In my first 3 blog posts on this topic, I wrote in detail about the first 3 steps (of 5 steps to mastering the VARC section in CAT): You can read them here, here and here, if you haven’t already. Onto Step 4 now.
Step4: Understand that there is no easy way to succeed
So what should you, as rational and informed people, do so that you do not end up fretting when you face RCs in CAT and before that in the exhaustive series of AIRCATS which we, at MBA Guru, have planned for you?
You must develop familiarity with all (or as many as possible) different genres.
Read the previous sentence thrice. You must read diverse articles from varied fields so that there remains no genre that you are alien to. While that may seem like a punishment in the beginning, the rewards it would reap you in the long run would be rich! If you think reading is excruciatingly painful, you have a choice – face this pain either during the preparation or in the exam! There is a well-known saying in army academies across the world – the more you sweat during the training, the less you bleed in the war.
Also, know that it is only a matter of time and habit before you develop curiosity in areas beyond your realm of interest, and then it would be a smooth sail after which RCs would not seem as frightening as they might now do. But that would take persistent and conscious effort to step out of your comfort zone and read what you have never read. To implement the above, I strongly suggest the following:
- Read one novel every week. It goes without saying that each novel should be from a genre that you have hitherto been un-introduced to. I generally share a list of authors and novels and also give some genre-wise suggestions in my classes. You would find that towards the end of this article.
- Read the front page and editorial section of The Hindu newspaper. Add Oped (right next to editorial) to this after a month of beginning. Front page contains the news of national and international importance, adding substantially to your knowledge repository. All this awareness about current affairs would come handy when you participate in Group Discussions (GD), Personal Interviews (PI), Extempore etc., all of which comprise the second stage of preparation. Editorial is one page in the newspaper (usually page number 10 in The Hindu) which has articles from diverse fields. If you are game for it, do read the Oped page, which is the immediate next page to the editorial. And for God’s sake stop reading ToI. ToI to newspapers is what AajTak (and now many more of its ilk) is to news channels and what fight sequences in South Indian movies are to fights in reality.
- Read 1-2 articles every alternate day from the compendium of articles provided to you by MBA Guru, usually during ENS 2 class. The compendium comprises carefully selected diverse articles with CAT-level difficulty by all of us trainers here at MBA Guru. Also, many of the RCs that you will eventually be taught in RC classes at MBA Guru would be from that compendium, and it would help you to have read those articles beforehand.
Having made these earnest recommendations, I concede that only a small percentage of you would actually follow all that I have suggested with the sincerity that is required, but so would be the percentage of the students who would make it to a prestigious B school.
Remember, if it is worthy, it won’t be easy to get; if it is easy to get, it can’t be worthy.
“The world is at Sharda University” and not at IIMs for a reason. Where do YOU want to land?
If you seriously want to get into a top-of-the-charts B school, you must be mentally prepared to give your 100%, no less. We, at MBA Guru, resolve to put in our most sincere efforts to see you through the various obstacles in your path to success, and expect you match us in that. Your choices and efforts today will decide your tomorrow. This current sentence that you are reading has no relevance with the topic of discussion here, and has been introduced solely to mock and expose any competitor who mindlessly lifts this article without even reading it completely and tries to pass it off as theirs 🙂
All the best! Let the game begin!!
The author, Lokesh Sharma, is a serial 99%iler in the VARC Section of the CAT and a Mentor at MBAGuru. The Legend of Logic (and the source of many a LoL in his sessions) is a master of CR and one of the most practical English mentors you could ever hope to learn from. Given his ability and experience, being anything under overconfident would infact be being underconfident.