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It’s bad enough to have to take finals, but taking finals virtually can be even more nerve-racking and difficult. If you’re taking exams with someone watching you through the webcam, you may feel even more anxiety than during in-person exams. Luckily for you, I’ve compiled a few tips so you can rock your exam the way you know you can!

Acknowledge how you’re feeling!

I’m a big fan of journaling when I’m feeling anxious. If you can, write down how you’re feeling; it will help get the thought out of your head. If you’re noticing your leg shaking before you begin the exam, write that down and try to identify what you’re feeling anxious about.

Do some square breathing!

Square breathing is breathing in for four counts, holding for four counts, exhaling for four counts, holding for four counts, and repeating. This technique promotes relaxation and leads to clearer thoughts. I always use this technique before exams if I notice myself feeling anxious.

Just start the exam!

When you get onto your exam page, don’t just stare at the empty boxes nervously. Answering the first question is always the biggest hurdle. Once you’ve started, you’ll already have some momentum and will be able to keep going!

Use a repetitive mantra!

If you start feeling a lot of nerves during the exam, try to repeat a comforting phrase to yourself. “You got this” is a common one. Anything that will remind you that you have prepared yourself enough and you know what you’re doing is going to help calm your nerves.

Treat yourself!

No matter how the exam goes, give yourself a pat on the back afterward. Take a hot bath, eat some cookies, watch The Office on Netflix. Give yourself the break you deserve after your exam.

For all students, finals are really tough. Try to remember that you’re not in this alone and we’re all rooting for you. If you know you’ve studied and you know the material, don’t stress! You know how to nail an exam; just go do it!

As always, stay safe, go study, and eat the rich.

Kyrie Woodard

Columbia Barnard '23

is originally a Washingtonian turned New Yorker. Her hobbies include talking about her cats, Bobby and Greg, and drawing macroeconomic graphs.
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