Motivation for IAS – How to keep going?

” If you want something you have never had, do something you have never done.”

Civil Services Examination, touted as the mother of all exams, is a tough nut to crack largely because of the immense competition. Out of 4-5 lac, only 1000 make it to the services and only 100 to IAS. With such a dog-eat-dog competition, being callous about preparation can cost you a lot. Thus, hard work in this exam is imperative for success

But does hard work suffice? Certainly not. It is also the frame of mind with which you approach the exam. And that requires a good intended Motivation. This post is going to be your vital dose of Vitamin M (M for Motivation).

Why did you even sn

Civil Services is NOT the only career option for people in their 20s then why did you choose it after all? I will talk of my personal instance, I had no such intent of social service or public good when I started. I had a simple objective of gaining authority to make impact that would make me a strong professional. I also see the IAS Association as a gateway to strong networks. The fraternity is a well-read one and consequently you get aptly cultured. This is particular to the services, unparalleled by no other job.
Now ask this question to yourself. Why civil services? Take a day or two if it doesn’t come to you instantly. Spend time thinking about it.

Work now, saviour forever.

Honestly, I was intimidated by the hard work the exam requires. That’s precisely why it took me three years after graduation to take the plunge. But believe me, hard work pays. Just brace yourself to study 10-hours a day for a year and be assured of being duly rewarded. Nothing else matters, everything else can wait. A good career will ensure that you have everything- repute, authority, professional network, compatible and equally equipped partner, sufficient resources.

Ever since the results have been out, I have had the chance of meeting the who’s who of the civil services fraternity and indeed it is an enriching experience. So, remind yourself of what awaits you at the end of this hard-work. Remind yourself of the destination, the journey will soon be forgotten.

How to deal with negativity/pessimism?

As Buddha would say, our worst enemy is our unguided thought. By the same token, the more you would engage in non-studious activities, the more your mind would ponder on the result and the consequences of not achieving it. Everytime a thought tries to knock you, stop it! Distract your mind. Turn up some good dance music, go out for a walk, cook food or may be order good food. Just do something apart from thinking.

Also, never ever during the course of your journey should you think about results. Never. It only builds pressure. Also, be very stealth about your preparation. Not everyone around should know you are writing the magnum opus exam. Being a civil services aspirant is no achievement, being a civil servant is.

This is one in the series of blogs on motivation. Keep reading, work hard and stay positive.

5 thoughts on “Motivation for IAS – How to keep going?

  1. Thank you Ila for such a wonderful statement, “If you want to achieve something that you have never had, do something that you have never done”.
    Though I am not a civil aspirant but it’s literally helping in getting my project done (I am a full time researcher!).
    Keep writing such stuffs.
    Good luck.


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