Replace pre-exam fear, anxiety & stress with awareness, positivity & discipline

Exam season is just around the corner! As it is, the year gone by has been stressful on many levels and regular student routines, classroom learnings and exam preparations have been disrupted and now it’s time for tclasshe BIG MOMENT – Exams!!!

We recommend replacing stressful pre-exam triggers with positive practices for exam success:

1. Replace fear with awareness
2. Replace anxiety with positivity
3. Replace stress with discipline

Replace fear with awareness 
Awareness is the first step toward any progression in life. Let’s remember that every action has an equal and opposite reaction. This is one of the simple rules by which the world works. For example – if you have a Mathematics examination coming up and you have been concentrating during the class, completing all the assignments on time and spending around 30 minutes everyday on practicing your numbers, the journey toward your goal of doing well in your exam will be easier because you have already put in the correct actions to expect a positive reaction. If you have been distracted during class, missing your assignments and avoiding disciplined practice, you have to work harder now to catch up!

In this context, awareness means looking at your study schedule with integrity and making a plan to improve yourself and reach your goal faster. If you find yourself struggling with motivation, talk to friends or teachers or reach out to mentors to help you plan your study schedule based on where you are. Asking for guidance and help is not a sign of weakness but an inherent sign of strength. This awareness will hold you in good stead when you enroll yourself in courses like engineering, or alternatives to engineeringjob training programs etc. Be aware of what your goal is for your exams, and beyond, and understand where you are in the journey towards reaching it.

Replace anxiety with positivity
In the days leading up to your exams, avoid any triggers that induce anxiety in you.
For example – the world will not come to an end if you reduce the amount of time spent reading
COVID-19 related news and playing videogames for a month. Deliberating about continuous news feeds, will trigger unnecessary anxiety within you which does nothing to help you with your exams. Plus, the video games you are playing are firing your neurons and making you too tired to concentrate when you eventually have to sit down to study.

Instead, make a list of simple things that will boost positivity in your daily routine and will help your mind focus when it needs to study. This includes exercise, spending time in nature, any meditative practice, deep breathing, Yoga, chanting or pursuing any creative hobby of yours.

Surround yourself with positive people who believe in your success and avoid talking to people who drain you off your positive energy. Better still, get yourself a study buddy – someone who has similar academic goals as yourself and mutually report your project and plan with each other.  Aim high alongside motivated people who would like to be associated with esteemed institutions like those who aspire to get a degree from BITS Pilani or a Sastra University degree certificate.

Replace stress with discipline 
Stress is not exclusively for adults. It can affect children and youth as well! Did you know that chronic stress can lead to inflammation, depression and disease? Every lethargic action and negative thought of ours affects our body and mind in subtle ways that impede our eventual success. While stress cannot be 100% avoided, disciplined routines can combat stress and boost well-being and productivity.

Research indicates that it takes around 21-48 days for the human mind to adapt well to a routine. Take for example, the simple act of brushing your teeth. You have been doing this as soon as you wake up in the morning, ever since you were a child, so much so that it has become a natural part of your life. You will certainly not hear anyone say that they find it stressful to brush their teeth? They just do it. Similarly, if you continually repeat routines in your day – they will become natural extensions of your life.

What are some of the routines you can add to your life? Continually practice the habit of allotting specific times for practicing your Mathematics, reading motivational texts or practicing your music in time slots of 25 minutes a day. Remember how we spoke about the Pomodoro technique in a previous blog! How about taking a 21-day challenge of waking up at 5.00 am every day to study.

While the time period leading up to exams are usually associated with fear, anxiety, stress and tension, a powerful combination of a shift in our attitude and simple lifestyle routines can help us associate this time period as one of awareness, positivity and discipline. Whatever your future goals are post high-school, be it enrolling in college or an early career program like HCL TechBee – these positive practices will help you stay focused and productive whatever you choose to do.

Wishing you the best of luck for your successful exam preparation and performance!

Do creativity and technology go hand-in-hand?

What do we think of when we hear the word ‘creativity’? Well, we usually end up thinking of something related to arts – paintings, poetry, storytelling or storywriting, music or sculpting?
Why do people not think of technology and creativity together in the same breath? Did you know that programming is an extremely creative profession as well ? When you see an amazing entertainment resource or a platform that helps artists express themselves creatively – remember that there are awesome programmers behind it all! Not only that, programming is a logical and creative way to find solutions to problems.

Let’s look at some innovative creative platforms and the programming technology that backs them up.

Entertainment Streaming Platforms 
Can you even imagine contemporary entertainment without video on-demand services and streaming platforms! How would we have even managed to get through COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown dominated 2020 without entertainment at the touch of our fingertips? Have you ever wondered what programming drives these?

Let’s look at some popular platforms and a sampling of some of the software programs they use. While Disney+ Hotstar uses cloud-based infrastructure, DevOps and AI-enabled operations, Netflix relies heavily on Python and AWS infrastructure to give users the best viewing experience. Amazon Prime uses Amazon Web Service (AWS) Cloud as the base technology for all its services and AWS Elemental for live encoding and packaging to deliver premium video experiences.

