Trying to become an expert in the financial industry is one of my personal and professional goals. However, I know that this is a monumental task and will take years. I am looking for ways to reduce that learning curve and become more knowledgeable in less time.
One specific strategy for increasing knowledge is to obtain a designation. To get the official letters behind my name on my business card takes studying and proving my knowledge through exams. I am currently working toward the CFP designation, a certified financial planner. The course of study I am currently in is an accelerated 1 year intense study to prepare me for my attempt at the CFP final exam in March of 2018.
I am currently in the beginning stages of the program which consists of learning cover to cover 7 textbooks followed by 7 exams and culminates with the final exam covering all of the books. I didn’t know what to expect when I started. However, I am now almost finished with the first book and my first exam in is one week exactly. It is admittedly harder than I was expecting, but I scheduled all of my studying into a monthly and yearly calendar. This strategy served to break down this beast into manageable pieces. It also gave me a schedule to follow. I am right on target as of today. There is so much reading, highlighting, and note taking I hope it isn’t going in one ear and out the other.
I am feeling a little stressed about passing the first exam. I think some of the stress is fear of the unknown. I don’t know how hard the exam will be. I don’t know if I allocated enough time to learning. I just don’t know what is going to happen. However, I know a trick to overcoming the fear. Action and knowledge. The more I know about the situation, and acting on that knowledge reduces stress levels. This tactic works in all areas of our lives. If you are scared, worried, or stressed, work to learn more info about the situation causing those feelings. You will be surprised how much better you will feel once you know more. Then take an action based on that info and the negative feelings might just melt away completely.
Time to go back to the studying. Please wish me luck, and I will update you all soon with the results.