Now and again many of us think back and wish we could have our time again, but how many of us would gladly re-live those hot summer days at school and the horrors of the exam room? Spare a thought for the thousands of teenagers across the country who are soon to be doing just that.
Desire to succeed mixed with pressures from friends and family can make the process of sitting exams seem like a mountain to climb that can only have one possible result. Let us also not forget how media savvy teenagers are and each year they are exposed to the usual media view that if exam results are high the tests must be getting easier and low results indicate standards are dropping; they can’t win! Is it any wonder there is a growing number of teenagers developing anxiety symptoms at exam time?
Teenagers who consult me with their parents often describe the same symptoms which have slowly increased over a few months. Many will have a disrupted sleep pattern, either finding it difficult to sleep or finding they are always tired and lack energy. Most will feel almost trapped in a vicious circle where they have lots of revision to complete but become overwhelmed and are unclear as to where to start.
Most parents are, of course, concerned and can feel frustrated themselves that their son or daughter feels this way, when all they want for them is to do their best. The teenager often has high expectations and a strong desire to meet targets. This of course in the right situation can be very motivating but for some it can become distorted and result in anxiety.
Using a combination of hypnosis, visualization, and a gentle analytical technique I work with the teenager, and parent, to reduce the anxiety levels and restore a more balanced and calm view of the situation. Often things have got out of perspective and once the anxiety has been reduced, it is far easier to manage those exam pressures.
The technique also helps to gently relieve any underlying emotions and anxieties that have been stored up. Let’s face it, growing up is not easy and it makes sense that clearing away some of those effects is bound to make it easier to deal with the pressures life throws at us; exams or anything else!
Exams are here to stay, and no doubt we will continue to feel stressed and anxious about them, but if there was a way to reduce that anxiety so that you were free to really do your best, wouldn’t that be your choice?
Shirley Balfe D.Hyp (Adv), Hypnotherapist
To discuss matters further or to make an appointment, please contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 01949 844649 (this is a 24 hour answer-phone – just leave your name and a contact number I will get back to you as soon as I can.)