When I was invited to write an article for this wonderful blog, I really didn’t know what the topic should be. We aren’t ever short of advice – is anyone? Ever? No, the problem was more about what to write that would set the tone for the following instalments. Advice is of no use if it is not followed up by regular and sustained action. And what do you need to be “on the ball”? According to yours truly, it is a desire for excellence.
But excellence doesn’t come in a day. It is shaped by a ruthless, single-minded adherence to a cause. Excellence, as Aristotle had observed many centuries ago, is a Habit. Live excellence. And it will be yours. When preparing for exams – domestic or overseas – give your all. The outcome may not be under your control; but how much effort you put in surely is. This effort consists of two elements – HARD WORK & ANALYSIS. Together they make a package that goes by the fancy name of STRATEGY.
There is no substitute for hard work. At least 2 hours daily, over a month or more, depending on the kind of exam you are attempting. SAT, PTE, IELTS, TOEFL, TOEIC – for these 1 month is enough. However, for GMAT, GRE or CAT, you will surely need a 4-6-month preparation period.
However, don’t just practice endlessly. Analyse your mistakes and learn from them. Everyone fails. Failure is only the flip side of success. But those who eventually make the cut, actually find out WHY they have erred at certain places. Man has been able to conquer the world because of his sheer intellectual prowess. It is a god-given gift that distinguishes us from the monkey and the ape. Make good use of it.
When hard work and intelligence
Work hand in hand,
Many things are possible.
– Dr T. P. Chia