We have gone over once all major topics required to prepare for competitive examinations. Wherever you may go, whatever you may see, however you may strategise, finally everything comes down to the single point of your own effort. However intelligent and smart we might be, only studying the whole of our syllabus, revising periodically, and applying this knowledge correctly during exam is what will show our true wisdom in these examinations. 

One fine day, we realise that we have gained weight. We decide that with daily exercise and a healthy diet, we should reduce 5kgs in two weeks. We prepare all the timetables and materials needed for our goal. Everything is ready, but as long as we do not act as per our plan, our plan will remain only on paper. We won’t lose half a kilo for making the perfect timetable, or half kilo for having a strong body to begin with.  We will lose weight only if we put in effort as per our plan. Our success in competitive examinations is also similar. There is no way out, except to allot time properly and study our syllabus completely. Get down and study, that’s all! 

“I am ready to sit down and study, but my circumstances are not suitable” - don’t postpone your efforts by thinking on these lines. Only when we overcome tough situations do we rise from being ordinary people to extraordinary people. Courage to face obstacles, persistence in tough times, patience to wait for our time, integrity to never give up on our goal and dream no matter what - this is what is expected of a successful candidate in competitive examinations. This is also what is expected of us in the career that awaits us upon successfully passing the examination. Therefore, the qualities that are needed when we are higher government officials who perform important roles that affect many lives. If we develop such foundational qualities, necessary knowledge and wisdom will come to us automatically. 

It is essential to keep doing self assessments as to whether we are indeed proceeding as per timetable. Instead of creating a kind of fake self confidence by telling ourselves that we are studying well even when we have not done well in some subjects, it is essential to be honest with ourselves and answer questions such as, “are we proceeding as per timetable? Does the timetable need any change? Where all do we need to improve?”. If we keep doing this, we are sure to improve even in areas where we are weaker. 

When you prepare your timetable, be realistic and make sure your daily and weekly goal is to cover only what can practically be studied in the limited time. In stead of making ambitious plans loading our timetable beyond our capacity and ending up facing the exam unable to complete the syllabus or stick to our timetable, it is better to put only as much subjects in our timetable as suited for our ability, reach our daily goals in the given timeframe, and proceed towards success with confidence. It is essential to keep our mind upbeat while we prepare for competitive examinations. Stay a bit away from those who can negatively impact our mind, whoever they might be. 

Studying alone, studying with friends, studying only at home, joining a coaching centre, studying while employed, leaving the job and studying, are all acceptable depending on our mentality and situation. The important thing is only to study. 

Since lakhs of people appear in these examinations, surely every day and every moment we will have to face tough competition. Instead of falling in the web of “competition,” if we follow the path we have set for ourselves, persevering without worrying about success and failure, honestly, enthusiastically and confidently; then that path will lead us first to being better humans, and later surely to being achievers. 

The only dream we cannot attain is the dream we do not follow. Set off, towards your dreams!!

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