Since starting the MDI Prep in 2009 I have seen my share of student victories, but I have also seen some defeats. The hardest part about exam prep is consoling and rejuvenating the student that has failed their exam. Last year for some odd reason we had three students who had almost the same emotional personality. All three were bright students, but they were extremely hard on themselves. Needless to say when they failed their exam, their response was the same, “crying”.

One of the students we will call her Jane, this is not her real name, but she will be referred to as Jane going forward. She studied for 1 week to prepare for a test that normally takes 3 months to study for. Despite me advising her not to take her exam, she took it anyway. As you might realize, she didn’t pass and the next 30 minutes on the phone with her was a mixture of crying, shouting and laughing. She has so many mixed emotions that she didn’t know which was appropriate. I told Jane that “tears were not going to change her exam score”. Once she understood that point, the real solutions good begin to be implemented.

Jane is not the first person to ever fail a test and she surely won’t be the last. The difference in someone giving up and crying everyday about an exam score that won’t change and someone who sucks it up and re-positions themselves for a comeback can be summed up in a few bullet points:

How to break through the tears and find victory

1. The comeback kid doesn’t see the exam as a period in their sentence, but rather a comma to a more positive future outcome.

2. The person who is shedding tears is focusing more on the failure than the future.

3. The more you think about an item the more it becomes cemented in your psyche. I have at least two students score the same score on their MCAT exams on two separate occasions. How in the world does this happen? It is simple and best summed up this way; If you never see a blue Nissan Sentra prior to you buying one and now all of a sudden you see a Blue Nissan Sentra on every block, is how the power of fixation works.

Get ready of negative memories

One of the first things I advise students after the tears have been shed, is to burn or discard any prior test scores that remind them of failure. If the exam results can’t be discarded then each time they see, speak or hear their old results they should say aloud their new desired score 8 times. That’s a 8:1 ratio for the affirming test score, with less energy exerted on the score that caused the tears.

In my next blog I will give a 40 hour study schedule with strategies that can help over 90% of individuals pass an exam on the first attempt