How Does Your Perception of the GMAT Affect Your Score?

Your mind can be your biggest ally or your greatest enemy.

Henry Ford famously said, “Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.”

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Is your mind playing with you, or against you? Try the exercise that follows to find out.

Imagine being now, right now, on the day of the test. You are staring at the screen and notice that the countdown has begun: the way you will respond to questions for the next few hours will determine your true GMAT score.

Close your eyes, really do, imagine the situation and pay close attention to how you see things and what you feel. Then wonder with your thoughts on what will come next, your life after the GMAT, one year from now, three years from now.

Done? Good.  What did you see?

If you saw yourself scoring excellent, getting into the top university of your choice, getting the job of your dreams and having a big smile on your face, then you are on the right track.

A technique to truly help you:

But if you felt stressful at the thought of the clock ticking, if you imagined yourself missing the top score you need, not getting accepted to the university of your choice, and ending up fighting other homeless people over pigeon food, then Re-Framing will help ease this struggle.

Believe it or not, the way we imagine the future can influence it.

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Imagine to be going to a party. Imagine it will be the worst party ever: it will be horrible, full of people that will not want to talk to you, and you will feel lonely and miserable. If you think this intensely enough, chances are that by the time you get there, you will be already in such a bad mood that people will not feel attracted to starting a conversation with you, and your belief will become reality.

If you instead imagine the opposite, and enter the room with a big smile knowing you will be the life of the party, well, chances are that you will be. This is called Self-Fulfilling Prophecy (Link to article). The party and the people in it have not changed, but your attitude and the outcome have.

Re-Framing is a technique that allows you to take images in your mind and look at them differently: not in a damaging way, as before, but rather in a beneficial way .

When you think of your GMAT performance, do you see negative images?

Then take these images in your mind and turn their colors off. Now that they are black and white, make them smaller.

Do you hear a voice telling you that you will fail? Turn its volume down, give it the sound of a ridiculous voice (my favorite one is Mickey Mouse’s) and laugh at it.

Now do the opposite exercise, and frame positive images for your GMAT outcome. Images where you score high and go on having a fantastic life. Make them colorful, and add a reassuring voice in the background, loud and comforting, deep, sexy if you wish, telling you that you have nothing to worry about and that you will do very well.

Do this exercise regularly, and you will help yourself overcome exam Anxiety (see article: Anxiety – a low score’s best friend) and benefit from a Positive Belief (see article: Limiting Beliefs – is your mind working with you or against you?).

Want another powerful tool against Anxiety? Don’t forget to check our other chosen technique: Square of Power.

Want to Know More? Talk to a GMAT Coach today.

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