Tackling Academic Anxiety in 2019

December 6, 2019

Even for your most laidback student, academics can feel like a 24/7 job these days. Instead of dropping in to see their teachers when they have questions, students shoot their teachers questions via email at any time of day. Grades are no longer something students check-in on a few times a semester. Instead, every percentage point is available in real-time. Plus, forget going home and having a break from school. Now, students are connected on social media every hour of every day… and night.

As we approach final exam season, the pressure to master new material, deliver on quick timelines, and keep up a GPA can feel straight-up overwhelming. If school makes you feel totally stressed out, you’re not alone. At Crisis Text Line, we see an uptick in texts about test anxiety a few times each year (at the beginning of the school year and—you guessed it—towards the end of the semester). For some students, the idea of even sitting down for an exam can drum up crippling test anxiety, making it challenging to show teachers everything they’ve learned.

Even in this always-on school culture, we know that students have everything they need to thrive during exam season.

Read on for tips and tricks in managing your mental health while still acing your tests.

Get to work early. Sure, when there’s information at your fingertips, it can feel like you must be studying 24/7. Try using a calendar app to help you manage your study time and get ahead of the curve. If you’re having trouble allocating enough time to study for their upcoming exams, try planning your week on Sundays to set yourself up for study success!

Ask for help. Everyone learns differently. And, no matter how you learn, you shouldn’t have to do it alone. Sometimes, it takes a little extra work to unlock the way your brain works. If you’re struggling to comprehend material, it’s always brave to ask for help. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, it could be helpful to talk about it. Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor who can help you with the hard stuff.

Connect with pals. Buckling down solo to study for exams that are already stressing you out can be totally painful. Ditch the solo studying (sometimes) and build your own study squad of peers who are studying the same material. Even better: in the Internet age it doesn’t have to be in person. Try scheduling a FaceTime date so you and your friends can answer each other’s burning questions. You might be taking tests solo, but you all are in this together.

Maintain perspective. In the age of YouTube college decision reveals, there’s so much pressure to perform at the highest level academically all the time. Remember, your GPA isn’t everything. Your test scores say nothing about who you are as a person. School is so important but at the end of the day it should be about learning! You’ve got a big, bright future ahead of you. Crisis Text Line is here to talk if you need help keeping it all in perspective. Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a trained Crisis Counselor.

Students are under big-time pressure to always perform at their best. And, in a digital age, it can feel like there’s no respite from the weight of your GPA. School is hard. It’s also your chance to soak up all the knowledge you can. Slow down, take a deep breath and remember that there are so many tools at your disposal to help you make the most of your own education. You’ve got this.

Written by

Laurel Schwartz

Laurel is the Growth Marketing Manager at Crisis Text Line, where she strategizes and executes creative content to help people connect with an empathetic human whenever they’re in crisis. She holds a Master’s of Social Work from Columbia University and is an award-winning documentary filmmaker.