Fail to Plan–Plan to Fail
You’ve just signed up to your next set of ACCA exams probably a fair few months away, before you know it your sitting in LSBF’s revision class regretting the time you spent on Netflix – sound familiar? we’ve all been there.
Time is a precious commodity especially if you’re working & studying at the same time, now throw in family and social commitments to that mix and it won’t be long before you start to feel claustrophobic.
This is where planning becomes paramount for your success, Here’s some things to consider while creating a plan:
1. Factors that will affect my plan
A plan is meaningless is there’s no end goal, the fact that your reading this would suggest that your end goal is to compete your ACCA studies, however have you thought about the factors that will influence how soon you qualify? before we even get to the nitty gritty of planning you need to answer the following:
a. Where am I in my ACCA journey?
Applied Knowledge, Applied Skills or Strategic professional? Naturally as you progress through your studies you’ll have to factor in more time for self-study.
b. How many exams would you like to sit this year?
Everyone learns at their own pace, so what that in mind plan how many exams you can comfortably sit over the course of 2 years
c. Do you have any financial/time constraints?
Are you self-funding your studies? Or do you have a young family or other commitments that will influence how much time you can commit?
2. Planning for your goals
Now that we’ve established our starting point we can start to create a plan, most of us are aware that we should have some sort of plan in place for the next sitting but few of us look beyond one or two sittings, Ideally try to have a plan for the next four sittings.
Whether it’s a printable planner, a diary, a timetable or a calendar on your phone, find an organizing tool that works well for you and work backwards from exam day.
When planning make sure to consider/do the following:
- On your planner, block out your commitments such as work, classes & exams. In addition, block out any family & social commitments that you’re attending.
- Now start to block out time for self-study. Think about when you are most alert, plan your study periods around these times. I used to split my day pre & post work.
- Be sure to factor in sometime to unwind and relax. Factor in time to socialise and exercise but not at the expense of sleep. Studies have shown that physical activity can improve mental alertness and cognitive function.
- Be flexible but realistic, understand that you’ll face obstacles that you hadn’t factored in such as illness, work commitments or mental fatigue. Don’t be afraid to rejig your plan.
- Have a plan B, should you find out you haven’t passed previous exams or things are not going to plan. Even the alphabet has 25 letters after the letter “A” so don’t be afraid to make adjustments.
This article was written by Zahid Ahmed