Hi Sarthak! How are you feeling today?
Life has somewhat changed, right? During exam preparation, I had to study right after waking up. Now, I wake up late.
What was your daily routine like? I had to wake up around 6 to 7 AM. After that, I started studying after getting ready. Till lunch, I kept studying. I used to sleep after lunch. Then I rested for two to three hours. Then a snack break, and I used to start studying again until dinner, about 9 to 10 PM. Why did you choose IIT?
In 10th, I had prepared for an exam called NTSE and fortunately or unfortunately, I got rank one. If you get rank one, it gets in your mind to prepare for even tougher exams that have more practical importance in your life.
When did you start preparing for JEE?
Theoretically, it was from class 9th but practically speaking, when I knew that I was preparing for IIT JEE, it was after mid of class 11th. You can say, after the summer break that takes place in class 11th. What was your biggest motivation for getting a rank in JEE? JEE is a very big exam if you see it from the outset. Since I’ve cracked it, so I don’t feel that way anymore but if I think what I thought about it three years back, so I’d say that it’s a big exam and very tough to crack. If you set a huge motivation, then at one point in time, you might think it’s not possible to crack it, then you’ll leave it. But if you keep day-to-day motives, and think that you need to complete specific tasks in a specific time, so in this way, you’ll create a pattern that once you reach the exam day, you’ll feel confident enough to crack the exam. What was your favourite subject? Maths was my favourite, it was my favourite because I didn’t have to study for it. Whatever was taught in the class, if I’d read that much, it was sufficient for me for the exam. I never did any extra reading for Maths.
Tell me how myPAT helped you during your preparation? I did regular tests on myPAT at the time between Main & Advanced. Also, between the first and the second Main, because they had released Pre-JEE Main and Pre-JEE Advanced test series. The questions are almost the same level as the actual paper. So, you can judge yourself that how much your preparation is lacking or on which chapters you need to focus. myPAT has different tests for different concepts. You can do that and if you any doubt on any topic, you can also practice that. Once the whole syllabus is completed, so they have pre-loaded tests for practice. The previous year papers are also given by them. I did the test for 2018 on myPAT. Just before the exam, they release a series of ten to twelve tests named by Pre-JEE Main & Advanced. They are also almost the same level as JEE Advanced or slightly bit higher. They are very helpful. It is online and the actual exams have also gone online, so it is very beneficial. How did FIITJEE help you during the JEE preparation? Can you elaborate on that a little bit? If I had not joined FIITJEE, then I would not have seen the goal of clearing IIT, because I was not such a kind of guy who dreamt of going to IIT. Tell me about your experience at FIITJEE and how was the faculty, how were the peers?
The peers were too good. The teachers were very good, they were very supportive. At school, such kind of environment is not available. At FIITJEE, we meet like-minded people who want to clear the exam. They give you the motivation that you can also do it.
Was there a healthy competition?
Yes. Sarthak and I are going to indulge in a rapid-fire round. Sarthak, are you ready?
First question: Choose one – hard work or intelligence?
How many hours does one have to study every day? You just need to be satisfied. Don’t count. What is satisfaction?
At the end of the day, you should feel that you have done your best.
What to do with your phone – switch it off or throw it away?
Throw it away. Throw it away?
Yes. You don’t need a phone in your life? Yes, it’s required but you can put it away. It should be switched on though. Choose one – night owl or early bird? Early bird.
While preparing for JEE, should one be in a relationship or not? Depends on the person. Organic Chemistry or Physical Chemistry? Organic Chemistry. One piece of advice that you want to give to every student who is preparing for JEE right now? Previous year papers.
One thing that students should not do while preparing for JEE? Feel dejected. Feel dejected?
Yes. Alright, that was the rapid-fire round. Thank you, Sarthak! Clap for yourself. You performed brilliantly. You know how Social Media is a big thing nowadays amongst youngsters. People your age are on Instagram, YouTube, surfing Netflix, etc. So, how do you think one can curb this addiction as it leads to a wastage of time of the students? How did you do it? I didn’t make any account on Social Media. Oh okay, you didn’t make any account. In order to stay in contact with the best friends, I just used WhatsApp. Social Media also has some advantages of its own. You get to know about other people about how they are preparing. I could have only known about my school or FIITJEE batch but if I wish to know how people in the whole of India are preparing, then I also need to access some online portals.
Tell me what is your secret of learning formulas and how to retain them for a longer period?
I did not memorise formulas as such because as I mentioned earlier, I never memorised formulas till 10th class. The bombardment in 11th and 12th classes is of a different level. I also faced a few issues but it’s better to practice the questions more wherein the formula is used. You’d understand it easily.
What books did you get on the table for yourself?
You can buy any book which is made for the aspirants of JEE Advanced. For Maths, I had Cengage but for the fact that it’s too lengthy, you don’t have to do it fully. You need to assess how much you need to study from it. Just proceed step-by-step but it’s not necessary to do all the questions. Cengage is also good for Physics. But HC Verma is really relevant for Physics. For Chemistry, FIITJEE study material was enough for me because no matter how much you study for Chemistry, it never seems enough. Books don’t matter that much, the concept clarity is what matters the most.
Which college have you opted for and why? I’ve opted for IIT Delhi because I’m in Delhi and it would be easy for me to commute back to my home. I wasn’t getting IIT Bombay with rank 72. It is just up to rank 59. Did you have any mentor during this while you were preparing? What do you think is the importance of a mentor? A person who is on a straight path to IIT is his own mentor but speaking about myself, this wasn’t my case because I felt dejected almost for the whole of class 11th. It was not until class 12th that I was able to get up and I would thank my mentors – they were my teachers at FIITJEE and my parents.
