Every action has an equal and opposite reaction. Who knows this better than a medical aspirant, a student preparing for their upcoming NEET (National Eligibility cum Entrance Test) exams. In their life, in your life, all you think about day and night is about finishing up your syllabus, without paying attention to anything else. Because at this point, you are all in a mindset that if you do anything other than study, it will have a negative impact on your results, and this guilt weighs you down all the time, making sure you do not attend any upcoming family functions, do not go out with your friends, do not even ‘waste’ time watching movies, reading books and so on. But this is not healthy, and should not be the case for you at any cost.
Preparing for NEET is a tough journey, undoubtedly, but it is one you can make enjoyable, and memorable for you as well. It might sound surprising, but people have celebrated their birthdays during their exam preparation as well and topped the exams, despite. All you need is the right strategy for you. This is a new generation, and the time for modern study methods, which highlights how the key is to work smart instead of hard. You might think you need to enroll in the best coaching center to prepare in the best manner, but with the resources available these days, you can as easily crack the exam from the comfort of your own house.
Preparing For NEET at Home
Here we list some of the most crucial points for you to keep in mind while preparing for your upcoming NEET exam, some strategies that do not make you rely on anyone else but yourself. All you need is the right plan of action, and you will soon find yourself nearing your goal, that too without spending all 24 hours of your day with a textbook in hand!
Familiarize yourself with the exam pattern and syllabus
This is the primary and the most crucial step. You should know the important topics that you need to prepare for, the weightage of physics, chemistry, and biology in the paper, the time duration, section division, and so on, thoroughly. Furthermore, you should also try to find the topic-wise marks weightage, to help you strategize further. Moreover, you should also be well informed in advance about the important dates related to the exam.
Check: NEET 2023 Syllabus
Choose the right study material
This decision can make all the difference. Making an informed decision about the textbooks you want to rely on is crucial. Experts, along with toppers, recommend students to go for NCERT textbooks, at least during the initial stage of preparation. NCERT textbooks are said to be the bible for a student preparing for these competitive examinations. Once thorough with the content of those, you can go for something more advanced.
Download: NEET 2023 Study Material
Devise a plan
This is the stage in which most students face difficulty. Managing the entire syllabus of NEET exams can be a disaster without the right timetable. Your timetable should be your own, not something you stole from your friend who topped the exam last year. It should be a personal timetable, something which reflects you. You should keep in mind your own capacity, whether you work better in the morning or at night, whether you can study continuously for 3 hours or need some small breaks in between, and so on. Keep some days with longer study hours, and other days like weekends, with shorter hours you spend with textbooks. You can always take a complete break from studying on days of festivals, and other occasions, without feeling guilty, since it is essential to keep your mood uplifted and positive, instead of studying thoughtlessly for a whole month without any productive outcome. Moreover, you should also divide subjects according to your mood. For instance, it is better to not keep two boring topics to study on the same day. It is also advisable to keep the toughest subjects to study when you feel the most energetic. Suppose, if you are an early riser, you should study the topics you dread the most during the first half of your day, and keep lighter topics for the second half. It has been scientifically proven that your brain is the most active during the initial hours of your wake-up, which helps you concentrate better during the period. Moreover, you should also not make a schedule for months at a time, and instead, make a routine for smaller periods, and keep updating them with them. All this will help you keep proper track of the syllabus completed, and help you prepare systematically.
Prepare notes while studying
This is one of the most vital NEET preparation tips given by toppers and experts that help students to keep track of what they have studied. Staring at your textbooks, or repeating the words in the book with your eyes closed, definitely helps. But it can soon bore and tire you. So, it is recommended to prepare handwritten notes alongside, while you study a topic. This will also save you the hassle of going through your textbook again, during the stage of revision. Taking the effort to write something down not only increases your retention capacity but also gives your muscles some movement. While preparing these notes, use your own created abbreviations, doodles, and anything and everything that you relate with the topic, that might help you remember that during the day of the exam. And keep in mind that these notes are not being made to impress someone, so use whatever handwriting suits you (till you can figure out your own words!). You can also use sticky notes, and other pretty stationery tools available these days, if that helps. You do you!
