THE COGNITIVE MODEL OF TEST ANXIETY


QUESTION: WHY FOCUS ON BELIEFS?
ANSWER: BECAUSE WHAT YOU BELIEVE DETERMINES HOW YOU FEEL (and behave)!

BELIEFS -> FEELINGS (like anxiety) -> BEHAVIORS (like "blanking out," avoiding studying, sweating...)

Example:

Notice how these thoughts would lead to feeling anxious (& certain behaviors).

Notice how these thought would lead likely to minimal anxiety (& behavior).

HOW THIS RELATES TO REDUCING TEST ANXIETY

Test "anxiety" is a feeling with associated behaviors. It comes from anxious thoughts.

Solution: Have different thoughts. How do you do that???

1) Identify what thoughts you have right before you feel anxious.

2) Evaluate how accurate (or helpful) these thoughts are.

3) Respond back to these thoughts with

a) Reasons why the first thought is inaccurate, and

b) A different and better way to think about the situation.

4) Relax your body to further reduce any leftover tension.