Dealing with Life’s Curveballs during the CPA Exam

Megan is a weekly Another71 Facebook blogger as she documents her journey through the CPA Exam.

Sometimes, life throws you a curveball, and you aren’t sure how to get the count back in your favor. Regardless of how much you plan, and how well you stick to the plan, there are bound to be uncontrollable variables that pop up. It is how you manage these factors that will affect your success – not just in the context of becoming a CPA, but in your career and life!

I recently suffered the loss of a dear family pet. I won’t get into the details, but I’ll tell you it was tragic and unexpected and threw my whole family for a loop. I found it very difficult to focus, both at work and on my studies at home. Some of you may not be able to relate to this sort of event, but everyone has experienced a lack of focus or motivation at some point.

For some, the best medicine can be distraction. Sometimes throwing yourself into work or school can help you deal with loss. For me, this loss had to be dealt with before I could bring my attention back to studying with Roger CPA Review. How do you deal with stressors or unexpected turns in life that could potentially keep you from accomplishing your goals?

Here are some of the best ways I’ve found to stay motivated and regain my focus:

1. Remind myself why I want to be a CPA

2. Set small goals- like finishing the next 5 questions in 5 minutes

3. Turn my cell phone to silent and put it in another room

4. Before hiding my cell, I use it to check Twitter and see what @RogerCPA has tweeted lately- He’s a great source of motivational quotes and enthusiasm

5. Take a break to go for a quick walk outside and get some fresh air

6. Read blogs written by CPA candidates for support and inspiration

7. Promise myself a treat only AFTER I finish the lesson

8. Think about another large challenge I’ve accomplished (like graduating from college) to remind myself how capable I am

9. Change locations, like studying in another room or going to the library

I know you’ll find a way to get back on the horse if you fall off. Maybe some of these ideas will help you. Good or bad, when a major event occurs, take the time you need to deal with life, and get back on track as soon as possible. If it were easy to become a CPA, every accountant would do it.

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Karen 11 years ago

I know all too well about losing a family pet while studying. I had to have my beloved Golden Retriever put down (due to cancer) on Valentine's Day of this year. I sat for the AUD exam ten days later. I had studied so hard and knew that I just needed to press on. Needless to say, I didn't pass the exam, that time. I did pass AUD later on though. Really good advice here!

AshleyCap 11 years ago

I can completely relate I lost my sweet 15 year old kitty on Halloween and it really messed up my study schedule. Took time to grieve and now I'm back in full attack! Wishing you the best.....