Coping With Exam Stress

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Coping with exam stress

Turning anxiety into excitement

The original link for this video is featured on the Learning Scientists website  in a blog about maths anxiety

The video talks about a research based strategy based focused on the idea that anxiety and excitement are physiologically linked (i.e. the body’s reaction), but that psychologically they can have different effects (excitement puts people in a positive frame of mind, where opportunities are seen, whereas anxiety leads to the opposite closed down mindset, which in turn prevents focused problem solving and a balance response to a situation). 

The suggestion is that the normal advice of trying to remain calm may not be always be the best response and that focusing on feelings of excitement might be better even though this may feel illogical at the time. The suggestion is that a threat mindset allows distractions based on all the things that could go wrong to overwhelm the situation whereas excitement allows a more opportunity mindset focusing on the things that could go right. It is also suggested that it is easier to go from an anxious state to an excited one rather than to a state of calmness. 

This doesn’t mean the individual is any less anxious just that their ability to do better in the situation is improved if they have a more ‘excited’ approach.

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