Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Fighting The Good Fight

Scores were released today.

While I’m not waiting on scores, I feel affected by my friends from twitter who are receiving scores also.

Unfortunately it seems like this window wasn’t a good one. And I can relate.

I know it sounds cliché, but now is not the time to give up. There are a number of reasons why you could give up. But just think about it. Giving up is taking the easy way out. What do you have to do to give up? You basically just put the books down and go back to life as you know it. Some of us may go back to our favorite hobbies, or some of us may just go back to that dreadful job. Giving up just says you know what “ I’m done with this” and “I’m not made for the long haul”. Atleast that’s what I told myself. However wiping your tears means YOU ARE THE MINORITY. Look how many people work in the accounting field. Now look at how many are CPA’s? Not many. Just think after your done with the CPA you can go back to your favorite hobbies or you can go back to that dreadful job, but either way your going back as a CPA. And let me tell you, telling your co-workers

(who I might add may not be as supportive or happy for you as you would like) is a great feeling. Now I’m in no means saying you should go and boast about it (because I’m the total opposite, I was actually very shy to tell people) but it’s a really big accomplishment

The hardest part of dealing with this exam from my experience was the mental toll. I CONSTANTLY had feelings of inadequacy. And yes I did have that urge often to give up. However I kept reminding myself of the lifelong benefit I would have once I was done. The opportunities are endless.

Studying really hard and then failing is a gut wrenching feeling. I was/am the Queen of a good cry. You have to let all your frustration and anger out. I must have called the AICPA and NASBA and the anyone else who was responsible for those ugly MCQ’s and Sims every ugly name in the book (sorry but its true). After cursing them until my tongue fell off and my eyes were as red as they could be and a whole box of tissue later. It was back to the drawing board. With BEC I went to the drawing board three times. It was there that I drilled down on my weak areas. When I drilled down I just basically read up on a topic word for word. Then I explained it back to myself as if I was teaching a class. Once I could explain it to myself I felt a little better. Explaining it to myself meant that I had a chance of atleast talking my way to the right answer during test time. The BIGGEST BIGGEST mistake I made with BEC was studying what I do know as opposed to studying what I don’t know. For example I was pretty good in economics but why in the hell was I doing a million economics questions and 10 capital budgeting questions. I look back at it now and it was a sort of a fear of facing reality that I really sucked at capital budgeting and I had to put in some hard core studying to atleast feel comfortable with it.My third time around I did a million capital budgeting questions and not so much economic questions. Initially I was studying like I would get lucky on the test, meaning “hopefully I won’t get that many capital budgeting questions so I will just do a little of them and then cross my fingers I get lucky” uhhhh that was a #Fail

One of the biggest realizations I had to come to terms with is the way I absorb info may be different from the way someone else does. It was this reason I had to change review courses. If you recognize something isn’t working and your financially able then don’t be afraid to scrap that course and go with another. If your not able to then you have to figure out how you can make it work for you. Either you can take more note cards, or do more questions, etc. Whatever has to be done just do it. And also there are so many websites you can use a resource. For example most of my help from capital budgeting came from just using Google and learning from there (since I felt like reading the same thing over and over after the third try was getting me nowhere).

The one thing I really want to stress is to not doubt yourself. You have to alteast tell yourself you have a shot at being a CPA just like anyone else. Again this may sound cliché but you can do it!!! I kept reminding myself that I didn’t need to be a expert in every topic I just need to recognize it when I see it and be able to make some sort of sense out of it. The exam is about knowing a little about a lot. Getting too in depth isn’t necessarily a bad thing but if your focusing your time on being an expert in one area and then in other areas your mind draws a blank your study plan needs to be revised.

Now I look back at all my trials and tribulations and some stories I can laugh at. For example I remember when I failed BEC with a 70 and I called my Mom of course crying and barely able to breathe. I told her to wait awhile before she told my Dad and my siblings because I needed time to get myself together. Of course as soon as I hung up the phone with her my Dad calls telling me how sorry he was (that made me cry even more) and then as soon as my Dad hung up, here goes my sister calling!!! I’m like Thanks Mom…can I catch a break.

If you didn’t get that passing grade this window take a couple of days to regroup. Don’t beat yourself up too much. The next step is to revise revise revise your study plan. Don’t beat yourself up about the points you didn’t get look at the points you did get and just build upon that. The goal is to build on top of what you know. Because in the end you know something you just need to know a little more.

Anyway I say all this to say, that yes it totally sucks right now. To fail feels like absolute crap. Your probably beating yourself up. But just know failure is temporary (unless you give up) but being a CPA is permanent.

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