The moment a person decides to prepare for IAS, whether being the result of impetuous passion, careful persuasion, or a new formed excitement to ‘try their luck’, he/she is also well aware of the fact that they are now in the race of the largest, toughest and the most demanding competition in the entire world. Yet, at that moment, nothing seems to strike a chord with much intensity. It’s only after a few days, when the real fever sets in and the symptoms of a classic IAS aspirant begin to show

Here are a few common problems and their cures:-

1. I-have-already-achieved-something Syndrome: The mention of preparing for civil service examination has an unusual reaction on people. In the awe of such lofty goal, it gets you both extremely appreciative reactions from friends and relatives, so much so that it already makes you stand on a pedestal. This makes you slightly over-confident and proud.

 Cure: It is imperative to understand that these increasing dialogues are also forming a bridge to an ocean of expectations which will soon leave you burdensome with pressure. The same relatives who are now showering you with praises will also be the ones on the lookout of the result dates much before you, yourself. So keep your focus steady and be your own critic and your own teacher. Do not spoil yourself with others’ comments. Be your own constant source of encouragement and motivation from the beginning to the end.


2. Chasing the wrong side of the same dream: Keep your eyes on the prize? We agree. But when the list of the rewards only contain red-beaconed white ambassadors, king-sized houses with gardens, and being treated like royalty, then these dreams are only worth spending a few seconds or minutes on, and not to be “guided” with.

Cure: Concentrate on the real sense achievement of becoming a civil servant, which only includes your contributions for the country. Think of all the changes you can make with the powers you’ll gain, instead of the feeling you’ll get with being saluted by others. Think of how proud you’ll feel when you’ll get a chance to represent your own country and its rich heritage, instead of being fascinated by the shopping sprees and around-the-world tours. Instead of the materialistic pursuit, reflect on the satisfaction for the service of your nation and its people.

Want more motivation? Read this list of 5 Amazingly Badass Bureaucrats You Would Be Proud To Know

3. Live-in relationship with insomnia: “Neend ko maaro goli. Sirf padhai pe dhyaan do beta.” is a routinely dialogue, which soon becomes music to the ears of every civil service candidate. After acknowledging the incredibly large syllabus that UPSC has gladly gifted to all its aspirants, not only sleep, but even a few extra minutes spent on eating food or talking to someone on the phone appears to be a sinful waste of time; and why not? For a syllabus as vast and comprehensive as this, it would easily take an eternity to fully finish all the topics of all the given subjects.

Cure: Relax. You don’t need to become a zombie and sacrifice all of your personal time with others. Study hard but not so vigorously that it ends up affecting your health. Don’t get flustered by the amount of material that needs to be studied. Nobody can prepare all and everything. In the end, it’s all about how ‘well’ you have studied, and not ‘how much’. So manage your time correctly to each and every subject, and give your hundred percent to each topic you study, every time. Make every minute count. Don’t study for the sake of studying, to crack the exam. Instead, study to gain new knowledge with tons of curiosity and interest.

Read this quick 5 step guide to help you start your IAS Prep while in college.

4. The jack-ass of all trades and master of none: “Arrey, Mr.Sharma ka beta vahan se coaching leta hai, toh tum kahin aur se kaise?” “In books pe time waste kyun kar rahe ho? Maine jo books boli pehle woh padhke dekho.”- This is where the most confident ones also start sweating under the rays of uncertainty and soon get drowned in the sea of doubts. “Am I doing it the right way? Am I doing it from the right place?” An even worse problem is when even the smartest ones are unable to separate genuine wisdom from verbal toilet paper. Thus, leading to a state of profound perplexity, which if not treated on time can also result in a chronic state.

Cure: Early diagnosis is the best cure. Don’t ignore. Be on a lookout for all the signs/symptoms of wrong medication (also known as, advice). If you’re not feeling comfortable with the prescribed books or new study techniques, change them. Don’t be hesitant or embarrassed to speak out. Not everyone is you, and that is your power. It’s you who should decide what’s best for you and your capabilities. Stick to what you know and what you feel good studying with. It’s your journey, not theirs. Not every advice, freely available to you is right. So take your time to analyze what you can really do before believing all the advice given to you.

5. The fear of missing out (FOMO) Preparing for civil services not only brings about a change in one’s attitude, but also a gradual change in one’s lifestyle. Now this may not seem like a problem at first. But when you see your friends catching up on the latest blockbuster movie or attending a great party, while you’re at home reading about Prithviraj-Jaichand’s legacies or find yourself with bundles of topics in NCERT books yet to be covered, you are bound to feel a little envious. You start to feel cut-off from your friends or the world outside, and feel stuck in your web of responsibilities. Very soon, you start feeling exhausted and become greedy for a change. While some remain unaffected, for others, it becomes a huge problem.

Cure: With some being masters in the art of self control, others find it a little difficult to decline exciting invitations for outings, or don’t mind whiling away a little more time in just ‘chilling’ with others or alone. They feel that they can make up for all the lost time, but then that time never really comes. It is very easy for someone to resolve that they will do it, but very few have the ability to stick to it. It all depends on one’s mental strength to understand what is right and wrong at the deciding point of time and stick to their commitment. Without mental strength, your mind will start making excuses and you will end up putting off all the work that you must do. You need to distance yourself from everyone and everything that you feel are the main cause of your distraction. Realize the true importance of your goals- what made you decide to do this in the first place, and is wasting time on anything else worthy of it? Would you prefer a moment of satisfaction or a lifetime of happiness? This is what it all finally comes down to.

