After Mains, before results: What to do!

The time after you have written your Mains and are awaiting the results is a very disturbing one. Sometimes you feel like you should gear up for interview and still on other times you feel like brushing up the standard textbook in the case of you not sailing through Mains and writing the Prelims again.

The condition still worsens when we breed negativity by thinking too much about the results. We become anxious and frustrated. We are unable to focus on studies.

All this is pretty normal so be happy if you have such symptoms because it certifies your normalcy!

Having discussed the situation, let us now see what needs to be done in this duration.

  • Keep reading newspapers. Current affairs is one section that will help you immensely in interview preparation. And God forbid, if you do not sail through Mains, Current Affairs will come handy for your preparation for Prelims
  • Be busy. This is easier said than done. An idle mind is a devil’s workshop. If you keep lazing around moving from couch to bed, you will keep brooding about results. This is the worst thing to do. You will only impact your results adversely by breeding pessimism. You can also indulge in some daily chores that you have been otherwise escaping due to a busy schedule. Buying groceries would make your mother equally happy.
  • Workout. Yes, you read it right. Most of us during UPSC Preparation tend to become a couch potato. And rightly so. The rigour of the exam is such that you are forced to be glued to your study table and chair. This obviously takes a toll on your fitness level. So use this relatively relaxed phase to shed those extra pounds. This will help you in your interview as you will look more presentable in suits/sarees minus the bulging tummy!
  • Build your CV. You can choose to work for a start-up or an NGO as an intern or full time that interests you. Not only will this boost your confidence but also give pointers for your interview. In interview a very favourite Question of the board is, “what are you doing now?”. If you mention being engaged to some organisation, it can leave a lasting impression. You can then predict your interview and hence score great marks!
  • Avoid social media overdose. Most of us stay away from our social networks until Mains. But once we write that last word of our Paper II optional, our virtual self becomes prominent to the level of almost spamming! Forums become alive with speculation about cut offs, result date, etc. All this is good but only in moderation. Too much of it will always keep you on the edge and lead to anxiety.
  • Build up on your hobby. When filling the DAF, hobby forms an important component. And assuming that you filled a genuine hobby, it would be fun to develop on your existing interest. This will help you unwind and also come handy in the interview stage. Just an hour a day can help.

The time after Mains and before results is a golden one. One may think it to be a carefree one but it can prove to be quite determining to your selection. Be positive in this phase, take a vacation, unwind but in a limited quantity. Too much of “instagramming” will distract you. And believe me being rejected at interview stage is the last thing an aspirant wants.

All the best for results!

This is a guest post by Ms Ila Tripathi (Rank 51, 2016).

You can follow her blog at

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