So what is the number one thing that gets in the way of GMAT performance and GMAT preparation for that matter? It’s not quantitative, it’s not verbal, it’s no problem type or rule or anything like that, in fact, it’s a good night’s sleep or more particularly, it’s consistently having a good night’s sleep.
Sleep hygiene and allowing the brain to absorb the information it’s learned in the day past, as well as prepare to absorb new information in the coming day is absolutely essential to learning any new process or skill and yet, most professionals preparing for the GMAT are already running at a continuous sleep deficit. The best, the best, the best thing that you can do for yourself is to get a full eight hours of sleep every night.
And if you say well I don’t have time between my work and my social life and the GMAT, consider this, people who get a full night’s sleep are significantly healthier and happier than those who do not. So if you don’t have enough hours in the day, re-prioritize your time and that might mean taking yourself out of the GMAT for a little while, but actually it should make you more cognizant of all the things you’re not doing with your time and allow you to refocus towards the future and why you’re preparing for the GMAT.
Way too often it’s too easy to rob Peter in order to pay Paul, that is borrow now to pay later and when we do this with our time we put ourselves in this downward spiral, this downward cycle where we’re focused more on the job at hand than where we’re looking to go. We see this a lot with our clients who are preparing for the GMAT.
Being committed professionally is vital to success, it’s vital to growth and learning, at the same time if you’re so committed that you’re putting in 12 or 14 hour days, every day, then maybe it’s time to revisit the resources you’re giving to your employer rather to yourself. Ultimately the amount of time you invest in the GMAT and in yourself, including in your sleep is entirely up to you, but realize that the best outcomes come from prioritizing yourself, your learning and your career and leveraging them to be as productive as you possibly can at work, on the GMAT, at business school and ultimately beyond.
So turn the computer off, put on some soft music and go to bed.