Tag Archives: exams

The Magic of Lemons and the Power of the Mind

As a naturally sceptical person, I tend to question and scrutinise most things in my life to the point of minute detail. This can be of great advantage at certain times, where situations that arise have already been thought through to a degree where I can approach them in an appropriate and considered manner. However, a big portion of this scrutiny can be involuntary, misguided and lead to nothing other than furthering feelings of stress. I find this is the case when over-thinking situations that I have absolutely no control over, yet still expend the same amount of mental energy pondering to myself. This detailed internal assessment of situations usually takes form (as with most thought) as a monologue in my head, and I'm often completely unaware it's even happening when it does.

Since working with Brian on this Pass Perfection video series, I have gained a hugely valuable insight into how the mind works and just how much control we can have over what our mind does. Brian's techniques are not only straight forward and easy to grasp, but rooted in the real world and therefore immediately helpful and applicable to many situations in day to day life, not just moments of extreme stress or anxiety.

His episode in the Pass Perfection series, 'The Magic of Lemons' helped me greatly in dealing with what I detailed earlier in this post, involuntary internal monologues that lead to increased feelings of stress. Without giving away the lesson's content in all its insightful glory, this episode helped me to identify moments where this 'self talk' was taking place and understand why it was happening. Using simple but extremely effective techniques, Brian opened my awareness up to this side of my mental activity and how prominent and obtrusive this can be at times without realising it for a single moment. This knowledge of self and new found awareness of mind has since led to me understanding and therefore controlling this 'self talk' more regularly when it occurs.

I now feel capable of focussing my internal monologues as they occur to ponder and discuss useful things with myself in my own time rather than stressing out and becoming increasingly anxious about things I can't affect. This aspect of my perception has altered so significantly since working on Pass Perfection that something which used to be a sizeable hinderance to good thought and happiness, is now a welcome element in my day. This in turn, leads to living life as a happier, more content person and turning lonely walks and time alone into useful moments of reflection and personal goal setting.

From Exam Anxiety to A First in Law and a job at the UN!

I met Sarah when she was studying law at the University of Glasgow. She was a bright student, was respected by her teachers and did well in class but she was terrified of exams. She felt overwhelming pressure when it came to studying, let alone sitting the exams and her exam anxiety was getting the better of her.

Sarah was referred to me by a friend of her parents who had been to one of my courses. I took her through everything we cover in the Pass Perfection series. We started with relaxation. When people are in the frame of mind that Sarah was, they can find it almost impossible to relax. They also give themselves such a hard time about not performing well that the idea of taking some time out to clear your mind and relax causes panic and brings on even more stress.

This way of thinking is counterproductive, especially when it comes to studying and can add to your exam anxity. That's exactly why you need to take some time out to reset your way of thinking. Taking just five minutes to relax can save hours of wasted effort. What's the point of trying to study for ages if you just get worked up and don't retain any of the information? Using simple hypnosis relaxation techniques, Sarah was soon able to relax. This was something she hadn't been able to do for months and she was really physically worked up so taking just a little bit of time to unwind was a massive benefit to her.

Next we tackled the feeling of being overwhelmed by breaking up each task into smaller elements. This is something we call “chunking”, an important part of Pass Perfection. You can read more about this on Amanda’s blog post and find out all about how to use it yourself it in the video series.

Then we worked on her ability to absorb and retain information. Memory techniques are pretty simple tools to grasp but they make a profound different to study.

And throughout we kept the goal in mind. She not only wanted to pass, but pass well.

I'm delighted to say that Sarah got a first class honours degree and now holds a position in the international law team at the United Nations! Through applying the elements I teach in Pass Perfection she learned to relax, overcame her anxiety, reduced her stress levels, was able to study and perform well in her exams.

Looking back on the experience she told us that she had really wanted to do well, but felt so overwhelmed that she didn't know where to start.

“I knew I was capable of more, but couldn't see how I could get there. I would spend hours staring at my notes and felt like nothing was retained at all. Brian's teaching helped me so much. I couldn't have done it alone but with his help I achieved everything I wanted to, and more! I can't recommend his teaching enough. Buy Pass Perfection. I would have loved to have something like it when I was studying."