Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” – Robert Collier
Preparing for a tough exam like the UPSC requires a lot of study time. Candidates often need to spend many hours studying. This extensive preparation is a cornerstone of success in such a high-stakes exam.
Studying for exams like the UPSC is hard, especially for people who are also working. For these working students, managing time well is very important. Specially, if you are taking UPSC online coaching. They need to learn how to use their time efficiently. This helps them study better. They need to stay focused and avoid distractions. Distractions can stop them from preparing well. It’s important for them to make the most of their study time.
Based on my experience as a teacher at IAS coaching in Delhi and exam taker, I created some simple but effective study methods. These strategies focus on concentrated studying. They are easy to follow and really work well. I fondly refer to these strategies as the “5-S” method.
This method holds particular relevance for candidates who have opted for Sociology or Management as their optional subject. The likelihood is high that they are already familiar with this framework.
This idea started in Japan to make tasks or projects more organized. The main goal is to increase productivity. It creates a clean, safe, and clutter-free environment.
The 5S methodology is known for its simplicity and effectiveness. It has been proven successful many times. Especially notable are the entrepreneurs who have used these principles to significantly grow and expand their businesses.
Having personally implemented these fundamental steps, I am now a firm believer in the power of these five principles. They are not just business tools but are equally effective for UPSC aspirants. These principles can enable students to sit for extended periods and engage in deep, focused study.
In this blog post, I am going to delve into these strategies in greater detail. My goal is to give you helpful tips for your exam preparation. These tips will help you cover the syllabus effectively. They are designed to fit within your set study time. These insights, I believe, will be a valuable addition to your UPSC preparation arsenal.
Step No 01: Sort Your Study Material
Starting a task like preparing for the UPSC exam needs a planned approach. Being organized is the first important step. This step involves sorting and categorizing different things. You have to decide what is important and what is not. This process includes organizing your study materials well. It also means arranging the tools you need. And it’s about picking the best place to study. All these help in setting up a good study routine.
You might be curious about the importance of this step. The key lies in the concept of simplification. UPSC aspirants often feel overwhelmed at the start of their study sessions. This is because of the huge amount of books and materials they have to study. This can be quite discouraging, creating a mental barrier even before the actual studying begins.
Imagine, if you sit down to study with a carefully selected, concise set of books and materials. This approach eases the mental load. Making it more manageable for you to digest and plan your study sessions. It helps in mentally breaking down the topics you are about to delve into. Thus, making the whole process more approachable and less daunting.
It is very helpful to keep only necessary books and materials on your study desk. These should match your goals for the session. This way, you avoid things that aren’t needed. You can then focus only on what you plan to learn. This method removes distractions. It helps you concentrate better. Your study becomes more efficient. This makes each study session more effective.
Step No 02: Set the order to simplify
The next important step in your preparation is creating an order or ‘arrangement’. This step is crucial but often ignored. Many UPSC aspirants face a big challenge. They lose a lot of time and effort looking for the right study materials. This happens when their resources aren’t well-organized. Often, their books and materials are spread out in different places. Not having an organized study space causes this problem. Proper organization can save time and make studying more efficient.
To study efficiently and cover the syllabus well, it’s important to organize your study materials systematically. You should arrange your resources, materials, and books in a specific place. This helps in keeping everything in order and easy to find. This organization should not be seen as a one-time task but as an integral part of your daily study routine.
Think about how much smoother your study sessions will be the next day. You can easily access all the materials you need without any trouble. You save time by not having to search through unsorted materials. This saved time can be used for more productive study activities.
It is very helpful to add a new habit to your daily routine. Choose the resources you need for the next day and arrange them neatly. This simple habit can make your study sessions much more effective. You’ll spend more time learning and less time organizing.
Step No 03: Shine the study space
Growing up, many of us were frequently reminded about the importance of maintaining cleanliness in our homes. This principle, ingrained in us since childhood, holds true and is equally applicable in our work or study environments. The idea behind this is simple but important. A clean and organized space helps clear our thoughts and refresh our minds.
