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Emotionally Preparing for Step One Karin E. Nilsson, Ph.D. UCD SOM Wellness Workshop Student Health and Counseling Services/ Office of Student Wellness.

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Presentation on theme: "Emotionally Preparing for Step One Karin E. Nilsson, Ph.D. UCD SOM Wellness Workshop Student Health and Counseling Services/ Office of Student Wellness."— Presentation transcript:

1 Emotionally Preparing for Step One Karin E. Nilsson, Ph.D. UCD SOM Wellness Workshop Student Health and Counseling Services/ Office of Student Wellness January 22, 2015

2 Components of Emotional Preparedness  Arousal Management  Health Maintenance  Planning and Study Skills  Social Support

3 Performance Arousal Curve, a.k.a. the Yerkes-Dodson Law Perfectionism/Arousal Performance

4 Don’t Let the Perfect Be the Enemy of the Good Procrastination can be a result of perfectionism—avoiding the anxiety can lead to avoiding the activity

5  Not all perfectionism is harmful. But fear of not being perfect can prevent us from starting, for fear of failing or not being good enough.  Putting off starting till we don’t have time to rest can help us avoid experiencing when things are half-done and feel less than perfect.  Not allowing enough time to do our best sets up an excuse to not be perfect.  So…we need to manage the fear of not being good enough without using procrastination. Perfectionism-Procrastination Relationship

6 Arousal Management  Positive self-talk: accurate, believable  Relaxation—recreation, time with friends  Exercise  Meditation: free downloadable MP3s at https://shcs.ucdavis.edu/resources/podca sts/#.VLmNEVql2eg  Good nutrition  Avoid over-caffeinating/substance use  SLEEP—this is a marathon, not a sprint, your brain needs sleep to learn

7 Positive Self Talk  Avoid comparing your insides to others’ outsides  Identify specific, believable, accurate things you can say to yourself  Avoid generalizations  Do one nice thing for yourself each day. e.g., listen to a favorite piece of music, talk to a friend, take a walk in a beautiful place, take a yoga class

8 Importance of Sleep  Evidence that sleep helps consolidate material learned during the day  Establishing a good, strong circardian rhythym will help on the day of the test  Sleep helps prevent illness, helps us manage anxious feelings  Sleep deprivation leads to reduced performance  Sleep has not been eliminated for any animal through evolution—it must be vital to have persisted through natural selection when we are so vulnerable when we’re asleep!!

9 Making a Study Plan  Setting Useful Goals  Using your assessment information  Using the Buddy system

10 “SMART” GOALS  Specific  Measurable  Achievable/Adjustable  Realistic  Time-framed

11 Things to Remember about Study Planning  Build in breaks every day  Build in “catch up” or rest days  Be honest with yourself about other commitments you may have. Build them into your plan—everyone will know what to expect  Use daylight hours—also promotes good sleep  Plan blocks of time, not the whole day as one chunk  Prioritize the day’s tasks in case you have to make adjustments

12 Study Skills revisited  New evidence suggests that mixing up where you study helps you learn  Alternating among different aspects of a topic helps form stronger memories of that topic  Test taking increases learning—retrieval helps strengthen memory  Mimic Test-Taking Environment: Multi-tasking is not helpful; turn off , Facebook, Instagram, news feeds, YouTube. Take breaks and enjoy connecting, but avoid quickly alternating among activities—it is detrimental to concentration and learning.

13 Self-Assessment in Planning  Use results of pre-assessment as a tool, not a measure of your value or future success  Acknowledge which subjects you struggle with and which you enjoy. Intersperse the hard stuff with stuff you feel good studying, but prioritize so you don’t spend too much time studying topics you already know.

14 Accountability Buddies  Talk about expectations: Feedback? Just listening? Rewards? How frequent shall the check-ins be?  Not necessary to pick someone you are close to—sometimes having a buddy who is only an acquaintance can be helpful.

15 Time Management Matrix QI – Quadrant of Urgency Crises Pressing problems Deadline-driven projects Some meetings QII – Quadrant of Quality Preparation, prevention Values clarification Personal development, self-care Planning Relationship building True recreation (re-creation) QII – Quadrant of Quality Preparation, prevention Values clarification Personal development, self-care Planning Relationship building True recreation (re-creation) QIII – Quadrant of Deception Interruptions, some phone calls Some mail, some reports Some meetings Many nearby, pressing matters Many popular activities QIV – Quadrant of Waste Trivia, busywork Some phone calls Time wasters “Escape” activities Irrelevant mail Excessive TV Excessive video games Urgent Not Urgent

16 Choose One Thing You Will Do Today

17 Questions and Answers


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