There are a lot of people in the country dedicatedly preparing for the UPSC civil services exam. The UPSC syllabus is rather vast and eclectic. Also, the exam pattern is hardly predictable with the UPSC always deciding to surprise candidates with a few twists. Aspirants who prepare fulltime find it difficult to comprehensively cover the syllabus. So what to talk of aspirants who juggle a fulltime job along with their IAS preparation? They need to work a little extra, put in a few more hours, sacrifice a bit more, and most importantly, know how to prioritise their studies. If you are a working professional and are preparing to take the UPSC exam, read on for a few golden tips that will surely help you streamline your preparation and optimise it for maximum benefit.
How to prepare for IAS while working?
Golden tip #1: Establish a fixed routine
Since you would be engaged for at least 9-10 hours at work and for travel, you can only squeeze in about 3 hours on weekdays to study. You must establish a routine and be a stickler for it to successfully employ the mere three hours you get to study for the exam. Having a routine helps you develop habits. This way, you can also have weekly and monthly plans to finish the syllabus.
Golden tip #2: Internalise the UPSC syllabus
You don’t have the luxury of time. So, be careful about what you read and how much time you give to each topic. You must have a firm grip on the syllabus and read only what is precisely mentioned in it. Even while making notes for the latest current affairs, link it to the UPSC syllabus.
Golden tip #3: Prioritise your topics
It is recommended that you know what topics are hot and what not. Since you have to streamline your preparation, you must be able to weed out the irrelevant ones. This will be possible if you go through previous years IAS questions papers; you must go back at least till 2010.
Golden tip #4: Stick to a few books
The next golden tip is to restrict yourselves to a few good books for IAS preparation. What is important is understanding the topics correctly and being able to write answers well. So, read only a few recommended books and avoid getting confused.
Golden tip #5: Select your optional wisely
It is also important to select an optional subject that you are familiar with, preferably a subject that you did for your graduation or related to your present job. This way you don’t have to start from scratch.
Golden tip #6: Practice
Apart from studying, you should practice answer writing as well as take mock tests. You should somehow make time for this in your busy schedule. Successful aspirants are those who practiced questions papers and answer writing.
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