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HSC stress and time management

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HSC stress and time management


HSC stress and time management

Our eldest son is studying his final year at school.  He worked really well last year and had a few anxious moments or concerns about the HSC.  Now as this milestone looms over his head he is feeling particularly stressed and anxious.  He has this mindset that he doesn't have a life and is feeling bogged down with the workload.  I have encouraged him to maintain his sporting outlets and to reward himself with breaks from studying and school work but he doesn't feel as though he has any spare time, like every moment is dedicated to school.   Are there any websites or suggestions about how to help him and time management?? He doesn't know whether he should be focusing on homework or assessments!!  I don't want him totally focussed on school work and feeling that he has nothing to look forward to.... maybe trying to avoid ground hog day!  He appears to be focussing on the big picture as opposed to setting smaller milestones and focussing on them.  Any suggestions for setting goals, rewarding yourself etc.  I am really concerned as it was such a long time ago when I did the HSC....I hate seeing him unhappy and confused. 

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Re: HSC stress and time management

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Hi @Bungarra , 


Thanks so much for posting here - the HSC can be an absolutely massive year both for kids and for their parents, and you're definitely not alone in feeling worried, and wanting to help your child find the best strategies to help them through the year. 


ReachOut have actually put together quite a lot of resources on coping with exam stress, time management, and shared stories from other young people about what's worked for them, I've linked to the main page above, and there's also a page here 

which has some great, evidence based suggestions as well as apps that your son may find helpful 


5 steps to study success


Like you say, breaking down big goals into smaller, achievable steps is a big part of studying successfully, and can also help us to feel less out of control overall. 


It's also really important to schedule in time for enjoyable activities like seeing friends, or sport, or exercise - as you say, it isn't great if he is feeling like every spare minute has to be dedicated to school . The resources I've linked to above have lots of ideas about time management and goal setting, but if his worry is starting to affect his enjoyment of life, it could also be a good idea to look at some professional help. Do you think he would be open to having a chat with your GP to get a mental health plan, or visiting headspace? Both are affordable and accessible options for kids to find extra support and build the skills to help them to manage stress successfully. 


You sound like a really wonderful parent who cares about your son's mental wellbeing, which is so important - and I'm sure with you on his side he will be able to get through the year ahead. 


Re: HSC stress and time management

I would start by identifying exactly what outcome he and you will accept. This should include thinking and recognition that the outcome though a milestone goal now will not define the rest of his life. It is normal to feel stress in this situation. Learning to accept this is not easy. How we react to it is a choice. Successful time management requires realistic plans. Flexibility is vital as motivation and quality of thinking will change each day.strike while the iron is hot and go with it. No point forcing completion at a specified time block if the quality will suffer. Mix up tasks helps. Research thinking collaborate compare then produce your work. Use sport and gaming to strengthen the attention and goal oriented muscles. Use this time to reflect on the tasks you have. Time is a limited resource. Look carefully at where the wastage is. Decide which distractions are acceptable. Cut away the unacceptable ones (tv, social media) these are your “Boss” enemy. Your motivation is a result of your attitude . Visualise Victory winning - how does it feel? What does not winning feel like? . Will you accept not winning? Then - who’s driving ? You or Who? It must be you! So your plan then? Sketch this out for the entire task. I plan to —- by —— I will —- hours per week. The teachers will help me when I have trouble that slows me down. Then you must prioritise your time. You need chill out, sports, social, family, eat sleep etc. Small reductions in each of these Will aggregate to quite a lot of hours you will find. Multi task too where possible. ( I used to use tv ad breaks to write paragraphs) The show becomes irrelevant but sets a pace. You will be amazed how much C10 increases the rate of completion. Think during show / write during ads. Watch show if you need a break. Choose a show you don’t like or it will become enemy distraction. Imagine the actors doing your work and other strategy’s can help. Micro goals also (bowl of ice cream if I complete xyz by abc tonight for example). Don’t focus on one task or item for too long- this tends to follow the law of diminishing returns. Use parents and others to help you improve your plan. Not only try to comply with their plan. What works for you is what works. It needs work to complete though and you have to have a plan to win. Who’s Driving? Who’s on your team?

Re: HSC stress and time management

Hey @Bungarra 


Just checking in to see how you are going with this? 


There has been some awesome tips here when you have some time to read through Smiley Happy