(Pre-)Exam rituals

Before every exam I like to do the same things; eat the same, drink the same, always be at least 15 minutes early and organize everything on my table. Yes, I'm that kind of person. Doing things on automatic pilot is relaxing for me. And I'm not the only one. Lately I started looking around before an exam to see what other students bring and/or do to prepare for an exam. I've seen a lot of people with more pens, food and water supplies to last a week and all kind of little totems of luck (good luck charms).

What are your pre-exam rituals?

  • Totems of luck are not real, there are no evidences whatsoever to confirm them, but people trust them regardless, which is dumb (just like zodiac signs). You should instead supplicate to God, but ofcourse you cannot pray to God and lean back and not prepare yourself for exam, no this is not right. You should try your level best to study and prepare for the test, and then you supplicate to God and everything will hopefully be fine.

  • Charms more like putting "lucky" socks on. It's a self inflicted placebo effect, which still is a real effect. Mostly a sense of control which can help in dealing with stress and anxiety. Just as much as lifting your arms in a victory pose for half a minute can give a feeling of confidence. You might find it dumb, but I find it interesting how the human mind functions.

    Of course it doesn't replace studying Wink

    Did you know the opposite is also true? Girls in highschool who where asked to write down if they were a boy or a girl before a math test scored significantly worse than their equals who weren't asked this question. Interesting what a mindset can do to people.

  • It is not real though, you do not perform better just because of a thing you have and you take as a "lucky charm" you do not perform better in a test, athletics and other areas. If you do not study you should expect not to pass, but if you study and work hard, it does not matter whether you have a lucky charm or not, because it does not hold any power.

    what about those who say they use "lucky charms" but end up failing because they did not study. If lucky charms were proven to work, then nobody would have to study ever, my point is just that it does not bear any power and cannot harm you or benefit you, the only thing that will help you is to study and work hard.Thumbsup

    it is like the saying: if you fail to plan, then plan to fail, no "lucky charm" no "lucky sock" is going to help you, this is the reality in everything in life, not just exams.

    at the end of the day, you will pass or fail according to how well you studied, if you are well prepared and supplicate to God, then you can expect good. Your hard work and your supplication to God, if it is written, will be the reasons you pass. Because there is no strength nor power except with God, nothing happens except He Wills it, good or bad. By knowing that everything is written, you will not grieve over what you have missed nor boast over what has come to you, because it all came from God. Also God creates our actions too. Everything is written, at the same time, we have the freedom of choice in the sense that we are not compelled or have a feeling that we are being forced to do things. This is how we balance the fact that everything is written and our free will.

  • Haha, I guess I did not explain myself clearly. English is not my first language, sometimes it's difficult to get the message across. Especially on a rather difficult subject, which I tried to touch lightly but clearly failed in.

    Lucky charms won't help to perform better. They are there to feel better. It's a way of having a feeling of controll. I totally agree with you, nothing will help increasing your score except studying and hard work. It's not as if a sock knows the answer to a question xD.

    That said;  the mental state of people does have an effect on how well they score on a test. A suboptimal mental state can decrease the performance. In study, in athletics, in everything. Sleep is the most studied one I guess. After that food. Makes sense since they're the basics. Yet a lot of students use coffee, sugar and energy drinks in a suboptimal way. Others are anxiety and stress. For example cognitive behavioral therapy is a proven method of decreasing stress and anxiety which decreases the decrease in score on a test, sometimes with the use of a lucky charm ;). I'm not saying people should start doing this. I just noticed a lot of students have the same water bottle or the same cookies and I was curious what people here do.

    Some people bring the same pen, other lucky socks, some touch the field before entering, others pray or do nothing specific at all. It's all okay with me.

  • Interesting topic, tho I could never get myself to care about those things, but if it helps to get you into the right mental state, why not.

  • I normally focus on cleaning and cooking, so I do not have to do that so much while I am reading for an exam. After all the exams I like to go and watch a movie or go to a party. 

  • I just used to organize my workspace so everything I needed was on my desk and not in the way. And of course use the bathroom in advance!