Exam season is a dreadful thing and as it approaches, you start experiencing it’s symptoms too! Worried mind, formulas and theorems flying in the air, uninvited headaches, sudden panic-attacks reminding you of the syllabus left, and even worse, panic-attacks reminding you that you don’t even know the names of your subjects, midnight nightmares waking you up as if you are late for your exam, or worse, dreams about you missing your exam and being left asleep in your oh-so-comfortable bed!
Subjects like – OOPS – give you a pregnant-feeling when you literally can’t recall it’s full-name and keep chanting – Oops, I don’t know anything! There are many more things that are on your mind when you think about the final exams, or boards (worse!). But what can one do in such a situation? This post is more of a handy-guidebook to the students who really want to focus more on study and less on external things.
Everyone has a phone, and of course, a phone without internet is just a metallic box, so everyone has a phone with internet these days, and not to forget, WhatsApp and Facebook are integral parts of our lives now. We can live without food for a week, but can’t survive without checking WhatsApp messages or Facebook notifications. Such addictions cause diversions and don’t let you put your mind into the prior thing – exams! You are checking your Facebook or WhatsApp every second, every time the phone beeps, even if it is some useless message from the subscriber-company asking you to take up a new scheme and watch Katrina Kaif videos in Re 1, you start browsing the phone more and end up spending three hours on the YouTube videos you ‘never’ thought you would end up watching (for instance, I was watching a Japanese Bath Bomb video at 04 in the morning when I was supposed to study for my exam at 08! Well, let’s spare the details please!)
More or less, having a phone near you affects your mind and your scores greatly. The more time you spend on phone, the less you’re studying. I do watch YouTube tutorials related to my subjects, but let’s be honest, that’s hardly 5% of the total percentage of videos watched in entire day! We all know, YouTube is a magical-maze and we never come out from the same door through which we got in. We have to click on the videos showing up on the side-window and we have to watch ‘How snails mate’ before we study our course syllabus! (Well, there are many other weird things which I should not discuss, thank you Internet!)
So, I conducted an experiment on myself this time. It was my fourth-semester of engineering examinations, and passing with difficulty in third semester had encouraged me a lot (yes, it encouraged me!), I wanted to score good this time and my smart-phone wouldn’t let me do that, I knew. So, I switched it off (yes), packed it up and gave it to my mom (YES!). The exams were on for two weeks, and that meant no internet, no phone, no calls, no messages, no Facebook, no Twitter, no WhatsApp, no Hay Day, no Candy-Crush, no We-Chat, no Instagram for two weeks. It was then, that I realized that so many things were holding me up and preventing me from studying. The list was long, and long enough for a person to fail!
Then I got to know that if I divide my daily schedule according to chapters that I had to prepare, I can do all the syllabus in day-time, without burning the midnight oil! Last night study is an excuse and an outcome of your personal choices, there’s no such thing as ‘Engineers are the only species who perform stunts like – Last Night Study!’ If we manage our time table well, and exclude the useless things for the time being, we can achieve great results and exams will no longer be a tiring or exhausting period. If you will focus on everything else but study, you will have to study hardest on the last night, and maybe leave some of the syllabus too, so that you can make an excuse that you had ‘no-time’. Having no time is nothing, but an excuse. We all have time, and more than enough of it, we just don’t realize it till the final few hours. I was a topper in my school time, and now if I recall that time, all I can say is that I was a topper, because I had no phone, no internet. Life was peaceful. The moment internet invaded our minds, we soaked ourselves into the illusions of the ‘web-world’ and compromised our ‘social-life’ for ‘life-on-social-platforms’.
Just study hard when you have your exams, and focus less on things that won’t be asked in the question paper! If you can’t, then go on an ‘Internet-Anshan’ and you’ll come out stronger and less dependent. The initial few days are the hardest as you will miss the ‘touch’ and you will want to see if you got any new messages on Facebook or WhatsApp, you will feel as if your phone is buzzing around and you will miss the message-beeps, but let me tell you – That is the challenge! You ‘have’ to control your inner emotions and you have to have a control over your mind and prevent yourself from becoming a slave to the internet. You’re the one who should be using the Internet and in any case, it should never be the other way round! If you think you’re addicted to it and can’t sleep or breathe without seeing messages or notifications, then take a break in your study schedule. Use your computer or laptop and check your social media accounts for a time limit, I kept it 20 minutes in one complete day, doesn’t matter if I use it for 20 minutes complete, or divide that time frame into four small sessions of 5 minutes each. It was fun, as I always had a track of time, I never misused or cheated because I knew I would end up screwing my results and not someone else’s, so why cheat? I also never felt restless or impatient as I checked my social accounts everyday. Slowly, as the exams started, I reduced the usage from 20 minutes a day, to 10 and then to 5 minutes only. And in final two exams, I did not switch my laptop on, which was an achievement for me!
I don’t ask you to boycott social media websites and internet entirely, but when you’re having exams and you can’t balance both the things well, boycott one thing completely and you’ll feel the difference yourself. There are people who can balance everything, this post isn’t for them as you’re perfect! And then there are extremists like me, who are selectively moody. The way out for me is boycotting my phone, so I can focus on exams, and it helped me a lot this time. I will surely update this post with my result after two/three months! Till then, just keep studying in your exams, and have a track of time while you’re using Internet.