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MOTIVATION for Prelims: By Khushboo Gupta – AIR 80 in CSE 2018

MOTIVATION for Prelims

By Khushboo Gupta – AIR 80 in CSE 2018


Disclaimer : Views here are completely personal. May or May not apply to everyone.

Hey all! This is Khushboo Gupta – AIR 80 in UPSC CSE 2018.

Having passed from the phase of prelims twice, I am very much familiar with the butterflies in the stomach at this point of the time. I also understand what an Insights Motivation article, Harivansh Rai Bachchan’s famous “Koshish karne walon ki haar nahi hoti” poem, songs like “Lakshya” or two words from your younger siblings “Khench Didu” can do at critical times like these. When I see many aspirants around me feeling anxious, nervous, or in panic, it makes me realize that I have a sense of responsibility to share my own limited experiences and thoughts with all of you.

With less than 15 days remaining, you might feel as if suddenly many things have popped up which are yet to be touched, many concepts yet to be revised, many facts yet to be remembered, many tests yet to be taken. Only if we had few more months to go! But alas! Nobody has it! Nobody.

“There is no wine if grapes are not pressed, No perfume if flowers are not crushed. So, don’t be afraid if there are pressures in your life, It will bring the Best out of YOU!” – Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam

These 15 days have the potential to help you cross that cut-off of prelims which many fear to miss. These 15 days, you can either choose to have one full complete revision or you can get stressful and forget what you already revised. One who does the former will definitely have a better chance to clear.

Nervousness before any exam is a reality. It cannot be avoided. It is even helpful to some extent. It improves your efficiency. But beyond a certain level, it is harmful.

There were many things I did to avoid crossing that level.

First things first, I took prelims just like a test series paper. Only with the quality fully resembling to original UPSC exam (:P). This is how I tricked my brain to not panic on D-Day.
I wore the clothes which I used to wear daily, I carried an already used pen, no unnecessary relatives’ calls to say All the Best. These might seem little things but sometimes do wonders.

Second thing which I did was carrying the right amount of confidence to the exam center. It is very necessary specially for prelims because of the kind of guesses you are making. Neither you should be doubting each of your tricks in the paper, nor trusting each of your instincts. I know it is hard to balance, but one must try. Tell yourself on D-Day that you prepared to your maximum abilities, you have put your best foot forward in the preparation, there is nothing that will stop you now.

Start doubting your doubts!

Third thing, as much as getting proper sleep is recommended, don’t overstress on this. I am saying this from my own personal experience. In my first attempt, I took this statement very seriously and created a panic in my mind. Due to this, I couldn’t sleep the whole night and thus, More stress and panic! Thankfully, my family helped me calm down and understand that my lack of proper sleep won’t reduce any marks of mine, but my stress over it definitely will.

So just stay as calm as you can a day before. If possible, meditate. Try listening to soothing music. Don’t worry about the facts you fear to forget. These will be there in front of your eyes once you see the question with a calmer mindset.

“Self-control is Strength, Right Thought is mastery, CALMNESS is power!”

Let this calmness be your biggest power on D-Day.

Lastly, even with numerous things pending, you still have a great chance to clear the exam. Nobody goes for this exam with their best preparation. It depends on how you put on that paper.  As they say,

“Success does not lie in Results but in Efforts,
BEING the best is not so important,
DOING the best is all that matters..”

Finally, All the very best Folks! I hope you all come out with flying colors! May the force (of your hard work) be with you.