Test Anxiety? Write It Out

Turns out the pen may be mightier than Xanax.

If you suffer from test anxiety, one way to make sure you don't choke under pressure is by writing about your fears for ten minutes before you start the exam, according to a new University of Chicago study.

Chicago associate professor Sian Beilock found that anxious students who took the time to write about their fears immediately before taking an exam scored consistently and significantly better than those who either did not write before the exam or wrote about an unrelated subject.

According to Beilock, this method works because it clears students' working memory -- the neural process which allows you to recover and utilize relevant information -- of latent anxiety, prompting the brain to work more efficiently on the task at hand.

According to BusinessWeek, writing about your fears can also help relieve stress in other areas and might be a helpful tool for those who have trouble falling asleep.

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