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Today's toppers , were yesterday's aspirants. They don't do different things. They just do the right things differently.Toppers Corner is your gateway to unravel the SUCCESS MANTRAS of the toppers.Explore their stories, strategies, analyse their copies, see how they got top scores, their profile and more!!

Practice , Practice and Practice with No 'Zero Days' by Sachin Goel, AIR-209, UPSC CSE-2023

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Dr. Sachin G, a dedicated physician turned bureaucrat, secured All India Rank 209 in the UPSC Civil Services Exam 2023 after five determined attempts. His story, marked by persistence and a deep desire to expand his impact beyond clinical medicine, offers a compelling blueprint for UPSC aspirants.

Dr. Sachin's journey began during his MBBS, where his exposure to urban slums and rural areas through health camps highlighted the limitations of medical interventions without systemic support in sanitation, education, and health awareness. This realization sparked his ambition to pursue civil services, seeing it as a platform to effect broader societal changes.

Dr. Sachin candidly shares the struggles of his initial attempts at the UPSC prelims, where he faced repeated setbacks, missing the cutoff by narrow margins. These experiences underscored the critical importance of addressing negative marking and refining exam strategies. His resolve was fueled by a personal commitment to meet his own standards of performance rather than being swayed by external validation.

The turning point in Dr. Sachin's UPSC journey came after his third attempt. He incorporated a no-zero-day policy, ensuring consistent daily engagement with his studies, whether for an extensive period or as little as thirty minutes. This approach helped maintain momentum and build a robust foundation of knowledge.

Recognizing the pivotal role of prelims, Dr. Sachin dedicated himself to solving around 100 practice questions daily for several months leading up to his fourth attempt. This rigorous regimen was instrumental in improving his accuracy and speed, ultimately enabling him to navigate the prelims successfully.

With prelims conquered, Dr. Sachin turned his focus to the mains, where he leveraged his medical training to manage the extensive writing required during the exams. He prioritized enhancing the content of his answers, recognizing that while he could complete the paper on time, enriching his answers with relevant data and insights was crucial for scoring well.

Dr. Sachin describes the interview stage as the most enriching part of the UPSC process, emphasizing it as a period of self-reflection and personal growth. Preparation for the interview extended beyond current affairs, involving a thorough introspection of his views and the implications of contemporary issues on his professional and personal life.

Dr. Sachin advises future aspirants to focus on consistent revision and practice, suggesting that mastery of material and familiarity with the exam format through repeated mock tests are essential for success. He stresses the importance of understanding one's own learning and performance gaps, whether in speed, content, or exam strategy, and tailoring one's preparation accordingly.

Dr. Sachin G’s journey through multiple attempts at the UPSC examination highlights a path marked by resilience, strategic learning, and the importance of self-reflection. His insights into the preparation process, especially the transformation from a medical professional to a civil servant, offer valuable lessons on dedication, adaptability, and the relentless pursuit of one’s goals.

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