Prepare to take your next promotion test as soon as possible after you meet the minimum time in rank requirements of your organization and you are able to properly perform the required techniques. Do not wait to be told to test, do not ask to test, and do not let other students discourage you from testing. Do not listen to the advice of anyone other than your instructor unless you personally respect his or her opinion. Being prepared and confident of your abilities is a part of testing requirements. Assume your skills are at the required level unless your instructor tells you differently. Your instructor should be giving you input on your status as the test date approaches.
Expect to pass the test but accept the fact that sometimes you may not advance. This may hurt your ego, but not your billfold. Most organizations will permit you to continue to test for the same rank until you advance, without paying another testing fee.
Advance as quickly as you can, even if you advance faster than your peers or senior belts in your dojang. The Peter Principle was developed to explain advancement in the business world, but it also applies to Taekwondo advancements. The principle states that people will advance to their highest level of competence, or to their level of incompetence. Some Taekwondo students reach their level of competence and will never be able to advance any higher. Some students reach their level of incompetence, meaning they are promoted until they are at a rank they cannot handle (actually, they should be reduced to the rank at which they are competent, but this never happens). Do not be concerned about surpassing these people; just try to reach your own level of competence.
Do not stress out before the test
As you near the actual test date, expect your instructor to get more "nit-picky." Just before tests, instructors tend to get more serious, sterner, and less humorous. Tests not only judge your skill improvement, they also judge your instructor's ability to help you gain the improvement. Therefore, your instructor wants you do your best at the test for it shows he or she has done his or her job correctly. Your instructor may increase your training intensity and become hyper critical in the days before a test. This helps ensure you will do your best at the test, but it also helps the instructor decide whether you should even be allowed to take the test. The instructor is testing your resolve, to see if you are ready for the next belt level. Do not take the increased training and criticism "personally" and get "stressed." The instructor is doing it for your own good. Take the criticism to heart, and use it for self-improvement. After the test, your instructor will return to his or her old self. Many times, the first couple of weeks of training after a test are more relaxed than usual. Then the cycle starts all over again.
Ensure you know exactly how the test will progress. Practice all the procedures so you will be confident even when under the stress of the test. Know the procedure to use when you totally screw up a pattern and must stop. Be prepared for all contingencies. Your instructor will tell you most everything you need to know before a test, but anticipate problems you may have and ask your instructor what you should do in those circumstances.
Do not change your routine
Do not change your daily routine before a test, such as diet or sleep patterns. Do not start something new or stop something old the week before a test, such as adding more exercise or stopping smoking.
Eat plenty complex carbohydrates the night before a test, such as pasta. Eat a light meal just before a test, keeping in mind when you will need the energy.