As soon as the lockdown began, the idea that I should do a piece on how to use the lockdown entered my mind and I began writing it as well but somehow I lost interest mid-way. Something inside me told me that I will be doing a post just for the sake of doing a post, I will not be solving any problem since as far as CAT Prep goes there is no problem.
If anything most CAT aspirants should have it better since you have at the least been saving the time it takes to commute. I can only hope the real problem — the loss of livelihood — which affects unorganized workers (who constitute 80% of our workforce of 470 million) — is something the readers of this blog and other CAT aspirants have not had to face.
So I thought the best thing to do would be to stay silent and let everyone, including myself, respond to these ten days and in the process learn a bit about themselves.
Some of you might be working in firms or fields where you have been inundated with work since the lockdown (the tech team that worked on the launch of our live portal barely slept for the last ten days and so has my team) so the post does not apply to you.
What does the mirror show you?
The lockdown (for the fortunate few) is no different from being offered a suitcase full of money, how have you spent it the first third of that money?
You have a goal — to get into IIM-A — how did you respond during the lockdown so far towards achieving that goal?
I do not need to list out all the things that you might have done, suffice to say that by now you should know the distance between your stated goals and your actions and more importantly the futility of those actions in the face of your dreams for your life.
There is nothing to be gained from watching more videos of Federer and worshipping him, he has made the most out of his life.
The TV shows make the careers of those who work on them, not yours.
The food shows just keep putting the cart before the horse.
All of us tell ourselves we want to do XYZ but we do not have the time to do it, the problem is with the world not with you. The lockdown really asks you to face up to the truth — is the problem the world or is the problem you?
Deep down inside each of one us knows what we need to do, even how we need to do it, and how much leeway we are allowed to have some fun and relaxation.
If you cannot make a plan for your day and manage the same then you can forget managing firms in the future.
Those who have asked their maids to also stay at home to practice social distancing will by now know that running a house is also a question of non-stop end-to-end optimisation and your mom never needed YouTube videos to figure that out.
You have wasted a third does not mean that the next two weeks need to be wasted.
You have used the first week reasonably well, it does not mean that you have found the optimal solution, see if you want to reverse your schedule and see if that works.
If you have found your best schedule then stick to it, it takes 21 days for a habit to get fully formed and it takes longer for you to see any tangible change.
The first target is simple — be ready to take SimCAT 1 scheduled to be conducted from 24-29 April.
Being ready for SimCAT 1 means knowing all the concepts and approaches to well enough to solve all the easy problems across all areas.
You can do this just by watching all the videos on the LEARN Module of myIMS. Spending just 2 hours every day from today will be more than enough for you to finish being concept-ready.
If you have finished the concept videos, then there enough and more practice problems to get ready for SimCAT 1.
If you have more time on your hands then there is no better time than this to read the books outlined in this post — https://thecatwriter.com/2017/04/22/preparing-for-an-mba-and-not-just-the-cat/
You can either use these upcoming weeks to the fullest or find yourself exactly in the same spot one year from now and with less time on your hands and more guilt on your mind.
Do not forget — practice is theory.