Child psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg's message to students across the Hastings is be well rested, fed and watered during your final school years.
Mr Carr-Gregg has been in the Hastings talking to students, teachers and parents about how to help students cope with a variety of common issues during adolescence.
On August 27, he spoke to students at Hastings Secondary College and local primary schools.
For year 12 students he gave them tips on how best to survive and manage the stress of completing their HSC.
"I genuinely think there are too many old people telling young what to do and what to think," Mr Carr-Gregg said.
"However there are strategies that can help."
Mr Carr-Gregg said there are simple things students and could to do ensure they get the best results possible.
Prioritising sleep and making sure you sleep well each night is the most important thing going into the last few weeks of year 12 and during examsMichael Carr-Gregg
"Firstly a little stress is not a bad thing," he said.
"Stress can improve efficiency in studying and learning and it means you care and want to do well.
"The HSC is a stressful time with lots of study needed but the latest studies show that studying in 20 minute blocks is the most effective.
"Studying for 20 mins and then taking five minutes is really good.
"But the greatest study toll is a good night sleep.
"Prioritising sleep and making sure you sleep well each night is the most important thing going into the last few weeks of year 12 and during exams."
He also championed students to eat good food to help fuel their brain.
Eggs, blueberries, carbohydrates and yogurt are great brain food. Avocado and vegemite on toast is excellent and nuts are great snacks to help get through study sessionsMichael Carr-Gregg
"Eggs, blueberries, carbohydrates and yogurt are great brain food. Avocado and Vegemite on toast is excellent and nuts are great snacks to help get through study sessions.
"Brain food is so important and good food helps brains thrive.
"Sipping water is also crucial so keep the brain hydrated and improves concentration.
"And finally exercise can drastically improve brain function. There are so many benefits and proven connections to exercise and boosting brain power."
He also gave students tips on how to improve their memory.
"Using mind maps to literally connect common ideas can be useful. Using colour to coordinate different ideas and quizzing yourself and others on information is also helpful.
"The other thing is when making notes is to create brain friendly lists with no more than seven items.
"Parents also have an irrational fear of letting young people listen to music while studying. Studies show that some young people absolutely learn better listening to music.
"It also doesn't matter where you study but rather the routine of doing the study that matters."
Mr Carr-Gregg also told students to talk to parents about how they can help.
"Parents are always trying to help but sometimes the things they think students need and the things students need are different.
"Talk to your parents ask them for help and let them know what you need."
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