How to Overcome Worries Before the Board Exams – By: Melvin Arceo

Board exams of whatever course will give you the jitters when the time comes to take it. Whether you’re a regular graduate from a community college or you graduated with flying colors from a prestigious school, your mind goes to a “what if” mode. The most common question you’ll ask yourself is “What if I fail?” Well, it is not really bad to think of failure,  for it is just part of a more complicated process, of branching out your choices when “this-and-that” happens, then leading to failure. But sometimes we think more and highlight the possibility of failure than success and that is also because it is easier to consider options when you become successful than when you fail. That is the reason why some worry so much of failure. But are there ways to overcome worries before the board exams? Apparently there are. Here are some:

1. Focus on your preparations

Have you ever watch a theatrical play? A declamation or singing contest perhaps? Or any other contest for that matter? Have you noticed actors or singers confidently giving their pieces in front of hundreds or even thousands of people? What made them that confident? It’s their preparations!

Of course actors or singers are put into test when they perform. It’s like their final exam and their grades will come from their audiences. And these performers never take their rehearsals for granted for they know, that if they do not rehearse, they will fail. Practice, as they say, makes perfect. They practice and practice that eventually their piece becomes second nature to them.  It becomes automatic! So when they go up stage and it is time to perform, they will deliver with full confidence and conviction.

You will eventually take the board exams and it is not by far different from a “performance” of an actor or singer. Unleash that confidence in you by diligently practicing and preparing for the board exams. Make it a second nature that when someone ask you a question – of course related to the exams – you will be able to answer it. And if not, you will vow to search for the answer. In that way, you will make your worries disappear because you know you can do something about it. Most of the time your worries will not come from being able to answer questions in the board exams, well guess what? You have to do your part and focus on your preparations and make your worries evaporate!

2. Be ready to compare yourself to others

They say, when you look at beauty magazines, you will look like a monkey! I really laughed hard , got my tears dropping and almost rolled over the first time I heard this saying. But then again, there’s wisdom in that saying. When you look at models in magazines they really look perfect – if not photoshop perfect – and you tend to compare yourself with those models,  and with those “perfection” – the face, body and stance – you are nowhere near their beauties and makes you look like a monkey! And that makes sense. You lose  confidence and think that you will never be like them. Imitating and making them look like you and eventually realizing and facing the facts that that will never happen will make your confidence so low that anybody can stomp on it.

It is not bad to compete with others. In fact, I am encouraging you to do that. That is, if you are ready. As I have written above, preparation makes you become more confident and when you’re confident you will become ready to take on any challenge. But when you find yourself below the scores of others, that will definitely eat away your confidence. And if this goes on and on, eventually, there will be nothing left.

Compete with yourself first then with others. Conquering yourself is not an easy task, but if you do, then it will be easy to conquer other things. How do you compete with yourself? Simple. If you have a good score on one exam, make it appoint that you will be better the next time. If you’ve read plenty yesterday, then read more today. If you have achieved better things today, then tomorrow, you should bring out the best! If you have mastered yourself, you can definitely control your future. Being ready to face your fears and conquering others.

3. Be easy on yourself

It is funny how your friends, family and even your professors will compare you to others. Especially when someone took the board exams ahead of you and made it with flying colors. You will see their posters all around your school, their pictures in the internet and professors will even brag about them, telling the whole class they were their students before. Pressure builds on your chest and sometimes you’ll feel your head will explode every time you remember what your professor said about those past achievements.

Be easy on yourself and don’t walk on shadows of others. While it is important to pass the board exams,  it is more important that you do your best and give your all, not really for others but for yourself. Sometimes too much pressure will take away your confidence and it becomes more of a hindrance rather than help. Never put yourself in a situation that makes everything harder for you.

