4 tips for getting in the right mindset on DANB exam day

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You’ve reviewed the outlines, studied the material thoroughly, and taken practice tests. Now, the big day is here, and all that’s left to do is take your DANB exam. It’s natural for nerves to set in before an important test, especially after devoting so much time to preparing. But approaching your exam with a healthy mindset can help you overcome anxiety and pass with flying colors. Here are a few tips for getting mentally ready to take your exam.

Try to relax the night before

Ideally, you began studying for your DANB exam well in advance of the test date and are feeling confident about your knowledge. While it can be helpful to review your notes and study materials the night before, try to avoid last-minute cramming. It’s difficult to understand, retain, and recall information this way. Plus, it can increase stress, anxiety, and fatigue. Instead, do something relaxing the night before your exam to get in a clear headspace, whether it’s reading a book, watching TV, or listening to music. Most importantly, try to get a good night’s sleep. When you’re fully rested, you’ll have better focus, attention to detail, and memory, according to the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Lower the pressure

Exams can feel intimidating. They not only measure your knowledge, but can also determine whether you pass a class or get into a certain program. In this case, they can determine whether you become a DANB certificate holder or certificant. Adequately preparing for an exam naturally reduces some of the pressure you may feel. However, if you’re still nervous, reframing your mindset can help you turn down the pressure. If you’re feeling stressed about the exam, remember that this single test is not the end-all, be-all or the most important thing in your life; it doesn’t define your intelligence, and your future success doesn’t hinge on the outcome.

Look at the exam as an opportunity

It can sometimes feel like exams are designed to trick you or reveal what you don’t know. However, it can put you in a more positive, confident mindset to consider the exam as a chance to show off what you do know. Remember, you’ve put a lot of time into studying and preparing, so approach the exam as a way to validate that hard work and advance in your career. You probably know more than you even realize!

Avoid comparing yourself to others

It’s human nature to compare yourself to others. But it can be distracting to do so before or during an exam. Research has shown that when people compare themselves to others, it can lower their confidence and increase anxiety. Focus on what you can control, which is answering the questions to the best of your ability, and trust in your preparation. Try not to worry about how quickly others finish the exam or how they’ll score compared to you.

Read more: 4 effective studying tips for your DANB exam