When we ensure that our study or work area is neat and tidy, it does more than just improve the physical appearance of the space. It actually fosters a sense of positivity and well-being. An environment of cleanliness and order greatly improves our ability to concentrate and focus. It’s not just about keeping the space physically clean. It’s about creating an atmosphere that helps our mind be clear and ready. This helps us to absorb new information better.
Therefore, it’s beneficial to adopt the practice of keeping your study area meticulously tidy. By doing so, you create a space that is conducive to effective and prolonged study sessions. A tidy study environment reduces distractions and interruptions. This lets you focus better and study more efficiently. Making cleanliness a regular part of your study routine is important. It keeps your study space calm and concentrated, aiding your UPSC exam preparation.”
Step No 04: Standardize your schedule
Having diligently implemented the aforementioned strategies, the next crucial step in your UPSC preparation journey is to establish a well-organized daily routine. As I’ve emphasized before, effective time management is a cornerstone in preparing for a competitive exam like the UPSC. It’s not just about cramming in study hours, but about optimizing your entire day for peak productivity and mindfulness.
Crafting a structured schedule for your daily activities is instrumental in enhancing the efficiency of your study sessions. Moreover, it ensures that you remain conscious and present in all aspects of your day-to-day life, not just during study hours. This holistic approach to time management recognizes the importance of balance – balancing intense study periods with other vital aspects of your life, including periods of rest and rejuvenation.
It’s wise to set aside specific times for different activities each day. This planning should cover all parts of your day. It goes beyond just your study schedule. Make sure to include time for relaxation and hobbies. Don’t forget to allocate time for exercise and other personal interests. By doing this, you add structure to your day. You also make sure you have enough time to relax and recharge. This helps maintain a balance between studying and your personal life. This organized approach will greatly help your overall preparation for the UPSC exam.
Step No 05: Sustain your efforts
Finally, it’s crucial to understand that the effectiveness of these techniques hinges on your consistent application of them. Preparing for an examination as demanding and extensive as the UPSC is undeniably a long and challenging journey. It requires not just a fleeting burst of motivation but a sustained, determined effort to thoroughly cover the syllabus and gain a deep understanding of all the topics involved.
Many aspirants begin their preparation journey with high levels of enthusiasm and motivation. However, it’s common to see this initial fervor wane as they progress, often leading to a sense of discouragement or burnout midway. This is a critical juncture where the true test of determination and consistency comes into play.
To overcome this hurdle, it is essential to steadfastly adhere to the techniques and strategies you’ve set for yourself. Consistency in your efforts will be the key to maintaining momentum throughout your preparation. Additionally, careful planning and structuring of your schedule are paramount. This planning should not only encompass the completion of the syllabus but also include revision and self-assessment phases. By doing so, you ensure that no topic is left unattended, and you gradually build up the confidence needed to successfully tackle the UPSC examination.
Remember, the journey to clearing the UPSC exam is as much about persistence and regularity in your efforts as it is about the strategies you employ. Stay committed, follow your planned routine, and with consistent effort, you’ll significantly increase your chances of success in this challenging endeavor.
You Can Read Also: What Makes The UPSC Civil Services Aspirants Win Or Lose?
Advice to the aspirants
“I highly recommend that aspirants follow these steps to study well for their exams. Using the 5S method is really important. This includes organizing your schedule. It also means standardizing your routine, and sustaining your efforts. This helps in making a neat and tidy study space. It’s not just about keeping your room tidy. It also helps clear your mind and makes studying more effective.
By adding these methods to your daily routine and working hard, you improve your chances in the UPSC exam. Success comes from the small, consistent steps you take. These steps make a big difference in your preparation. Always keep your focus sharp and your efforts steady.
Following this disciplined approach brings you closer to becoming an administrative officer. These strategies help you handle the vast syllabus. They also build the resilience and mental strength you need. Stay dedicated and focused on your goal. Soon, your dream of joining the administrative services will become true.