4. Don’t think of what other might say to you

You are not really afraid of failure, aren’t you? You are only afraid of what others will say when you fail. According to my favorite social psychologist Robert Cialdini, our actions and behaviors are based on what others might think or say to us. Most of the time, it is their expectations that makes us move in their way. We pressure ourselves to satisfy them and become what they think we should become. And often than not, it gives us more worries. You not only worry about your preparations, especially when you’re already having problems with your preparations, but you also worry on how to cope up with what others would say to you when you fail. Remember, when your mind is under stress, you cannot think clearly according to Daniel Goleman the author of the book Emotional Intelligence.

So why worry about what would others say to you? You have more important things to worry about and you should focus on things more helpful in your success, of becoming a licensed professional. Stray away from expectations of others and lift the “bar” of excellence by putting your own high standards. Set the standard others will follow and not a follower of standards others have set.

5. Think of opportunities rather than threats

Preparing for the board exams gives us more opportunities than threats. Opportunity of passing the board exam is of course one of them, not to mention topping it. Opportunity of gaining more knowledge, testing your strengths and limitations, and meeting more friends that will eventually expand your network, is really exciting. It definitely outweighs the threats of failing, because if you fail the exams, what you have had gained will never be taken away from you. Still you have gained knowledge, you have tested your strengths and limitations and definitely your friends will still be there.

Threats of failure in the board exams can really be nerve-racking. Threats like you’ll be rejected by companies you will apply to, you’ll never get the job you want,  you’ll forever suffer the mockery of your friends, are just the products of the imaginative mind of some. But those are half-baked truth. You can still get the job you want, especially, if the job you want doesn’t require professional license and only needs the skill you possess. You can get to a company you like, especially, if you know someone from there. And true friends will not mock you but will help to make you feel better.

So go on, take the board exams without worries. Always remember that worries are fruits of your mind. Just think of these five things and have a worry-free board exams! Good luck!!!

14 responses to “How to Overcome Worries Before the Board Exams – By: Melvin Arceo

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  2. Kathleen Aquino

    Good afternoon, Sir. Gusto ko lang pong mag-comment dito sa blogsite ninyo. Actually hindi po sa lahat ng ECE graduate applicable ang sinasabi nyo especially sa no. 5. Think of opportunities rather than threats
    Hindi sa lahat applicable na kahit hindi licensed ay makakauha pa rin ng work na related sa ECE. May mga iilang sinuswerteng makahanap agad ng work na pang-ECE kahit hindi licensed pero hindi lahat may swerte sa ganun. Ako po kasi naghahanap for more than 6 months, wala pa rin hanggang ngayon. Gusto ko po talaga sa communications kung papipiliin ako. Eh kaso po, kahit gustuhin ko man, eh karamihan sa companies gusto lisensyado? Kukunin na rin kahit Saka wala naman akong kakilala dun. Tapos dun naman sa isang semicon, may kakilala ako kaso ni hindi ka naman matulungang makapasok Baka nga po mga pang-clerical job na lang ang mapasukan ko dahil kailangan na rin naming ng panggastos for everdyday life. Napakahirap na ikaw lang ang inaasahan ng family na kumita ng pera.

    Gusto ko rin pong mag-comment dun sa no.1. Focus on your preparations step to overcome fears in the board exam. Hindi din po sa lahat ng pagkakataon ay applicable ang strenuous preparation for board exam. Actually po matagal na akong naghahanap ng tips kung paaanong makakapag-review ng gaya ng isang fulltime reviewee kahit nagta-trabaho na. Kaso wala po akong mahanap ditto sa internet. Paano po pag nagta-trabaho na? Paano po ninyo magagawa ang 8-10 hours review gaya ng isang fulltime reviewee? Hindi po ba napakahirap nun? May maibibigay po ba kayong tips kung paanong makakapag-review effectively in order to pass the ECE board exam while working? May pag-asa pa po bang pumasa kahit part-time reviewee lang?