The world of gaming is both exciting and fascinating with programming providing the crucial framework for all the games we play. While the industry employs both game designers and programmers, both roles require knowledge of what the other is doing and multi-skilled employees are valued in this sector. The gaming industry uses ‘systems’ programming and ‘web’ programming; the former used to run games on separate applications like phones or a computers and the latter enabling games across Internet interfaces like a web browser.
While game designers come up with the most innovative virtual worlds for players to dive into, it is programmers who breathe life into this world and make it fully functional. Currently, the languages that form the bedrock of game design include C++, Java, HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript and SQL.

Collaborative Graphic Design 
Multi-dimensional websites like Canva provides designers with tools and templates to create posters, logos, cards, presentations etc. While categories include social media post designs, marketing collateral, document and advertisement designs, users can choose from free templates or select to subscribe to a premium account. The platform offers a range of free photos and illustrations and options for graphic design teams to work collaboratively.

On the frontend, Canva depends on HTML5, CSS3 and JavaScript and widely uses Ajax and jQuery on the interface. For their backend, they initially used PHP as a foundation and later introduced more features with Node.js. Python and Ruby on Rails are used for analytics. Other programs that help run this service include WordPress, WebPack, SaSS and Gulp. Do you dream of creating a magnificent resource like Canva? Well, you can if you become an expert in JavaScript and PHP to begin with!

Creativity is an important aspect of Programming 
One of the biggest misconceptions about software development is that it is not a creative profession. There is creativity every step of way in programming! After all, the most creative platforms in the world are widely used because of the technology behind them! Today, the tech industry provides artists, gamers and entertainment professionals across the world, durable platforms to promote their talents and arts.

There are many reasons why people choose a career in tech and more often than not, it is because it seems a safe or popular option. However, for those bursting with creative ideas, a career in tech will give you many opportunities to unleash the creative genius within you.

At HCL Technologies, we have many programs and platforms to help you explore the logical and creative aspects of technology. Be it expanding your communication skills, learning about the latest innovations or being a part of a community that does outreach projects – there is something for everyone at HCL.

HCL technologies focuses on the values of Courage and Care that motivates us to Collaborate to stay as one of the top global technology companies in the digital age. These are the ‘values’ that HCL values as a company and these are the values that we look out for in the people who work for us. Guess what? All of these values are already within you and with the right attitude and dedication, will find ways to flourish and grow.

Common misconceptions about tech careers and how to avoid them

Let’s look at some common misconceptions about technology careers and how we can develop a more holistic understanding of the same.

Firstly, let’s understand what misconceptions are. They are views and opinions that are incorrect based on faulty thinking or understanding. When we begin to believe them and propagate them, it leads to unconscious bias and disharmony in the workplace and society. It is very important from a young age to understand the difference between misconceptions and facts.
A simple example of a misconception could be that cameras with more megapixels take better pictures. Did you know that the quality of a camera is influenced by the sensor quality and quality of lenses over megapixels? Many people buy expensive phones and cameras without knowing or researching this fact.

We must not form our views based on assumptions, and misconceptions. Why? This matters because our ideas and thoughts contribute to the community we study or work in, which in turn impacts society. Here are some examples of misconceptions about careers in technology. Let’s not fall prey to them!

Some common misconceptions in tech careers are:

Tech careers mean only programming
Tech careers include programming and much more. Working in tech gives us the opportunity to look at the world a whole new way and find out innovative ways to make things work. Tech careers empower students and candidates to believe that they have the capacity to solve problems that matter to them and their societies. People in tech careers do not sit in isolation and code in a dark room. They attend meetings, make presentations, work with international teams and upgrade their skills consistently.

You need to be good in Math to work in Tech
While those who are good with numbers have an edge while learning coding, one does not have to be good at Math to be successful in a tech career. Programs like JavaScript call for creativity and logic over numerical skills.

Tech jobs are not creative
This could not farther than the truth! Tech programmers write code that build spaceships, make interactive gaming fun and find creative ways to make life easier for users. User Experience, Web development, Digital Marketing, Product Design and App Development are some of the most creative fields today to express yourself in.

Only students from Engineering backgrounds can work in Technology
Do you know that the tech ecosystem is made of students from various backgrounds including English literature, liberal arts and political science? Technology companies not only have software development and engineering roles but also various functions important functions like Administration, Finance, Product Support and Human Resources. We live in the Internet age where the right passion and training can help anyone with the right attitude explore working across different functions.

Women are not meant to succeed in tech-careers like men
The tech world has many women leaders who inspire young talent everyday. Progressive technology companies across the world are transparent about their workforce diversity practices and encourage more women to join the tech field because in such professional companies, gender does not matter. There is a global drive across the world to recruit more women in STEM – Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics programs and inspire them to contribute in the field of technology. Women and men are equally capable of high performance in tech roles.

HCL Technologies focuses on the values of Courage and Care that motivates us to Collaborate to stay as one of the top global technology companies in the digital age. These are the ‘values’ that HCL values as a company and these are the values that we look out for in the people who work for us. Guess what? All of these values are already within you and with the right attitude and dedication, will find ways to flourish and grow