Start slow and Build upon your basics. If you are in college, we would suggest you build your basics on newspaper reading first. It is important to build a good rapport with current affairs and the Civilsdaily android app is a good way to keep up with UPSC related News.

Shagun Marwah

[email protected]

Picture Credits: www.civilsdaily.com

In October 1949, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, in his speech to the members of the Constituent Assembly, said “You will not have a united India if you do not have a good All-India Service which has an independence to speak out its mind.” Ever since then, civil services have known to play a crucial role in all the administrative systems of the state, with its persistent influence affecting all the citizens, in some way or another. Today, as a result, millions of ambitious students aspire to make their voices heard, and are determined to create a difference in the society by contributing towards the betterment of the Indian governance system in whichever way they can, and as much as possible.

Although mostly considered as a ‘dream career’, the road to success to this safe haven is anything but a dream ride. It does not only require a significant show of talent, intelligence and ambition to get it, but also an enormous amount of passion, dedication and perseverance to make it (Or break it!) for a career which is just as challenging and attractive in the beginning, as it is rewarding and satisfying in the end.

The aspirants of Indian civil services thus, favor the top three services such as IAS, IPS and IFS for which UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) conducts an exam for recruitment. These services are much sought after due to their recognition of being bestowed with great power to bring about societal development, and encompassed by all means one can ever aspire for such as prestige, status, honor, salary amount, job security, foreign tours, etc.

Before we take you through the Top Services, read about these 5 Amazingly Badass Bureaucrats You Would Be Proud To Know.

However, every now and then, speculations abound and one reels under confusion. Thus, in an attempt to remove this uncertainty of whether or not to choose civil service as a career, following is a brief comparison between the 3 main kinds of services and why each of them should ever be considered by different kinds of people.

IAS (Indian Administrative Service):-


Being an IAS officer, one is entrusted with the responsibility of administering laws of the land, development schemes and each and every affair of the district. They are the policy makers and executors of all final decisions of the state. This service also provides them with an opportunity to work in a tremendous variety of fields such as social sector, security, law and order, agriculture, finance, etc. Thus, this service is best suited for aspirants who like working in different spheres and love interacting with all kinds of people, as compared to those who are limited in their area of work and get satisfied by excelling in one particular field only.

However, the job’s routine is pretty unpredictable. Along with long durations of travel postings, one also always needs to be on his/her toes in the times of any unforeseen circumstances. Therefore, intellectually sharp people with a tough and reflexive attitude would make for some great IAS officers.

IPS (Indian Police Service):-


Being an IPS officer, one is entrusted with the authority to look after some of the most essential issues of the state such as public safety and security, law and order, traffic control, crime detection and prevention, etc. IPS officers can also go on to work with many central police organizations or head intelligence agencies such as CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation) or CID (Crime Investigation Department) to solve crime investigations, provide security for VIPs or tackle counter-terrorism.

In the wake of increasing terrorist threats, criminal attacks and trafficking, a job of an IPS officer may seem like the most dangerous one of all. However, after solving an unpredictable case or serving justice to the wrong doers, the satisfaction brought to their soul is unmatched to any other feeling in the world, and worth all the efforts and dangers put in to complete their job. Therefore, those who are incredibly goal oriented, intellectually stimulating, can think ‘outside the box’ and possess a burning desire to serve the people of the society in the best possible way, will be the ones considered for this type of career.

IFS (Indian Foreign Service):-


As an IFS officer, one deals with all the external affairs of the country that involve framing and implementation of foreign policies, and issues related to diplomacy, trade and inter-cultural relations. An IFS officer spends most of his/her time abroad (almost two-third of his/her entire career) and only one third of career in India to serve at the headquarters of the Ministry of External Affairs. IFS officers get to chose three places of their choice out of the number of vacant posts circulated, and are also allowed to take their parents abroad with them.

By being given a full opportunity to travel the world, embrace new cultures and enjoy life to the fullest, the job of an IFS officer may actually turn out to be tons more exciting and life-changing than it sounds. However, it is both equally strenuous and time constraining as well, therefore highlighting the qualities of being extremely punctual and responsible with all the work, and giving more than hundred percent in every task. Therefore, this proves to be the most difficult and performance-oriented career out of all the three services, and if one feels confident and strong willed enough to handle it, then they should definitely go for it.

Nevertheless, one also needs to be extremely fluent in English-both spoken and written, for IFS officers are always required to handle lots of delegations from various countries, and therefore constantly involve having easily understandable communications between people of different embassies of the world.

Therefore, this was our selective take on the top 3 services (IAS, IPS, IFS) of civil services. We hope that we could do some justice with the content and your expectation setting. For more information on how to start preparing for Civil Services while juggling college, then, we suggest you to start with the Civilsdaily’s Android App to get a daily dose of IAS-Exam specific newsfeeds to build on your current affairs, and any further help in the future. Good luck!

Image Credits: www.civilsdaily.com

Shagun Marwah

[email protected]