melts away in the summer, and the student gains control of his or her time. Jobs, camps, trips, and summer sports begin to provide some structure to the upcoming days, but overall most students have more power to design their own days…

Read more

When Frank Herbert wrote “Fear is the mind-killer” in the sci-fi epic Dune, he might have been thinking of academic performance. Research suggests that stress is so powerful that it can actually shrink the brain. Of course, outstanding test preparation instills massive confidence on test day, but if anxiety strikes, the solution may be a simple power pose. Researchers Dana R. Carney, Amy J.C. Cuddy, and Andy J. Yap wondered if a person could fake it ’til she makes it, whether nonverbal displays govern how we think and feel about ourselves? They predicted that posing in high-power nonverbal displays would cause neuroendocrine and behavioral changes that would trigger elevations in testosterone, decreases in cortisol, and increased feelings of power and tolerance for risk. Their findings in Power Posing: Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect NeuroendocrineLevels and Risk Tolerance confirmed their hypothesis: By simply changing physical posture, an individual prepares his or her…

Read more

Life is tough, right? We’re always looking for ways to become happier, smarter, richer, and just plan better with the least effort possible. So why, when the obvious time-tested answers are staring us in the face, do we look away in search of something new and gaudy? The answer, when wondering how to become better in almost all possible ways, is to READ. Reading makes us better in so many profound ways. Obviously, through the right kind of reading, we become more knowledgeable. We also become clearer thinkers with more expansive vocabularies. But if you need more incentive than that to pick up a book, consider five more ways reading will make you better:   1. Reading makes you happier. “A nationwide survey commissioned by the National Year of Reading to explore the importance of reading in everyday life confirmed that reading can have real benefits for your health, as…

Read more

12/21