As a great TOEFL Kung Fu mater once said, “If you stress, it is not TOEFL who will defeat you, but you will have already defeated yourself.” It is very true that stress, also known as test anxiety, can be the worst enemy for a student. Stress can lead to confusion, inattention, discouragement and forgetfulness. In fact, the slow-stress hormone in your body, cortisol, affects your ability to think and remember. Cortisol actually has the ability to burn ‘memory neurons’, brain cells that store pieces of your knowledge. This is a defense for the body to try and overcome the stressful situation, but it is also a huge negative for the students since he/she needs to pass the TOEFL and does not want to forget. So, here are five good tips to minimize stress before and during the exam:
How to get rid of TOEFL test stress in 5 steps:
#5. Understand stress: know your enemy; stress is a natural response of the body to make you alert and handle a challenging situation. Since TOEFL has a big impact on life, it creates stress. Be positive, remember that your life will be fine and passing or failing the TOEFL once is not the end.
#4. Proper breathing: often students forget to breathe right, especially when under stress in a crowded TOEFL test room. Oxygen is very important to reduce stress. Think about it, stop for ten seconds and take three deep, slow breaths. The oxygen will reduce stress and help you concentrate and think.
#3. What you consume: “You are what you eat” Make sure to eat healthy, especially before the test. For example fruit sugar is very easy for the body and the brain to use for energy. Some carbohydrates like pasta, rice or potato the night before the exam can give you lots of energy the next day. But, be careful! Heavy food for breakfast before the TOEFL is a bad idea. The blood will go from your head to your stomach and you won’t be able to think! Also, remember to drink water not just coffee.
#2. A good night’s rest: lack of sleep is the best friend of stress. You must try to get at least 7 hours of solid sleep the night before you sit the TOEFL. This can be difficult when worrying about the upcoming test the next day. One good trick is physical exercise; go swimming, running or play soccer for an hour the day before your test and this will help you sleep.
#1. Be prepared: it is difficult to avoid stress if you feel unprepared. Nobody likes to fail, and fear of failure leads to stress. It is nearly impossible to stay optimistic about your TOEFL results if you haven’t got ready. So, practice. Get advice from TOEFL masters, and complete at least a couple full practice tests before you sit the official exam.
We can’t help you eat the right food, but we can help you to be prepared. To learn TOEFL knowledge of our TOEFL Kung Fu masters, try our full course: CLICK HERE