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Guided Imagery Offers Help for Test Anxiety

03 Jun

Around this time each year, we receive frantic calls and e-mails from people who are stressed, anxious, even terrified at the thought of preparing to take exams which will enable them to work in their chosen professions. Whether it’s the state bar exam, medical, pharmaceutical or nursing boards, IT, baker or real estate certification, a growing number of career specialties require state or national certification or licensure.

Test anxiety is not limited to recent grads. Often, workers who have excelled for years in professions which never required certification find themselves facing the challenges of passing tough, largely academic exams, in order to keep their jobs. Certification might not be a state requirement in some professions, but a growing number of employers are making it mandatory, which severely limits the job market for those who are not certified.

Certification and licensure exams are at the top of the list for generating anxiety, and the anxiety they create can sabotage self-confidence and even the best efforts to study and prepare, creating more anxiety and leading to a vicious cycle. If you find yourself or a friend in this predicament, do we have a solution for you! 

As a teacher, I often taught certification prep courses, and I can tell you it is wise to use all the resources available to prepare you for the specific test you will take. It’s equally important to calm the anxiety and make the most of your study and memorization skills. Guided imagery provides an excellent way to accomplish this.
 
According to Belleruth, “Guided imagery is a wonderful tool for anybody’s test anxiety, from an elementary school pop quiz to sitting for the bar exam. I honestly think that any guided imagery or hypnosis program designed to help generally with test anxiety and/or memory and concentration would do the job.”
 
To peruse an array of resources available through Health Journeys, turn to pages 29 and 30 in your summer catalog or go to our online store and use the category search. Under the Health Topic, scroll down to the topics of Self-Esteem and Memory to see some great resources.
 
We have some all-time favorites, like Belleruth’s Self-Confidence and Peak Performance, David Illig’s Increase Self-Esteem and Improve Memory and Study Skills, Martha Howard’s Keys to Your Highest Potential and Emmett Miller’s Winning at Learning. You’ll also see the newer products, like Traci Stein’s Healthy Self Esteem and Self Esteem during Sleep, and her newest offering, Guided Self-Hypnosis to Help Free Yourself from Procrastination, a must for test-takers who put off scheduling the exam or begin the process of studying for it the day before it is scheduled.

Belleruth’s popular Healthful Sleep is also a staple for those preparing for exams. Our feel-good products like General Wellness and Relaxation and Wellness help raise the spirits and support physical and emotional health. Our many products on Intuition and Mindfulness Meditation help sharpen the mind and we also offer meditations to quiet an over-worked mind. All of these are great when preparing for any exam or performance, and the best thing about having so many options is that you can tailor your choices to your particular issues.
 
I’m happy to personally recommend these resources and pass on to you the comments from many who have successfully used guided imagery to beat test anxiety and pass exams. Some have even written to us about their test results.
   
Excerpted from a recent letter to Belleruth, “I had to re-take the Bar. My second time, I used Belleruth's Stress Relief cd (with the Self-confidence cd thrown in from time to time if I need a jolt of motivation while studying). I would listen to Stress Relief at bedtime and fall right asleep. My wife enjoyed listening to it too. During the 3-days (2-nights) of the actual exam, I fell right asleep (despite never being able to sleep before a big exam during law school). I am convinced that the restful sleep made a significant difference. Now, I'm a lawyer!”

A fabulous bonus to using these resources to help you pass career exams is that they also provide wonderful support during the job search.

We welcome your comments, suggestions and stories and we wish you peace, joy and success.

Maggie DeMellier

Maggie DeMellier has been Health Journeys go-to customer service representative and marketing associate since March 2012. She worked as a surgical technician and pharmacy technician before she earned a BA in Mass Media Communication at The University of Akron. She operates a freelance writing business, specializing in medical ads, news articles, police blotters, features and business writing.  She was a teacher at a career college for six years, and earned a MA in Forensic Psychology in 2010. Maggie is the co-author of Parenting by Law or Grace, published by Synchronisity Press, in 2004.