    Gaya ko, dalawang take ako ng board, noong November 2010 and April 2011 pero hindi pinalad na pumasa. Noong November, talagang tanggap kong hindi ako lulusot dahil sobrang hirap talaga ng board that time kaya nga 21.7% lang ang passing rate. Saka during my review, may mga nagging distraction ako na di ko inaasahan kaya nasira ang sked ng self review ko. Di na po ako nakasunod sa review kaya 2 months before the board na-sense ko talagang di ako papasa dahil kulang ang prearation. Pero nung take 2 ko, talagang yun ang pagbagsak na hindi ko matanggap. Kung tutuusin, dapat nakapasa na ako dahil madali-dali po kung ikukumpara noong November. Eh kaso po, due to financial problem, napilitan akong maghanap ng work. Kaya yun, hindi ako naka-attend ng refresher and coaching. Self-review na lang. Nagbakasali na lang po ako dahil wala na rin akong chance na makapag-review ng fulltime. Hayun, bagsak. Hindi po ako nanghihinayang dahil may lumabas sa coaching (alam ko pong chambahan lang din kung magkakataong lumabas ang mga ibibigay sa coaching o hindi dahil walang assurance na 100% reliable na may lalabas sa coaching) or hindi dahil maraming nakapasa (44.97% passing rate at karamihan sa classmates kong reviewee last April, sa inyong Review Center nakapasa). Ang sobra ko pong pinanghihinayangan ay yung mismong exam – madali siya compared noong November, na kung naka-concentrate ako sa self-review at naka-attend ng refresher, mas sigurado ako sa mga sagot ko. Kasi halos mga nasa reviewer at books lang ang karamihan sa mga tanong lalo na sa math. Sobra po akong nanghihinayang dahil kung di lang dahil sa kakapusan ng pera, dapat nakapasa na ako….

    Kaya eto po, balak kong mag-take ulet ng board either this October or April 2012. Depende kung kailan ako makakahanap ng work nito. Actaully, pinatitigil na nga po ako ng parents ko dahil mahirap ang sabay na review at work dahil bumagsak ang Papa ko sa CPA board exam dahil nagta-trabaho siya habang nag-rereview. Pero, ang naiisip ko na lang po, mas lalong walang mangyayari sa career ko kung susuko na akong magtake ulet dahil hindi nga ako mkahanap ng work na gusto ko talaga ng diploma lang ang laban. Siyempre po, marami din akong kalaban mga tulad ko ECE graduate din, na mas may experience kaysa sa akin at lisensyado pa. Siyempre po, sila na kukunin, hindi po ba?

    Kaya mag-tetake po ako ulet (kahit take 10, tutal wala naman pong limit kung hanggang ilan beses kumuha dip o ba?) kesa sa maging forever frustrated for some reasong beyond my control. Pipilitin kong pagsabayin ang pag-rereview at trabaho kahit napakahirap nun. Ang hirap din po kaya ng self-review lang? Pero no choice naman ako. Kumbaga take it or leave it. Alam kong pag sumuko ako, talagang wala ng pag-asang maging Licensed Engineer. Sana nga lang, may awa ang Panginoon, ibigay na Nya sa ikatlong pagkakataon.

    Pasensiya na po Sir, kung mahaba yung comment ko. Gusto ko lang talagang fully makapag-comment thru my experiences sa pagkuha ng ECE board exam. Alam ko pong kahit sa blog lang, maraming kayong matutulungan sa mga tips na pino-post nyo dito. I hope, masagot nyo ang mga questions ko regarding sa board exam na iniligay ko sa mga unang part ng comments ko. God Bless and more power to your Review Center.

    • reviewdynamics

      Hi Kathleen, I appreciate your comment and I personally thank you for sharing your experiences to us and to our readers. As much as I want to answer your questions blow by blow, I dont have the luxury of time right now but I will make it direct and concise as much as possible.

