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Test day ritual?


*just for fun*

Everybody's got 'em.

Besides all the studying, what's your weird/interesting or helpful/confidence boosting ritual for test days?

Mine? (I wear my favorite pair of underwear and/or socks)


NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

I always get up early that day. I may just dilly dally around or I may study. Seriously, I get up between 4-5 on test days. I think I get too amped up. But I also stop at the convienence store and get a Twinkie!! It's the only time I ever treat myself to something like that!!! I think just the pleasure signals I get from my brain with eating that calms me beforehand. I've missed those since I've been on break!!

CT Pixie, BSN, RN

Has 10 years experience.

I found myself wearing the same outfit on test days. Not sure if it was coincidence or unconscience but it always seemed I had the same jeans/top on. :)

My conscience decision was I HAD to use the same pen for every test. Luckily that pen lasted the entire LPN program and my pen for my RN program also lasted.

I wear my favorite band's t shirt and I use the same mechanical pencil, it's blue and fatter than a typical pencil.

I have a lucky pencil:)

NICUmiiki, BSN, RN

Specializes in NICU/PICU Flight Nursing. Has 6 years experience.

My test day ritual was always sleeping until the last minute and then rolling up in the classroom at the very last minute. Yea I was THAT girl. I always got some really snooty looks as I squeezed by everyone to shuffle to that one open seat. I really don't regret it though, because I got to skip the pre-test last minute cram that only made me less sure of myself. I had no time to be nervous.

I always had a bag of crayons and a coloring book. Before tests, I would seclude myself and color. People laughed at me, but by the end of nursing school, some of my classmates would color with me and my professors knew it was my thing. Only stipulation to sharing a page with me was no talking about test materials. Only regression and jokes. Lol my peds teacher appreciated the coloring in criss cross applesauce the most.

This thread made me smile :)

I had "lucky earrings"! Even wore them to clinicals when I felt it was going to be a rough day or whatever. Sometimes, it was true, that my lucky earrings didn't seem to help so much, LOL, but....I still stuck to wearing them if something important was in the air!!

And whenever I reach for that pair now, I immediately flash to the 'lucky' days...and then think "maybe it'll be a better day today now that I'm wearing them"!

Humans really are freaks, aren't we? :D

I have a lucky pencil, and I always make sure that I take time with my appearance. No rolling into class in jeans and a hoodie on test days! I wear something I feel good in, take time with my hair, and do a tiny bit of make-up (which I never wear otherwise). I find that feeling good about how I look gives me a little boost of confidence so I'm not quite as panicked walking into the test room.

AlwaysLearning247, BSN

Has 6 years experience.

This sounds so weird but before nursing tests I always got a ham, egg, and cheese on a bagel from Dunkin Donuts with an apple juice and wore my favorite necklace. The one time I didn't, I didn't do well on the exam.

I always walked to the school bookstore, purchased a scantron and a 2.95 pack of zebra pencils. the one time I didn't, I got a bad grade so this was my routine.

honestly I think it was more an anxiety thing and that walking away from the crowd of people cramming at the last minute helped.

SavvyNurse91, BSN, CNA

Specializes in Medical-Surgical/ Neuroscience. Has 5 years experience.

Test day- I found a dollar before one of my final exams that I wear over my heart for luck. I wear loose fitting, comfortable clothes and a hoodie (since we cant wear jackets and I get cold easily). Then right before an exam I do deep breathing excercises to decrease my TERRIBLE test anxiety. Then I pray. :)

missmollie, ADN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Neuroscience. Has 4 years experience.

Every test day I would buy a pack of gum and 1 regular pack of starburst. If I opened the pack of starburst and it was red or pink, then I was going to do well on the test. I handed out the gum to anyone who was needed it before the test started.

I always stop on the way and buy a small chocolate shake & listen to a specific playlist on my 30 minute drive.

And I've sat at the same computer since I've started nursing school for every exam.

On the rare occasion someone takes my seat, I get all flustered.

I would wear my "lucky" necklace (given to me the day my daughter was born) and my "lucky" socks (shamrock socks that I wore when I passed my TEAS).

On the drive to school I'd listen to songs that motivate me / make me feel positive/excited/etc.

I would always get to class about 35 minutes early. Instead of cramming, I'd just sit there and browse the internet, zone out, try to relax, etc.

The moments leading up to the test being handed out, I'd take deep breaths. I've always had a problem with test anxiety, so I'd go over in my head the way I'm going to feel when I get that first question that throws me. I feel that panic instantly, and I remind myself to keep calm and keep going (and to go back to it if I can / need to). Take a few more deep breaths before the exam, and just continue a steady breathing pattern throughout.

I usually get up around 4-5AM and get ready wearing comfortable clothing. For almost every test I wore a hoody and leggings and then head to the starbucks located right by my school. I would get there by 6AM and sure enough I noticed other students going there were 2nd, 3rd and 4th semester students as well :) Our tests were on computers so I made sure to come in early, and log into my account. Some people would forget there password/username and lose time on the test because of it.

NurseGirl525, ASN, RN

Specializes in ICU.

One other thing I forgot, my boyfriend bought me these beautiful diamond earrings for Valentine's Day. From day one he has for some reason just calmed me. He has been my rock. So I put those earrings in before I leave and right before my test I reach up and touch them. It calms me.

I always looked a mess on test day. No effort made to even look presentable. Lol. My hair was up in a ratty bun or just brushed down & unsecured and, no matter how hot it was outside, I always wore a comfy Aero jogging suit.

So, when I took NCLEX, I had to mess my hair up and wipe my carefully filled in brows off. I had on my jogging suit too, but I left the hoodie in the car because I was unsure if I'd be allowed to wear it into the testing room. I made sure I looked like my crazed/ragged test day self.