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Test Taking Anxiety

MTreigysMTreigys Core Member
in General 104 karma

Hi, so recently I've had a sort of issue regarding taking Prep Tests, namely that of some anxiety with regards to it. I've been scoring fairly well as of recently and do feel as though I'm steadily improving, but recently I've felt more anxious with regards to taking another prep test, for some fear of doing very poorly and feeling as though I've lost a bunch of progress because of it. I had this fear during my last prep test, though scored my highest prep test score ever. Any tips or recommendations for helping with this current anxiety?


  • TwentyStarGeneralTwentyStarGeneral Core Member
    edited May 8 98 karma

    I have the same issue. First, in terms of your mentality toward the test, treat the practice test as practice and not an ego boost/confirmation. Try to do each question perfectly, but accept that you will probably make mistakes. When you do make mistakes, think of them as being helpful, because you have unveiled weaknesses in your knowledge or technique that you can now fix before you take the real test. Also, accept that there will be variance in your scores -- there is a reason the LSAT scores are given with an accompanying score band.

    Aside from that, the best way to alleviate that kind of test anxiety is through getting better at the test. I have a Michael Jordan quote on my desk that I like and use for motivation and encouragement, "I never feared about my skills because I put in the work. Work ethic eliminates fear."

    In the test proper, when you feel yourself getting anxious, focus on controlling your breathing and take mini-breaks when needed and don't allow yourself to think about the result. Just focus on maintaining your process that you've been practicing.

    Lastly, try L-Theanine, I found that 200mg is helpful for calming my mind. There is a study you can find on the NIH website about the benefit of caffeine and L-theanine for test anxiety and test performance.

    I hope all that helps. I seriously struggle with test anxiety (and, to some extent, anxiety in general) and these things have helped me.

  • WillyBrandtWillyBrandt Core Member
    edited May 8 9 karma

    I would recommend box-breathing immediately prior to beginning the PrepTest, followed by another session during your ten minute break between Sections 2 and 3.

    There are many videos on Youtube that can guide you through it.

  • NashvonaNashvona Free Trial Member
    edited May 25 3 karma

    Feeling anxious before a test is a natural response. Remember that a moderate level of anxiety can actually enhance your performance by keeping you focused and alert. A great solution would be psychological testing nyc( which is designed to assess various aspects of your mental and emotional well-being, providing valuable insights into your cognitive abilities, personality traits, and emotional functioning. It can help diagnose or rule out certain conditions, guide treatment planning, and provide a better understanding of your strengths and challenges.

  • canihazJDcanihazJD Alum Member Sage
    edited May 25 8192 karma

    @MTreigys said:
    ...for some fear of doing very poorly and feeling as though I've lost a bunch of progress because of it.

    Mindset. Your performance is what it is and will fall within a certain range based on the questions you get. The issues that limit scoring range and create volatility within that range are things you WANT to see. If it's something that can possibly go wrong, you want it to go wrong now so that you can fix it... not on test day. For the same reason, practices such as removing the element of luck or inducing increased difficulty/less ideal testing conditions can be beneficial. I suggest seeing a potential low score not as a measure of worth or lack of progress, but like a friend pointing out that they noticed you were weak in a certain area because they don't want you to get it wrong on test day. Mistakes and missed points on PTs are gifts. Imagine if you miracled your way to a 180 on every PT you took. You'd likely never improve and get wrecked when your luck ran out. Further, you should expect score volatility. Individual PT's test only a subset of the things available, and until you get them all down whether you get a PT that favors your expertise or penalizes you for your weaknesses is luck of the draw. Volatility is a natural part of preparing for this test and if someone's analytics reflects long term linear progress, they're full of shit. In fact, here's mine... look at those drops:


    Does it feel good to see a score drop? Of course not. But since we are training to rewire our brains and be more thoughtful about our approach to problems, rather than rolling with our natural reactive tendencies, do it here as well.

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