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Pre-test anxiety

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Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 09:20
Hey guys,

I was hoping some of you might have some advice for me. I am scheduled to take the gmat for the second time this Saturday at 8am. I am a little nervous about taking the test so early and I am wondering if any of you had success with an earlier test time.

I have a serious issue with test day anxiety and I was hoping taking the test earlier would give me less time to overwhelm myself with anxiousness.

My first test experience was a 620 and I am hoping to at least hit a 650 this time around.

I'm also wondering what I should focus on this final week. I scored a 660 (q39 v42) on gmatprep exam last week and I've exhausted the og11 and og12 guides for quant. (my quant score is what I've put a lot of work into)

Any ideas?
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 09:53
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well i suggest sleeping around 10 and get up an hour + travel time before test so you might be looking around 6am. More than likely you will be there ~7ish if not too far so you can use the 30-40mins to relax, catchup on last minute formula etc. I took 5 hour energy drink and it was very good for me so you could try that on a weekday and see how you handle it - it has no sugar and it is very small so you wont be going to the bathroom or crash because of it. last week i just went over my weakest areas and redid some questions i got wrong on. You could certainly take more CATs but if you are easily affected by a low score i suggest you not to since you might feel down during the test and that is not good...
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 10:12
Thanks for the insight. Your second attempt was great.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 11:58
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One thing that helped for me was to focus on reviewing your error log for the final few days. Not only will it not give you a bad score like a CAT COULD and scare you even more, it will also give you confidence that you can now solve problems that you once had problems with. I took the exam at 8am too because I think I'll just exhaust myself from being nervous or trying to solve more problems on the day of the test if I chose a later time. I'm also a morning person though, so may not work for everyone.

If you try 5 hour energy, I def agree that you should test it out on a weekday first! I tested it and 30 min later I felt like I could climb a mountain, but focus was all over the place because I couldn't sit still. So it did more for me physically than mentally. I went back to my good old red bull for test day and worked great.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 12:23
Ya, I'm not really a morning person but I think I'd rather take the test tired than overly anxious. It was a tough call but I couldn't justify a 4:30 exam. In addition, my application is up for a second review the week of the 24th and I don't want it to get pushed back with 4th round applicants.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 13:26
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try sleeping early and waking early the entire week - i think doing that will make your body/mind adjust to the test so you wont be overly tired.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 17 May 2010, 13:56
The issue I'm having with reviewing in the final week is that if I miss few problems in practice I feel like I'm not ready for the actual exam. It's seriously undermining my confidence.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 18 May 2010, 11:53
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marcusaurelius wrote:
The issue I'm having with reviewing in the final week is that if I miss few problems in practice I feel like I'm not ready for the actual exam. It's seriously undermining my confidence.


I'd only be worried about that if you were going after an 800. Everyone's gonna miss a few problems on their practice test and real test. It's part of what makes it a test, right? You'll go in on Saturday and do your best and that's all you should be concerned about. Shore up on the weaknesses but be sure to know your strengths as well (it'll help with the confidence).

Good luck!
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 09:22
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marcusaurelius wrote:
The issue I'm having with reviewing in the final week is that if I miss few problems in practice I feel like I'm not ready for the actual exam. It's seriously undermining my confidence.


Hello Hello
From the sounds of it you've only taken one GMAT Prep test. I would take at least two more for a couple reasons- One it will help you build up stamina, and two because they are GREAT practice questions. Remember- the GMATPrep test were made for to be good practice, not to emulate your future score. While it is true that they are usually a good indicator I've seen people do much better and much worse than what they got on the GMATPrep. So just relax, take the tests, and realize that you're better prepared because of it. I think being prepared helps the most with anxiety.

Also, once you do these tests a couple times you'll realize just how many questions you can get wrong and still get a good score. Granted it matters where and how you miss the questions (at the beginning/at the end or if you miss multiple questions in a row), but I was missing around 10 or 11 questions on the math and still getting around a 49 on the math.

Also the above posts are right when they say you should go back through old problems, and work on your strengths. This will also help build your confidence because you'll get the problems right more often, and because you solidify your knowledge so that doing problems becomes more mechanical.

Lastly, make sure that you're breathing is regular when you are taking the test. Studies have shown that bad test takers often have bad breathing habits. Every once in a while just take a deep break, and then go back to rocking the test
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 09:32
Thanks for the insight. Actually, I did take the first GMAT prep exam before my first attempt. So, I've taken both tests. I've been working through the problems posted in the quant section of the forums for some fresh material. I'm just trying to keep my anxiety under control before Saturday.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 13:08
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Take at least a few mock GMAT exams in the CAT format and to try to simulate the actual testing environment since you've tried it before. That means not taking food breaks, engaging in telephone conversations, etc. until you have completed a section. I think there are free GMAT materials online. Check your results if you've improved. Focus on your weakness.

Also, don't worry to much. Stay relax and avoid stress. And eat healthy and get enough rest before the test.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 14:25
Thanks, I'm really not nearly as anxious as I was for the first test. I actually enjoy doing gmat problems and I don't have as much "riding" on this exam as I did the first time around. I'm going to gym more frequently to keep what anxiety I do have at bay. I mean, really, there is only so much I can do in the last couple of days.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 14:39
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Try reviewing the last 30-40 or so of verbal or quant questions in OG 12 so that you are prepared for the worst. Best way to get over nerves is to face the fear. What is worst that can happen? You blow one test. NOT the end of the world or even your dreams.

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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 19 May 2010, 22:40
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marcusaurelius wrote:
Thanks for the insight. Actually, I did take the first GMAT prep exam before my first attempt. So, I've taken both tests. I've been working through the problems posted in the quant section of the forums for some fresh material. I'm just trying to keep my anxiety under control before Saturday.


You can take the GMATPrep tests (1 and 2) at least twice and get about 85% new material on each. Taking these tests again should help you. Also, for the questions that are repeated, don't choose the right answer and then just skip over them. Go through the though process for the question as you would normally to simulate the real test
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 01:57
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IMO, being a little bit anxious before the exam is only for the best. It will stimulate your brain. Even the best athletes, managers etc. feel a little bit anxious before important (and often even unimportant) events.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 11:01
Excellent thoughts KRyan. Kudos.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 13:00
Ya, that advice is great. Thank you
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 13:09
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I understand your anxiety. I am taking the test June 5th and already feel it. Just try and relax, and stay in a positive frame of mind. 5 Hour Energy can be a lot for some, so maybe take half.

Does anyone know where additional full length practice tests can be found? Besides the mba website when you sign up for the test? I'm looking to try as many as possible.

Thanks.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 16:03
I think that one of the most important principles I've learned through taking the GMAT once before and the preceding preparation is that you cannot take anything for granted on test day.

Despite the practice scores and the hours devoted to preparation, you have to fight for every question you encounter. Simply resting on your laurels isn't enough. There is no reason to be overwhelmed with anxiety if you are willing to work hard for the duration of the exam.
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Re: Pre-test anxiety [#permalink] New post 20 May 2010, 23:26
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Practice, practice, practice. Under test conditions. Try to fool yourself that "this is the real thing". Even on the actual thing, your test score is not end all, be all. You can always retake.
Re: Pre-test anxiety   [#permalink] 20 May 2010, 23:26
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