Staying Calm Under Pressure:
Strategies for Managing
Exam Stress and Anxiety

Table of Contents


As Lewa Academy students preparing for the Cameroon General Certificate of Education (GCE) exams, you’re familiar with the mix of excitement and apprehension that comes with exam season. While a certain level of stress can be motivating, excessive anxiety can hinder your performance and overall well-being. This guide is designed to provide you with effective strategies to manage exam stress and anxiety, ensuring that you approach your GCE exams with confidence and composure.

Understanding Exam Stress and Anxiety

Exam stress is a natural response to the pressure of exams and the desire to perform well. Anxiety, on the other hand, involves feelings of worry, fear, and unease that can affect your concentration and focus.

Strategies for Managing Exam Stress and Anxiety:

1 Develop a Study Plan:

  • Create a realistic study schedule that allocates time for each subject. A well-structured plan reduces last-minute cramming and associated stress.

2. Practice Mindfulness:

  • Mindfulness techniques, such as deep breathing and meditation, help calm your mind and reduce stress. Incorporate mindfulness into your daily routine.

3. Break Tasks into Smaller Steps:

  • Break down your study tasks into smaller, manageable steps. This approach prevents overwhelm and gives you a sense of accomplishment.

4. Stay Organized:

  • Keep your study materials organized. A clutter-free study space and organized notes contribute to a clearer mind.

5. Stay Physically Active:

  • Engage in regular physical activity. Exercise releases endorphins, which are natural mood enhancers that combat stress.

6. Get Adequate Sleep:

  • Ensure you’re getting enough sleep. A well-rested mind performs better during exams.

7. Healthy Diet:

  • Eat a balanced diet rich in nutrients. Foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains support brain function and overall well-being.

8. Positive Self-Talk:

  • Replace negative thoughts with positive affirmations. Remind yourself of your capabilities and focus on your strengths.

9. Visualization:

  • Visualize yourself successfully navigating through your exams. Positive visualization can boost your confidence and reduce anxiety.

10. Take Breaks: – Regular breaks during study sessions are essential. Step away from your materials and engage in activities you enjoy.

11. Seek Support: – Talk to friends, family, or teachers about your feelings. Sometimes, sharing your concerns can provide emotional relief.

12. Practice Relaxation Techniques: – Practice relaxation techniques like progressive muscle relaxation or listening to calming music to alleviate tension.

13. Avoid Cramming: – Avoid cramming the night before exams. Adequate preparation beforehand reduces last-minute stress.

14. Focus on What You Can Control: – Concentrate on what you can control – your preparation and approach. Let go of factors beyond your control.

15. Reward Yourself: – After completing study milestones or exams, reward yourself with small treats or leisure activities.


Remember, exam stress is a normal part of the academic journey, and you’re not alone in feeling it. By applying these strategies and personalizing them to your needs, you can effectively manage stress and anxiety. Lewa Academy believes in your abilities, and with the right mindset and preparation, you’re well-equipped to excel in your GCE exams while maintaining your well-being.


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