How to Deal with GRE Anxiety?: Dealing Tips

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How to deal with GRE anxiety

GRE test scores are essential for admission into a reputed international graduate school. Thus the pressure of the tests determines your future of enrolling at the university, but you should not take your mental health lightly. More than 50% of test takers are witnessed to repeat the exam, followed by poor performance on the first attempt due to anxiety.  Further, little stress can help boost your performance; however, it can be counterproductive as sometimes it limits a person’s ability to study.  If you want to know more about GRE anxiety, what GRE anxiety is and much more, then keep reading!

What is GRE Test Anxiety?

Educational Testing Service (ETS) developed and is the responsible body for administering the GRE or Graduate Record Examination to determine that an applicant is ready to attend graduate school. Thus it is pretty apparent why the weight of this test leads to anxiety. Anxiety is a typical physiological response to dangerous conditions requiring heightened awareness. However, anxiety increases awareness, processing, and visual and aural stimuli. But the major problem is with the rise of anxiety, the higher-order thinking skills of a person drop which is crucial for the GRE. 

How to Deal with GRE Anxiety?

When preparing for the GRE, you must learn GRE test material while simultaneously minimising exam-related stress. This can be done in the following ways. 

●  Be prepared

When you know the content well, it is the most underrated but well-known way of reducing stress. You must prepare for the test so that the content of the test is not stressful. 

●  Take every official test you possibly can

Taking all four ETS practice tests before your first attempt can also help in reducing stress. When you are familiar with the GRE, you get comfortable attempting the GRE test. When you take full-length practice tests when you are taking the actual test, it also feels like you are attempting a practice test.

Must Read: Data Interpretation Tricks for GMAT/GRE

  Exposure Therapy

Exposure therapy is a therapy or a situation in which a person is put in a particular situation to provoke fear or anxiety so that they are comfortable with stimuli. This can be done by visualising yourself attempting the GRE; when you feel anxiety responses, you are supposed to learn to manage them. 

●  See your success

It is quite evident that most people usually underestimate their cognitive patterns after their performances. Thus you are required to believe in your abilities to achieve certain things. You may sabotage your valuable skills before you put them on your test. You must visualise yourself as you can ace this GRE, answers will be written appropriately, and you will score well. Visualisation is the best and most simple way that can help in doing wonder. 

●  Turn Anxiety Into Excitement

When you are nervous about your GRE, you must address that you are not nervous but excited. You can remind yourself that you are excited about the preparation for your GRE by using a motivating phrase that is essential to do your best in your exam. When you are stressed about your GRE, you must assure yourself that this anxiety keeps you alert.

●  Hydrate

It is known that even 1.5% dehydration is known to affect a person’s mind as well as body, but this usually does not occur until you are about 1% to 2% dehydrated. You must note that even minor dehydration also leads to stress and anxiety, whereas hydration boosts one’s performance and decreases stress. Thus you are advised to drink enough water before and during the GRE that is to keep you hydrated and keep your thirst away during the duration of the test. However, do not drink this much water that makes you uncomfortable. 

●  Recognize and Limit Anxiety in Your Life

If you are feeling upset on regular days, staying calm in the GRE test centre is pretty challenging as you are conditioning your body to be on edge. You are required to be kind to yourself while preparing for the GRE. You must not fret about the wrong answers and use them to learn. You must recognise that GRE preparation is unpredictable and try to give your best. You must also consider your benefits and try to understand that the difficulties you may face are probably minimal. 

●  Don’t Compare Yourself to Others

Comparing yourself to your peers while preparing for the GRE is quite normal. However, you are required to stop this as this distracts you from your GRE goals. Thus you are required to be your best self. Comparing yourself to others also leads to GRE anxiety distraction. You must only focus on your goals. 

Must Read: GRE Preparation Tips


Is the GRE test at home harder?

Whether taking the GRE test at home or the testing centre both have the same structure, length as well and difficulty.

Should I be nervous about the GRE?

Having GRE anxiety is quite normal; however, you are advised not to let the anxiety overwhelm you. But you are required to reframe anxiety as excitement instead, as this can help you in scoring.

What are the common symptoms of test anxiety?

Some common symptoms of test anxiety are nausea, diarrhoea,  vomiting, stomach pain, shortness of breath and rapid heartbeat.

Although experiencing GRE anxiety is extremely common, you should try not to allow it to get the better of you. However, to improve your chances of scoring, you must reframe fear as anticipation. For more such updates, keep reading at Leverage Edu

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