How to pass exams – Part 12 – How to feel more confident everyday
There are lots of crazy theories out there, but the following exercise has been scientifically proven to help the way we feel about our lives (and that obviously includes our education too).
The fascinating book ‘59 seconds’ by Professor Richard Wiseman looks at the proven research on this subject.
Basically, it’s all about being grateful for what we’ve got, not what we haven’t got. Some people have called it ‘the attitude of gratitude’. The other day I was in a carpet shop and I was chatting to the salesman about how nice it smells in his shop, ‘new carpets’ is one of my favourite smells! But he told me he never even notices the smell anymore.
We take lots of things in life for granted and just like the carpet smell, we can get used to these things and they just become part of our everyday lives. The trick is to be thankful for the stuff we often forget. Things like a warm home, regular meals, a loving family, good friends, a bit of spending money etc.
Give it a go…take a pen and write down things that you are grateful for under the headings on the next page.
Try and write a minimum of three for each one.
You could even make this into a wall chart with blank bricks or do it with post-it notes.
For example in the row ‘family’, you might ask yourself ‘what are some good things about being in my family?’
Maybe your answers might be ‘feeling cared for’, ‘being provided with somewhere to live’.
[ Based on years of research you can read more about Lee’s work at http://leejackson.org/education/howtoenjoyandsucceedatschoolandcollege – How to pass exams ]
After doing this exercise, read it again. How do you feel now?
If you were to do this quickly everyday would it help?
Psychologists Robert Emmons and Michael McCullough seem to think so, they studied it with groups of people and said the results were amazingly positive, people were happier, more optimistic and even physically fitter!
(“Counting blessings versus burdens: An experimental investigation of gratitude and subjective well-being in daily life” published 2003)
More to come…
This an excerpt from Top UK motivational School Speaker Lee Jackson’s book “How To Enjoy And Succeed At School And College” Available in paperback and on Kindle (for only £1.99 during pre-exam time) here now.