Are you putting off doing things that need your attention? The CAT exam 2022 is just round the corner. So we decided to share with you 11 hacks to stop procrastination during CAT preparation.
The CAT exam is a crucial step for the IIM aspirants. It is an aptitude test that consists of three sections – verbal ability and reading comprehension, logical reasoning and data interpretation, and quantitative ability. And the syllabus of which is undefined. Students preparing for the CAT exam usually follow the pattern and questions by working on the previous year’s question papers.
Although CAT is one of the toughest exams, there is no pre-defined syllabus for its preparation. Students preparing for CAT get anxious, stressed, and start over-thinking as the exam approaches near. To keep you on track throughout CAT preparation, we bring you valuable advice. But first, let’s consider the reasons why students appearing for CAT procrastinate?
Why Do CAT Aspirants Procrastinate?
Apart from their regular study pressure, students go through a lot of emotional turmoil when they begin CAT preparations. There are thoughts of family expectations and fear of failure disturbing their mental peace. And a lot of ‘what if’s’ running through their mind.
- What if I am not able to crack the exam?
- What if I do not score well?
- What if I fail drastically?
- What if there is no second chance?
- What if I sabotage my career plans?
- What if I cannot fulfil my family’s expectations?
Could you place your finger on any one point or all the above-mentioned points? If yes, keep reading till the end.
What is Procrastination?
Simply, procrastination is the act of delaying or putting off something that requires your immediate attention. When you know what needs to be done at the moment, but you voluntarily decide to postpone the task indefinitely, you have parked your mind in the arena of procrastination.
It is not a good place to be, especially when you have started preparing for a CAT exam or are in the middle of CAT preparation. It is a dangerous place to be when your life’s major decision of career choice depends on the present time.
Why Can’t The Aspirants Stop Procrastination During CAT Preparation?
Students or working professionals, who are preparing for the CAT exam, may delay their study plans for various reasons. After understanding how the aspirants feel during exam preparation, we realized the prime reasons for procrastination, and they are:
|Lack of focus|
|Depletion of energy|
|Inability to concentrate|
|No specific strategy plan for exam|
Do you resonate with any of the reasons listed above? If yes, let’s help you become productive, as the CAT exam 2022 is just round the corner, and you can’t afford to give up on your dreams now.
How to Be Productive? — 11 Hacks To Stop Procrastination During CAT Preparation
As the CAT exam time nears, so does our fears that start surfacing. When we act on fear, many a time we decide to give up on our most awaited ambitions. Hence, procrastination! We understand that most of you are going through this phase, as the CAT 2022 exam is approaching in 2 months. Listed below are 11 hacks to stop procrastination during CAT exam preparation:
Set Your Priorities In Place
To appear in the CAT exam, preparations begin as early as 12 months before the exam is scheduled. Once you decide and start your journey as a CAT aspirant, it becomes essential to set your priorities in place. Make a list of things, books, study material that you would need to start your learning journey. Next, on the basis of what needs more attention to prepare, divide your time. Apart from prioritizing your study material, also prioritize your other commitments daily. This will reduce your work load, helping you complete your tasks in the designated time. Less pressure will not let you slip in a zone where you feel a need to put off working on things that require your attention.
It is best to keep your smartphones away while you are studying. Social media is the biggest distraction in today’s times. Set aside a time during the day to check your phone, emails, and messages. Inform your family and friends not to disturb you during your study hours. Avoid keeping television or PlayStation in your study area. When we remove distractions, we concentrate, and focus better on what we are doing at the moment.
Me-Time To Contemplate
Every day, spend some time with yourself. Contemplate on the tasks you have accomplished, the study material you have revised, and review the performance of your mock tests. Now, think and decide on what changes your study strategy plan needs. Make amendments and approach your CAT preparation accordingly. Keeping track of your growth will help you understand the areas you need to work hard on.
We all require a little push when we feel low or disheartened. People who are in the same place as you, are in a place to understand the roller coaster of your emotions. Join CAT support groups or CAT crash courses. This will not only help you stay inspired, but also help you track your progress weekly.
Stop Negative Self-talk And Overthinking
While preparing for the CAT exam, it is essential that you keep negative self-talk at bay. For this, avoid meeting people who discourage you or demean your efforts. Try to push your negative self-inflicted thoughts and fears pertaining to CAT exam out of your mind. Take baby steps. The minute you feel low, and your mind starts thinking the worst, bring your attention back to why you started preparing for the CAT exam. Replace your hopeless thoughts with productive actions. Look at self-growth and pat yourself for coming this far. Don’t overthink, we are all a work in progress.
You have already wasted enough time procrastinating. With some support and tiny steps, you are trying to get yourself out of this situation. You know the time is running out, and you blame yourself. This is a slippery area. Once you get on the road to guilt-trip, it will be worse than procrastination. Remember, there will be productive days and unproductive days. Don’t push yourself to the edge for not doing your best on some days. It’s okay. Pick up the momentum from where you left, and scale for progression.
Design a Study Plan
It’s a human tendency to avoid doing things that we lack clarity on. Preparing for a significant exam like CAT, you need to have a clear understanding of the process of preparation, study material and mode of study, like self-study or joining a CAT exam course. Once you know how to proceed, make a study plan and revise it from time-to-time to improve your strategy.
If we do all the work ourselves, we deplete our share of energy. It is better to delegate work that does not require your attention or involvement. Reserve energy to study, as you will have to spend 3 to 6 hours for CAT preparation, depending on what stage of preparation you are, and the duration left for attempting the CAT exam.
Lack of motivation makes our actions fruitless and monotonous. At the beginning, it will be easier to stay inspired and focused, as everything looks great to start. Eventually, it will begin to feel like a repetitive and boring activity. To stay self-motivated, watch inspiring TED talks or read success stories of previous CAT aspirants.
Set Achievable Targets
We love to set targets. However, we get disappointed when we fail to achieve those in the desired time. Keep updating your targets weekly. If you are not able to achieve them on time, it means either you have set the bar too high or you have set unreasonable goals. Break your daily targets into smaller, achievable goals. Pat your back, reward yourself with your favourite ice-cream, milkshake, or favourite cuisine when you attain your weekly goals on time.
Professional Support For Anxiety
When felt in moderation, anxiety is a healthy emotion, like first job interviews, first day in the new college, or nervousness during exam days. If you show symptoms of stress, irritation over trivial issues, or emotional outbursts on a regular basis, it is time to seek professional help. Anxiety can make you less productive with days to come. And not asking for help can worsen your situation.
As a CAT aspirant, whatever stage of preparation you may be at, it is important that you stop procrastination at the onset of its first signs. The CAT preparation is a journey. Don’t worry about the outcome. Just enjoy the process.
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