AP. J. Abdul Kalam once said, “Never stop fighting until you arrive at your destined place – that is, the unique you. Have an aim in life, continuously acquire knowledge, work hard, and have the perseverance to realise the great life.” This clearly spells out the mantra to your UPSC preparation in bold letters- create an ideal timetable.
There is always more scope left for you when you put every task into a planned routine, giving you a fair idea about how you to want to cover every subject in an idealistic and practical manner. UPSC requires effective, continuous and consistent efforts for which a timetable is a necessity. Even with a good preparation one cannot cross the milestones of UPSC unless you are disciplined in its true sense. Therefore, finding out your weaknesses, your strengths, your personal interests, and giving time to all of them systematically will help you have a better frame of mind for the exam.
Time is the most important resource, especially for UPSC aspirants. Thus, they must know how to divide their day into a nice routine to help them gather knowledge, as well as unwind when they must. Seriousness is the quality that must exude from you. Your gargantuan syllabus along with a limited period to cover a vast syllabus should not feel like a mountain above your head only if you have a timetable that you must diligently follow.
Importance Of A Timetable For UPSC Aspirant
- Sense of direction that is expected of every UPSC aspirant is provided by the routine he/she follows without any complains. You will feel assurance every time you go by your timetable and meet your goals.
- It will reduce wastage of time and energy as you will be effectively using your mind and energy only to do the said tasks in your timetable rather than make decisions impromptu. Your goals are pre-decided hence you feel the urgency to do the task within the given period.
- It ensures that you cover every subject. With a good glance at your syllabus before you make a timetable, you will very well know your weaknesses as well as your strengths. You can make the timetable accordingly, giving more time to your weaknesses and a considerable amount of time to your strengths.
- Anxiety or stress is at bay when you make your timetable the right way. Since everything is already planned out in your timetable, you can work on yourself without taking that much stress.
- Your productivity is heightened when there is a target to be met. The compulsion doesn’t feel that pressurizing as you take it as a challenge and in the process, you reward yourself with every success.
- You actually get more time in hand to relax and nap when you have a timetable.
- Your progress becomes tangible and with the system of rewarding yourself by meeting set targets. You feel a sense of satisfaction that in return reduces your boredom.
- There is no scope for laziness or confusion. You get ample time to relax and take part in recreational activities as well as not compromise your sleeping pattern.
Download: NCERT Books
Mistakes Committed By Aspirants While Making A Timetable
- When an aspirant becomes rigid and impractical while making a timetable, he/she gets no time to unwind or relax their mind. This exhausts the aspirant in a way that he/she feels lazy to follow the timetable and starts blaming other things for poor preparation.
- When an aspirant does not go through the syllabus thoroughly before making the timetable, he/she goes ahead like a blindly with no idea about what his/her problem areas are, where he/she must stress upon, etc. Without once reading all the NCERT books, the aspirant must not dare to make a timetable.
- When aspirant has no idea about the milestones he/she has to meet, he/she cannot possibly cover the syllabus, leading to poor preparation for UPSC.
- When the aspirant does not keep enough time for breaks and nap, he/she will lose interest, feel anxious and end up believing that UPSC is not made for them. This is the first and foremost mistake that UPSC aspirant makes in the rush of becoming an ideal civil servant.
- When the timetable is made one month before exams, you cannot dare to make one. With exams at your doorsteps, it is really too late.
- When aspirants rely upon the coaching centre and tutors for ideal timetables, they do not understand the real essence of civil services. You are supposed to take your own decisions. This exam is not only about scoring high scores as your interview will expose you. You must learn to manage time on your own. When you are in the field, you will be making decisions, thus you will have to know your calibre and set your routine accordingly.
What Is The Ideal Timetable For UPSC?
- Wake up at 5 am and do some light exercises exercise, meditate, or yoga as it enhances your concentration via increased blood circulation. After a good session of exercise, drink some tea/green tea. It contains anti-oxidants that help you feel refreshed.
- At 6 am, take a bath. It is a great way to shake off the sleep.
- After a refreshing bath, grab the newspaper and lightly read the important headlines and editorials, as you will need this for making notes. Devote half an hour (till 7:45 am)
- At around 8 am, have your breakfast. You may continue reading the newspaper during breakfast.
- After breakfast, if you go for coaching classes you may reach your centre accordingly. If you study at home, you must start your studying from 8:30 am. You can start with everything you have studied the previous day, lightly reading through your notes. Then you can go through material that you find a bit difficult to understand. The mind is active at this hour of the day thus going over tough topics now will effectively help you. This shall go on till 11 am.
- From 11-11:30 am, take a short break. Avoid any thoughts related to studies. This is your time to just unwind.
- 11:30 am to 1:30 pm resume your studies again over subjective topics that you must cover for the day. It is easier to grasp these concepts as you have been studying earlier the tough topics.
- At around 1:30 pm have your lunch. It shouldn’t be something oily or too heavy or it can slow you down for the rest of the day.
- After lunch, around 2:30 pm, take out your reference books to go over topics that take a longer time. You will require extensive time for this session and therefore, must strictly stick to the long topics. This can go on till 5:30 pm.
- From 5:30 pm you must take a break. Have some tea and snacks to feel refreshed. Meditate for ten minutes as well. Make this break a bit longer too, add all your activities here or take a nap about till 7 pm.
- From 7 pm, you enter into the last phase of the study. Take lighter topics for this session as you may feel a bit drained by the end of the day. Study till 9 pm.
- At 9 pm, have your dinner. It shouldn’t be too oily as you need a goodnight’s sleep and wake up fresh.
- After dinner, around 9:45 pm, watch news discussions on recurring issues. Watch Rajya Sabha tv debates as well.
- By 10 pm, you shall be relaxing. Avoid any disturbance. Talk to your family and friends. Listen to soothing music and by 10:30 pm fall asleep.
Use your weekends for solving mock papers. You must also devote time on the revision of all topics you covered in a week over the weekends. You shall customize your routine according to your requirement. You shall also have a long term goal planned out on a weekly and monthly basis. Rest assured, with proper time management, diligence to timetable and effective preparation, you can achieve what you really wish for.