Endurance pays off - and I experienced this...Let me tell you how!
The seed of GMAT was sown in my head way back in Mar 2011, when I joined a course in Manhattan Review
, and studied very hard for my exam in July 2011. I was clueless about my score of 530, since I scored up to 670 on GMAT Prep and Manhattan GMAT
tests (previous post:where-did-i-go-wrong-118270.html#p956424). I was dejected and din't touch my books though I made a make-up plan.
I am basically a 28 year old doctor with a Masters in Clinical Research. I had been a very good student at school and was a gold medalist during under graduation. Also, I am successful professionally. The only war I couldn't win was GMAT - and this was unacceptable for me. Here started the actual story!
I received an email in my inbox saying that the GMAT pattern was going to change in a couple of weeks. Shocking!!
- since I am in the last month of pregnancy! I am unable to walk, sleep or for that matter sit for a while. As it is, I cannot give the exam in the next few months. I was more than just confused. Will I be able to sit for 4 long hours for a test I din't prepare? Yes! - said my parents and husband. They believed in my capabilities more than I did. I booked my slot on May 27 2012.
The irony is that I am not allowed to take any stress during preparation. I din't want to repeat my past mistake of not finishing OG 12
. I buckled up and finished the RC section of OG 12
. I cannot tell you how much confidence I gained in doing so. I never attempted RC on OG 12
- of course it feels so boring! But believe me, OG 12
is the best book for RC. One need not read volumes of other texts, just read all the explanations on OG. Your RC "will" improve drastically. Ensure that you solve RC early in the morning or whenever your mind is open and fresh.
With all the pumped up confidence, I started solving SC & CR on OG 12
. And the same result! Lots of confidence gain. I cursed myself for not completing OG the last time. As with math, I never crossed 45 with or without preparation. So I started giving the tests once again. I scored an average of 640 on MGMAT tests, and went up to 680 on GMAT Prep. But a huge improvement in the verbal scores made me elated.
3 more days to go, and I came across a peculiar post where a person scored a 720 on his 5th attempt. I found his strategies very surprising - Not looking at the clock during exam, reading only the underlined part on SC etc. I am eccentric and my ego tickled me on applying them! I knew it wasn't the right time to apply new strategies, but I did so for fun. I was astonished at the new discovery - I did bad on my previous exam due to huge stress! Now, when I experienced ZERO stress on practice exam, I jumped on to that strategy like a hungry tigress! I did two practice tests that way and kept quiet the last day.
As usually, I dint sleep properly the day before, but a strong instinct of success was flowing through my blood. I knew I would nail the GMAT this time with the new strategy on hand. I felt sleepy during AWA and went on for a break. I was calming my baby down saying "MOM is gonna do something unusual and please keep up with her". And she listened to me
I hid the clock, and went on solving. I had a bad algebra question as the first one, took more than 6 minutes probably, but I was not at all intimidated. I was mentally prepared for algebra n probability (tough areas for me) and all 4 RC passages at the beginning of the exam. I knew nothing else could be worse! But there was!
I developed a severe muscle cramp during the exam (common to pregnancy) and had to go out and walk for a while. It was so painful that I took time to adjust to the test once I came back.
I was left with 10 questions with 5 minutes on clock. I randomly guessed questions alternately and finally finished the section. I knew I maintained accuracy in the beginning where my score would have been set to a standard level. Made up my mind for verbal - my strong area with all the OG preparation.
Every next question was tougher and I felt I was doing well. But the same situation - I used up good time for initial questions and was left with 5 minutes for last 10 questions. I randomly guessed and went on to report the scores. Phew!! It was a 670. I couldn't believe the screen. 44 on quant, and 38 on verbal.
For me, 670 was a great score!! Looking at the heavy-me coming out of the test centre like a humpty-dumpty, my husband could make out I did well. I could not stop crying as I thanked the cute little one in my tummy. After all, I was enduring all this pain for her!
Tons of thanks to my husband, my mom, dad, sis, mahtab and lath2011 (members of this club) for all the support. And thank you all for reading my emotions. GMAT is a simple mind game and anyone can win the war even in the toughest of times!!!