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5 Mindfulness Techniques to Help Overcome Text Anxiety

Written by Amy Jenkins, Chief Operating Officer | MA Education | RCYT

"Focus on what you can do in the moment." ~ Amy Jenkins

Test anxiety is a common problem for students of all ages. It can manifest itself in physical symptoms such as sweating, nausea, and a racing heart, as well as mental symptoms such as difficulty concentrating and negative thoughts. Test anxiety can be so debilitating that it can prevent students from performing to their fullest potential.

Fortunately, there are a number of mindfulness techniques that can help students overcome test anxiety and improve their performance. Mindfulness is the practice of paying attention to the present moment without judgment. This can help students to manage their anxiety and focus on the task at hand.

This blog post will talk about 5 effective mindfulness techniques that we incorporate into our Mindful Education in Schools Program. Even though the focus of this blog is to help ease test anxiety, these techniques are also helpful before any event that triggers anxiety, such as a performance, sporting event or public speaking.

5 Mindfulness Techniques for Test Anxiety

Mindfulness is a powerful tool that can help students to overcome test anxiety and improve their performance. By practicing mindfulness techniques, students can learn to manage their anxiety and focus on the present moment, which can help them to achieve their full potential.

Here are five mindfulness techniques that students can use to overcome test anxiety:

1. Deep Breathing

Deep breathing is a simple but effective way to calm the body and mind. When students are feeling anxious, their breathing becomes shallow and rapid. This can make their anxiety worse. Deep breathing helps to slow the heart rate and lower blood pressure, which can help to reduce anxiety.

There are a number of different deep breathing techniques that students can use. One popular technique is called Finger Breathing. To do so, students trace their non-dominant hand with the index finger of their dominant hand. As they trace up the thumb, they inhale, and as they trace down, the exhale. This breathing pattern is continued for the remainder of the hand and can be repeated as many times as necessary. 

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2. Guided Mindfulness Practices

Guided mindfulness meditation is a practice that helps students to focus on the present moment without judgment. This can help students to become more aware of their thoughts and feelings, which can help them to manage their anxiety.

Here's a guided mindfulness practice that was recorded by me!

There are a number of different guided mindfulness techniques that students can use. We have a number of age-specific guided mindfulness albums for free download right here on our website!

3. Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxation is a technique that involves tensing and relaxing different muscle groups in the body. This can help to release tension and reduce anxiety.

To do progressive muscle relaxation, students should start by tensing their toes for a few seconds and then relaxing them. Students can then move up their body, tensing and relaxing each muscle group as they go. A guided Progressive Muscle Relaxation meditation can be found on the Mindfulness in the Middle Schools album.

4. Visualization

Visualization is a technique that involves using the imagination to create a mental image of a desired outcome. Visualization techniques can help students better understand and retain information, which can positively affect their performance on tests. This can help students to feel more confident and relaxed before a test.

To practice visualization, students should close their eyes and imagine themselves taking the test and doing well. It is helpful for them to focus on the details of the scene, such as what the test looks like, how they feel, what they are thinking.

5. Positive Affirmations

Positive affirmations are short phrases that can help to boost self-confidence and reduce anxiety. Students can repeat positive affirmations to themselves before, during, and after a test.

Some examples of positive affirmations to combat test anxiety include:

  • I am prepared for this test.

  • I am calm and confident.

  • I can do this!

It may be helpful to provide students with affirmation prompts, such as those included in our Mantra Card Deck or Think Positive Card Deck.

In addition to these mindfulness techniques, there are a number of other things that students can do to overcome test anxiety, such as:

  • Studying effectively

  • Getting enough sleep

  • Eating healthy foods

  • Exercising regularly

  • Avoiding caffeine and alcohol

If test anxiety is severe, students may want to seek professional help from a therapist or counselor.

Thanks for reading!


P.S. Get access to ALL of our best yoga and mindfulness resources - all in ONE place!

Challenge to Change Yoga and Mindfulness Resource Center

  • Full Kids Yoga + Mindfulness Lesson Plans

  • Digital versions of Challenge to Challenge's card decks (including the Breath Card and Mantras Card Decks!)

  • Breathing practice instructional videos and card decks for calming, focus and energy

  • Movement videos and yoga sequences

  • Guided mindfulness audio tracks

  • Mindful games + social-emotional learning worksheet Printables

  • Teacher self-care practices and in-services

It’s the one-stop shop for classrooms, yoga studios, daycares and homeschoolers!


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