It’s almost exam time! Arguably nobody’s favorite time – neither for you students who spend hours with your head in your books preparing for a nerve-wracking ordeal in the exam room, nor for the parents out there who strive to do whatever it takes to make sure your child does well. But, it’s a crucial stage that students of all ages go through, with the aim of securing good grades, and a bright future.

Yes, studying can feel like a slog, and as pressures mount in the period leading up to the exams it isn’t always easy to keep your cool. But, here are five things you can do, or encourage your child to do, to make studying easier and to get exam day off to a good start.

1. Align with Lord Ganesha’s Lucky Energy

Lord Ganesha is known as a symbol of luck and good fortune and is renowned as the remover of obstacles. So what better way to start your exam day by honoring him and seeking his blessings?

You can do this by listening to the Ganesh Atharvashirsha, the sacred Sanskrit text dedicated to Lord Ganesha. ‘Atharva’ means firmness and the oneness of purpose, while ‘shisha’ means intellect. So for strength in intellect, one pointed focus on your goal, and to remove any obstacles from your path you can start your day by listening to this chant. It is available on the Sattva Meditation and Mantras app.

Another way to connect with Ganesha’s beneficial energies is to chant the simple Ganesha mantra, ‘Aum Gam Ganapataye Namaha,’ 108 times.

2. Choose your Hours Wisely

Every hour, or Hora, of the day is ruled by one of the seven planets; Sun, Moon, Mars, Mercury, Jupiter, Venus and Saturn. According to the characteristics of the ‘ruling’ planet, you can determine the ‘quality’ of that time period. Each Hora is suitable for particular activities, and unsuitable for others. When we understand this we can use it to our advantage.

The Hora section on the align27 app maps out your Hora timings throughout the day. For study purposes, look out for Mercury and Jupiter Horas and aim to make the most of them.

Mercury is the planet of intelligence and speech, and Mercury Hora is a good time for focus, communication and any kind of learning or teaching. It is beneficial for work relating to technology and medicine, and if you are printing or publishing a thesis or report then Mercury Hora is the ideal time to do it.

Jupiter Hora is auspicious for pretty much everything – and as Jupiter is the planet of knowledge and wisdom, it is especially good for learning or starting something new.

3. Honor the Goddess of Learning

Saraswati is the Goddess of knowledge, learning, wisdom, art and music. When you honor Saraswati you are blessed with wisdom and knowledge which can help you during your study phase as you continue to put in your efforts.

Chant the mantra ‘Aum Aim Saraswati Namaha,’ 108 times to tap into Sarawati’s energy of learning and wisdom. You can also simply close your eyes, set your intention, and honor Saraswati in whatever way feels right for you.

4. Mentally Get in the Zone

It’s pretty hard to study when your mind is carried away thinking about some drama that happened last weekend, or what you’re going to have for lunch. But keeping the mind focused is so important when it comes to studying.

It would be wise to do a short meditation before you begin your study sessions. Even a few minutes will help you bring your mind to an alert and focused, yet calm state. ‘Ultimate Focus’ and ‘Focus & Productivity’ are two of the focus-enhancing meditations you can find on the Sattva Mantra and Meditations app. If your schedule is super tight, then simply sit with your eyes closed and bring your attention to the breath for a few minutes, or practise pranayama if you have learnt how to.

Immediately after taking those few minutes to center yourself and prepare your mind for learning, get stuck into your studies with 100% focus and commitment!

5. Check Your Moments and Be Prepared

When you create your study timetable, check on align27 to see your Silence Moments, Productive Moments, and Golden Moments. You might want to tackle your most challenging tasks during Golden Moments and your hands-on work during Productive. For very difficult subjects it is also best to learn during the waxing 5th lunar day. If you are studying through Silence Moments, you can do some of your suggested rituals that morning to nullify any negative planetary effects and help you get the best from your efforts.

If you study during a Golden Moment don’t fool yourself into thinking that you’ll soak up the contents of your textbook without any effort or that you’ll get top marks regardless of whether you focus or not – no, you still put in the work, but know in the back of your mind that whatever efforts you are putting in are supported by the planets!

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