      I must admit that what I have written about overcoming worries before the board exams is limited only to those who are full time in review. I myself, during my review for the board, had a job and doing my review part time. Maybe, I’m just lucky to pass the board while just having part time of review. But I will try my best to research for something that may help you with your situation right now.

      I must also agree that it is really difficult to pass the board exams while doing your job. So, I guess you just have to focus on one if you cannot handle both. But the next problem would be the finances that would support you and maybe your family. But that’s a problem that became a problem when you think of it that way. I suggest that you should do your job since you applied for it and you are duty bound to do what is asked of you. But if you are really up to passing the board exams, get a job that is not really demanding and maybe just enough to support you and your family and give more effort on your review.

      I also admire your perseverance and your hardwork, keep it up. Never surrender until you get your goal in place. One of the best things about preparing and taking the board exams is it transforms us to something different. It makes stronger and hardworking. It also let us discover about ourselves, what we can do and what our limitations are.

      I hope this helped you and I promise to search for deeper answers to your questions. And maybe you may want to read my other article “Are Filipinos Title Hungry” to give you some insights on your problems especially on jobs you’re in or trying to be in.

      Thank you Kathleen and I hope to hear from you soon.

  3. Kathleen Aquino

    Thank you Sir, for the advice and tips. Totoo po talagang 3 bagay ang susi para pumasa sa board exam, parang pag-aaral din..na naaalala kong sinabi ng prof ko kung noong nasa college pa ako: Aral, Dasal at Swerte (ADS)…di sapat na basta masipag at matalino at genius ka lang, kailangang may swerte din…pag nagkataong lumabas yung ni-review mo, jackpot kna…pero di din pwedeng rely ka lng sa luck..ihanda mo na sarili mong bumagsak. Di rin naman pwedeng di ka magpray dahil si God ang tagapabigay ng swerte…depende na lang kung sloid na solid talaga ang foundation mo sa apat na subjects. hindi rin naman pwedeng pray ka lang ng pray..kailangang gawin mo rin ang part mo para pumasa ka, “Nasa Diyos ang awa, nasa tao ang gawa”… In short, balance dapat yung tatlo…

    May tanong lang po ako. Ano po ba yung tinutukoy ninyong work na hindi demanding? Yun po bang hindi related sa engineering works? Kasi di po ba kalimitan sa mga ECE related fields ay up to weekends and laging my overtime? Bihira ka na pong makakita ng usual 8 hrs lng. Office work nga 9 hrs eh. Saka pagod din po ang kalaban mo. Lalo ding mahirap pong makakita ng part-time job…

    Naisip ko po kasi, kung magwwork muna ako for 3-4 months bago review ulit pag nakaipon. One at a time kumbaga. Pero ang mahirap nga lang, ako na lang po yung inaasahan. Di rin pwede tuloy tumigil. No choice kundi pagsabayin na…. Kasi naisip ko rin po, di rin pwedeng pagtagalin ng sobra, na isang taon bago ka ulit magreview. Makakalimutan mo na siya lahat. Back to start ka na. Tulad ng isang kakilala kong ECE grad na 2 years una sa akin…hinihiraman ko ng mga book sa math at elex..Nagwork na pagka-graduate dahil siya na lang din ang inaaasahan…After one yr ska sya nagtake…bagsak dahil up to Saturday pasok nya sa work. Minsan di na nakakapag-review ng Sunday..Pinapa-take nga po sya ulit ng Mama nya. Ayaw nya na kasi nakalimutan n nya daw. Kailangang pumasok na ulit sa school..Kumbaga pumasok sa college…Pinagma-masteral na lang ng company na pinapasukan nya…graduate pa siya ng isa sa mga sbhools na madalas mag-top sa board, scholar pa siya dun…Tapos nung highschool honorable mention pa siya…

    But, hopefully, makapagbigay po kayo ng effective tips kung paanong makapag-rereview ang isang part time reviewee para pumasa sa ECE board… para makatulong na rin sa ibang reviewee na tulad kong may prolem din sa ganito.

