IAS Officer Who Cleared IIT, IIM Shares Tips to Overcome Distractions for UPSC CSE

IAS Divya MIttal

In a viral Twitter thread, IAS Officer Divya Mittal shares how to overcome distractions and gain focus when studying for UPSE CSE.

Every Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) Civil Service Exam (CSE) aspirant would know how important it is to stay focused on their studies without getting distracted. But this is easier said than done.

However, Divya Mittal is an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer who persevered despite the odds. 

She secured an All Indian Rank (AIR) of 68 in the 2012 UPSC CSE and currently serves as the District Magistrate of Mirzapur. Being an IIM Bengaluru and IIT Delhi alumnus, she has proven her mettle in cracking some of the toughest examinations in the country. 

Recently, in a Twitter thread, she shared a few tips and tricks based on her experiences of cracking entrance examinations such as UPSC, IIT, IIM, and others.

In her tweet, she agrees that it wasn’t easy for her not to lose focus during her preparation but she overcame all of it by adopting a few strategies of her own.

Here’s what she says in her thread, which has since gone viral garnering over 29,000 likes and around 6,000 retweets.

  1. Reducing mobile usage by measuring time: She points out mobile usage as one of the main sources of distractions, adding that most of the time people don’t count the huge amount of time wasted using various mobile apps. Therefore to reduce mobile usage, she suggests keeping a tab on phone usage and the time spent on apps every week.
  1. Reduce mobile usage by keeping a physical distance: Another option is to either switch off the internet or keep the phone away. She says, “Heavens will not fall while you are studying and if it is something urgent, you will get the message.”
  1. A technological solution to reduce mobile usage: Divya suggests the usage of certain apps like Blackout to block the internet at least for six hours a day. “Force yourself to study in that time. It is not a free app, but it is very effective,” she adds.
  1. Early morning study: As a tip to wake up early in the morning, Divya suggests keeping the alarm at full volume but away from the bed to avoid switching off the alarm and going back to sleep. “Early morning study is the best these days, especially as it has fewer distractions,” she points out.
  1. Tips to increase focus:
  • Divya suggests short focussed sessions of study to maintain focus. After a 90-minute or two-hour-long study session, she advises taking a 15-minute break. She also notes, “You cannot maintain focus for longer than that at one go. Measure the session. Till the alarm goes off, don’t do anything else but study.”
  • The IAS officer advises practising ‘Tratak meditation’ by fixing eyes on one object like a flame of a candle, a pencil or even a spot on the wall, which can help increase focus.
  • Listening to sound vibrations of 40 Hz or binaural beats can help in enhancing focus and decreasing the amount of time taken to get into a focused state. She adds that these are available on YouTube.
  • Exercising or spending time outside also helps in increasing focus. Divya says that going out for at least a 20 min walk, getting close to nature by visiting a park or spending some time there would help. Besides, she points out the importance of getting some sunlight for 5-10 mins every day.
  • When it comes to increasing focus, nutrition also plays an essential role. Therefore, it is important to have a healthy and balanced diet. Divya also emphasizes reducing munching on snacks while taking care of one’s diet.

Edited by Yoshita Rao

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