Growing up, every time I’d leave the house for an exam, and even today, among many other things, my mom would always tell me, “Don’t forget to breathe!” Probably because during exam days, I was usually on the verge of a breakdown and too stressed out to relax and take a deep breath. Back in the day, I used to laugh it off, because honestly it felt like a joke. I’d roll my eyes as it sounded so unbelievably clichéd.
However, one day, while sitting down during my Introduction to Political Science exam, I actually followed her supposedly funny and mainstream advice and set out time for “breathing.” Every once in a while during the exam, I would put my pen down and follow a systematic breathe-in-breathe-out pattern. While a few students around me did look at me in a funny way, I continued with my breathing exercise, so I could go home and tell my mom how weird and impractical her advice was.