Download: Handwritten Notes
Take guidance from online topic-related videos
If you get stuck somewhere while studying, be it at a concept, or a particular question, you can always refer to the online videos available today, on youtube and many other websites, where experts and professionals explain the particular topic or query.
Enroll for online classes, if required
Sometimes, many students regret their choice of not opting for a coaching center, etc., and preparing for the NEET exams on their own, at home. If, for some reason, that happens, you can always look up for some online classes, which specifically train you for these exams, saving you the hassle of spending time traveling to and fro from the coaching center. However, this step is completely optional and depends on the choice of a student.
Practice time blocking
Time management is the most crucial factor while preparing for any competitive exam. This can sometimes be much more difficult at home. For instance, when you open your textbook, and your mom calls you into the kitchen for something, or your dad phones you from his office. And you realize you wasted an hour when you had just planned to start studying. This can easily ruin your timetable and demotivate you further while making you feel constantly distracted. So, it is advisable that whenever you sit to study, let everyone know in the house to not disturb or distract you. Keep your door locked and phone off, if necessary. It is always more productive to concentrate and study for 3 hours, than just staring at your textbook absentmindedly while you roam around your house for 6 hours.
Avoid social media
Since the lockdown, we have all become addicted to spending hours scrolling mindlessly through the reels on Instagram, day and night. No one is asking you to give that up completely. No one can promise that you will top the exam if you uninstall all social media apps, and/or give up your phone completely. But instead of spending 2 hours of your day on Instagram, you can definitely try to limit that to half an hour. Even if you do not study for the remaining 1.5 hours, you can just try to relax your eyes during the time. All we advise is that you should tread with caution around social media, for this addiction is something many have fallen prey to during this period and regretted later.
Do regular revision
Studying a new topic every day for 20 days, and then forgetting the topic you studied on the first day, will not help you. You must constantly stay in touch with what you have already studied, be it through your notes, textbooks, random online tutorial videos, or any other form convenient to you. Revising the same topic multiple times will also help you recall it easily during the time of the exam. For instance, you can keep your timetable such that you learn new topics 5 days a week, and revise the same during the weekend.
Download: NEET Revision Notes
Attempt mock tests
Practice as many mock tests as possible. Mock tests are designed keeping in mind the syllabus and overall pattern of the actual exam. So, answering these tests gives you a glimpse into what you are actually dealing with. It is also advisable that you give at least some mock tests sitting at your table, in a room alone, with a time limit. This will help you get into the feel of the actual exam, and also help you strategize how you answer the exam, which section you begin from, how much time you allot to each question, and so on. However, during this phase of answering mock tests, you must remember to not feel too depressed if you score less, or become too complacent if you score higher than your expectations. There is always room for improvement, in both cases.
Solve previous year’s question papers
Many times, questions from previous year’s papers are repeated in the current competitive exams. So everyone recommends students be completely thorough with the questions that have previously appeared. Solving these question papers also helps you understand the way the exam is wired, in a better manner.
Live a healthy lifestyle
Lastly, do not forget to eat and sleep! As Indians, we find our neighbors and friends glorifying the fact that they have been studying day and night, without sleeping a wink, or wasting time eating. But this behavior is extremely unhealthy, and will not take you far. Giving your body adequate rest and nourishment is as essential to success, as studying is, if not more. You can think about sitting for the exam even if you feel a bit less prepared, but you will not be allowed to even enter the examination hall if you are ill. What will be the point of all the hard work if that happens? So, you should definitely concentrate on these aspects. You can also opt for some yoga, exercise, or even a walk or a few minutes of jog, to freshen up your body. Also, you need to stay healthy not only physically, but mentally as well. During the period of preparation for NEET, it is crucial to stay away from negative energy, and not pay heed to those friends who boast about themselves and belittle you. Only a healthy and positive mind will be able to crack its way through this exam!
To conclude, it is not that difficult to succeed in the NEET exams from your house itself, but if and only if you give in your 100 percent. Constant effort and dedication are the key and remember to play to your strengths on the day of the exam, and you will find yourself flying towards your dream medical college!
Lastly, we wish you all the best, and hope to see your name among the top rank holders of the upcoming NEET exam!