Millions of students took the Higher Education Institutions Exam (YKS) last month, after a long-term study schedule. Psychologist Birgül Sena Mayda, who stated that the students experienced a feeling of emptiness after the exam was over, said, “When we say anxiety, we actually talk about uncertainty. Before the exam ‘How will my exam go?’ The students who asked the question ‘Will I be able to get into the university I want?’ he asks. The question is changing, but the uncertainty remains the same.”

ANXIETY CAN MAKE WRONG DECISIONS

Stating that a person can make wrong decisions with an increase in anxiety level, Mayda said, “Usually, after the exam, students may think that the exams are bad even if they pass well. This causes us to set up catastrophic scenarios as our anxiety level increases. We often imagine the worst or perform a cognitive distortion we call mind reading. For example; ‘My father thinks all his hard work has been wasted’ is a mind reading after the exam. We just think we know what the other person is thinking. Thus, we begin to deal with thoughts too much. Since there are thoughts that make us feel negativity, our anxiety level increases as we answer these questions.”

Hopelessness Triggers Anxiety, Anxiety Addictions

Emphasizing that the level of anxiety increases as the level of hopelessness increases, Mayda said, “As the level of hopelessness increases, the level of anxiety also increases. Therefore, internet addiction is triggered. Since students do not know what to do after YKS, they spend more time in front of the internet due to the feeling of emptiness. Families not being with students, criticizing them, saying ‘you didn’t study hard anyway’ will lead the student to become more lonely and therefore to the internet. Internet, alcohol and substance addiction can be seen in young people who become lonely. These are actually coping methods that we unconsciously use to lower our anxiety level. As we become anxious, we develop wrong coping strategies.”

RECOMMENDATIONS TO REDUCE ANXIETY

Reminding that the support of families is very important after the exam as well as before the exam, Mayda made recommendations to help reduce anxiety.

Mayda concluded her words as follows:

“Young people’s social relationships with both friends and family will reduce the risk of addiction. Thoughts can always be, but what matters is what we do with them. Therefore, it is very important to be able to put a stop to the thoughts that lead us to the bottom and worry us. In addition, students need to be aware of the moment. Hobbies can also develop. In this period, they can try everything they wanted to do before but could not do because they could not find the time.”




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