  4. sir, tnong ko din nga po pla…hanggang ilang take po b ng ECE board exam ang pwde?..nay limit po b ang pagtake ng board exam…kc po pagkakabasa ko po sa ECE laws, wlang nkalagay….unlike sa law, pag jkumuha ka ng bar exam, up to 3 times lng.and sa career service exam, up to 4 consecutive times lng pwedeng kumuha, then pg bumagsak, after 2 yrs n ulit pdeng kumuha…kc po plan ko pong kumuha sana ulit dis oct 2011…pg di pinalad pumasa ulit, try ulit ako sa april 2012…
    sana po masagot ninyo kaagad…salamat po muli…

  5. sir, pnu po yun pg halimbawa, tulad q, dalawang take q ng board ng november 2010, at april 2011…tpos, nagtake ulit ako ng april 2010 tpos bumagsak ulit…pwde p po bng magtake ulit ng october 2012?supposed to be n meron akong isang board exam na ipnagpaliban?o pahinga na din ng 1 year?o basta kailangang 3 magkakasunod lang na bagsak valid yung 1 year na pahinga?…tnx po..

  6. nice post.. those tips are actually applicable.. sometimes, kailangan mong dayain ang utak mo para ma-overcome ang takot mo sa board exam.. this is the best time to develop your self confidence despite of the fact na hindi mo talaga alam ang lalabas sa board exam.

  7. Hi Sir, in my case naman its almost 11 years since I graduated from ECE. And I am really planning to take the board exam again on April 2012. The really hard part is I have forgotten what I have learned before… AS IN! And my work currently does not practice any ECE related subjects. What best tip can you advice Sir to help me prepare for the board? Like where do I start? Like just reading a whole Comms book at first without really understanding it then read everything again this time trying to understand it. I know I will be lacking time since I work full time from M-F. But I do have weekends and that I see is a window for me to review. But how? Where do I start? I need to really refresh my memory… and the worst part is I have forgot how to use the sci calculator! Well I hope you can share some insights. God Bless!

    • I have received numerous queries similar to yours on how they will get started on review after several years of not practicing or not even touching their calculators after failing on their first try. It is also hard to start again especially if you are a little rusty on your academics. Well, sad to say, there is no shortcut to this. Getting pumped up on review once again is no picnic but to hell-and-back approach. (that’s a little exaggerated).

      Don’t be overwhelmed with the four subjects in ECE namely, MATH, ELECTRONICS, GEAS and ESAT. You need to ask yourself, what subject are you still familiar with or your favorite perhaps? By getting down with your favorite subject, little by little, and by diligently reading and answering multiple choice questions, you will feel the jive of it. Your confidence will grow stronger and you will be convinced that you can take on harder subjects. Take note, the key here is to study your favorite subject first and be diligent.

      I hope I have helped you with my short answer. And, I will try my best to get a full article on this. Good luck and God Bless!

  8. Thanks Sir! I will take on your advice!🙂 Thanks for giving time in answering my question. This is really helpful since I do not have anyone to ask certain tips I could use to prepare and my head is aching just thinking about the board. But I have decided to make this leap and try once more. Hopefully I will PASS this time!🙂 Just thinking about passing makes me really happy!🙂
    During my time there were only 3 subjects for the board exam: Electronics, Comms, and Math. hehe things have really changed!🙂
    Thanks again Sir for your insight! May God shower you with more blessings! Have a great day!

  9. いいですね!

  10. naenjoy ko po ang pagbabasa nang mga comments nio . worried din kasi ako na baka someday mahirapan din ako mapasa ang board exam plano ko po kumuha nang ECE freshman pa lang po ako sa pasukan .. pero ngaun pa lang medyo napanghihinaan na ako nang loob pero gusto ko po talaga maging lisensyadong engineer pag dating nang araw kaya pipilitin ko pong magsumikap

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