Passing the CPA Exam: Life after Conquest

Angel shares his CPA Exam experience as an international candidate.

Studying for the CPA examinations is kind of addictive.

You may find yourself crawling in the first two weeks in to exam preparation, but as soon as you get your groove going you soon feel something’s lacking each time you do not open your FAR book in a rest day, or knock off a few Wiley exercises on AUD, or listen to your NINJA Audio on REG.

Hello, everyone; this is NINJA Blogger Angel signing in once again.

It’s been almost a month since I learned I passed REG, the final leg of my CPA journey. I want to share with you how more meaningful life has become after winning it back.

A week after passing REG I had gone for a short stop to Manila to celebrate my victory with my mom, siblings, friends, and employees of our small public transport business. The feeling is just so consuming when you look back and think about how you had successfully overcome a worthy adversary.

Every ounce of sacrifice that I have invested in this journey is truly gratified, with hefty dividend paid in full.

One of my immediate plans is to start writing a book on Financial and Management Accounting and, hopefully, to release it toward the middle of next year. Indeed, life’s opportunities just become too manifest after a professional’s conquest of the CPA title.

I earned my Philippine CPA license more than two decades ago, but having the U.S. CPA title soon to be tucked under my belt just takes everything to a whole new level.

From the time I first joined another71 way back in late 2010, I have seen several NINJA posts shouting at the top of their lungs how jubilant they were upon completing their own CPA journeys, yet oddly asking how they’d now spend loads of their spare time previously allotted to studying.

To be honest, my first impression was that these NINJAs were just being plain “arrogant”. Surely, they could always go back to doing what they used to be doing previously was what I thought was just pure logic. They could go back to being the loving, caring dad that they used to, or the wife or mom who consistently takes good care of her husband and kids on a full time scale.

If you’re not among the extraordinary CPA candidates who breezed past the CPA journey in just less than 6 months, chances are you will be able to relate to what I’ll be talking about.

CPA candidates on the average take about 12-24 months to complete the CPA journey. Yes, the often rocky road to success requires you to focus your whole being to studying that long to be able to reach your destination. Deviate from this even for a little and you expose yourself to receiving some heart-breaking 74s and discouraging 60s.

And so, all for the sake of conquering this monster we learn how to say no when our kids ask us to play chess or badminton with them.

For a long while I thought I had fallen in love once again, not to a woman thank goodness, but to something known in this community as “CPA”. I knew I was “in the groove” when all I thought about then was studying for my next exam; when nothing else mattered anymore but passing.

When even in deep slumber you could hear NINJA Audios reverberating like a cool sound of morning dew, you are definitely on your way to your CPA.

Then, come the day of emancipation. Freedom. Sheer radiance at the end of the tunnel. Just as any CPA candidate had always looked forward to. Yet you suddenly find yourself disconcerted, confused with mixed feelings.

So, what is life after conquest? Without sounding negative, things will never be the same again. The things that you do and had grown living during your journey will linger on. Whatever it is that you continue doing afterwards is a matter of preference.

I chose to continue listening to my REG audio because I didn’t want to lose this precious knowledge about federal taxation that I have already acquired. I still try to knock off about 20 MCQs twice a week for, honestly, how many of you REG passers still remember the intricate rules on “basis of partner’s interest”?

On the personal aspect of things I am so thankful because my CPA journey has taught me how to reflect on the real value of spending time with the true VIPs of my life: My wife and two sons. I missed a lot of quality play time with my kids for almost two years, but now can enjoy life to the fullest by redirecting all my spared energy to the very same people who supported and inspired me in each battle.

After CPA, life is truly no longer the same, because this journey do not only teach us become better accountants but, more importantly, make us become better persons.

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