The Night Before an Exam

By Steven Galvin - Last update

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With the Leaving Certificate kicking off tomorrow we take a look at how best to prepare yourself today for tomorrow’s exam. It’s easier said than done but you should take this time to relax, be positive and take a final look over the topics you are preparing for the exam – feel good about all the work you have done. Don’t put yourself under pressure by thinking negatively about the exam. You’re going into the exam to demonstrate how hard you’ve worked over the last year. So let’s take a look at the night before an exam.

The Night Before an Exam


Now is not the time to be learning anything new. Look over your notes and  review each topic so as you are familiar with those that you have prepared for the exam. Think of this as a refresher run through all the work you have done throughout the year. You’ve done all the groundwork. You’ve planted the seeds and nurtured the plant. This evening you are simply watering the plant!


All though you may feel the urge to spend the night cramming – don’t. It will affect your performance in the exam. There is nothing better than a good night’s sleep before an exam. Wake up refreshed and confident and able to perform at your best – rather than tired and stressed afer cramming and stressing your mind! Give it a break. Let it rest. And it will reward you and be at its best for the exam! 


Give yourself plenty of time to get to the exam. You don’t want to be rushing. Rushing equals stress. Stress equals mental pressure. Mental pressure equals  poor performance. Set 2 alarms to beb sure you’re up in time and ready to go with time to spare to get to where you need to be when you need to be there.


Have a good healthy dinner! Good food is brain energy and you want your brain working at its best, so feed it! If you can, leave the books for an hour and enjoy your dinner with your family. Enjoy the meal.  Drink plenty of water and best not to be drinking fizzy drinks or coffee at this stage. Keep it simple – trust nature and stick on the water! A healthy meal and plenty of water will set you up for a good night’s sleep and nourish your brain!

No Distractions

Don’t waste the time you are revising by being pulled away from it by the likes of social media. Get yourself offline for the evening and focus on your books. Maximise the time you are giving over to studying and don’t let distractions get in the way and stop you achieving what you set out to do. This can also cause you stress as you will regret not focussing on your work at the end of the evening and thinking you could have done more. 


Do what you can this evening and feel good about it. Congratulate yourself on all the work you have done over the last year and keep in mind that the exam is a way of showing this. It’s not an obstacle, its a platform. If things don’t work out – never worry. There are many, many paths ahead of you to take you where you want to go. Stay positive. Stay focussed and you will get there. 

Best of luck & well done!


Steven Galvin

Athletic and Rehabilitation Therapy
Energy Management Courses


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