What were you doing on days when you weren’t studying, what were you doing then? I would watch some TV series or a movie on the TV or go out to play.
What do you play? Badminton.
Do you think it’s important to have an outlet like badminton? Does it help in your studies?
Yes, it helps in relieving the stress that you get during the studies and it also makes you feel healthy and fit. How did you take care of yourself while you were preparing for JEE? Because you obviously studied the whole day but keeping check of your diet is also important. How did you manage all that? Whenever I sat for studying, the first question which used to strike my mind whether am I fit enough or not? I always kept a check on my food and outside food was also restricted. In the last two or three weeks, I didn’t even touch food from outside. I also exercised daily. Just regular exercise so that all my joints stay perfect to avoid the situation of back pain or anything else on the day of the exam. It hampers the concentration. In class 8th, I had joined Yoga classes. From then on, I’ve been doing Yoga almost regularly. Meditation is great to develop concentration. What role did your family play in your success? They supported me at every point of time because in every two or three months, I was feeling dejected. So, at that point of time, if my family had not intervened, then I wouldn’t have been able to get back to my normal self and prepare for IIT. We’re here with Sarthak’s mother. I’m wondering how she’s feeling. So, how are you feeling today? I’m feeling wonderful. I can hardly describe it in words how exactly I’m feeling. Did you expect such a great rank from Sarthak? We were expecting a good result but hard work doesn’t always translate into a good result. So, we were a bit afraid and were really very nervous.
Tell me how did you support Sarthak in his hard work – whatever he’s doing all of these years?
We always stayed a bit restrained that we don’t make much noise or disturb him. So, he was very particular about silence? He was really focussed. Wanted complete silence, there was no TV. We even breathed very carefully. But there were also some days which had its ups and downs, so we had to support him a lot. He really used to be depressed on some days. So, we tried to motivate him a lot from our end and he used to pick up.
How did you do it? Everything will be fine. I always told him that hard work never goes waste. I compelled him to just focus and focus. He used to think that people are taking different exams and he’s preparing for just one exam. So, I told him to focus on one thing. You can’t multi-task and excel in everything.
It does take a lot out of you. There were no events, no socializing. We didn’t have anyone coming to our place. We never went anywhere. I missed all the functions in my family, my in-laws’ family, my social circle.
Your whole family was preparing for IIT. Yes, kind of, that’s right. How did you take care of his food and health? There was a complete ban on outside food. Sarthak had a lot of control on himself that even if we ordered something, as we had stopped going out, Sarthak never ate anything. He always had home-cooked food all that while and I tried to put in proteins. We’re pure vegetarians, so I used to provide him sprouts, peas, lentils, chickpea flour, etc. How did you manage to comfort your child during his failures?
Fortunately, there were no failures as such all this while but yes, there were some lows – marks that were below his expectations or since others excelled, so that difference became very wide. We only comforted him, we said that all children are different.
Is there any message that you’d like give the other parents who are in a similar situation as you were a couple of months back? This is going to be a very difficult time. A very long one also, but you need to give continuous motivation. You will also need to keep your child away from a few things. He was never into Social Media. He does not have a Facebook account or an Instagram or a Twitter account, he does not have those. He did have a WhatsApp group to discuss questions. He continuously used to ask teachers his doubts and how to solve such and such question. He kept enquiring his doubts. WhatsApp was used only for that. In my opinion, one shouldn’t spend too much time on Social Media. It is addictive. We know because we are victims of that addiction. Constant motivation is also required because it’s a very long time. 4 years, which means 4 x 365 days, so it’s a very long time. It’s also important to provide a congenial the environment at the house. We should not be bickering at each other, there shouldn’t be any fights, a peaceful environment needs to be maintained. A spiritual touch is also needed. We always believed in God, we were not atheists but we did a lot of worship all these days, for sure. I visited temples a lot. I feel so nice talking to you, the way you supported your kid, it’s exemplary. Thank you so much.
Thank you. During your preparation, do you think you made any mistakes which you realized only later? You thought of correcting it earlier. During class 11th, I felt as if everyone else knows everything and I don’t know a thing. For four or five months, I did not prepare that well. If I could have done that, then I would not have thought this way. At one point of time, there was no good in stepping out, so I had to study no matter if I could do it or not. I believed more in last-minute preparations. Because of that, I managed till class 10th, but you face troubles in class 11th and 12th. While reaching class 12th, I changed my strategy and started studying regularly. If I had made a habit of studying regularly from class 9th or 10th, then class 11th would have been much better. What was your strategy in class 12th? Whatever I studied in school or FIITJEE, as FIITJEE was always a step ahead of school, so whatever was taught in FIITJEE, I used to start it from the basic level. If a new chapter was started, so whatever I knew, I started it from there itself. Then whatever was taught in FIITJEE, I did that on a day-to-day basis and then did questions. The thing which helped me the most was previous year papers. I never attempted them in class 11th, but in 12th, I did them for both 11th and 12th. They helped me a lot because you understand the pattern about the type of questions that could come. It helped me understand that it’s not that difficult, because in 11th, I felt I just couldn’t do it but never thought why I couldn’t do it. Any tips that you would like to give these guys for the day of the exam?
Whatever you have studied, to retain all of that, it’s important not to be nervous because once you become nervous, it’ll dent your exam performance. How can you avoid nervousness because you tend to feel nervous, like the way, you’re feeling nervous in front of the camera? It happens to everyone, how can you curb it?
Think that it’s not there. Try to focus on other things. While doing the paper, I was not focusing on the fact that I was taking JEE Advanced because it would give you the kind of feeling that my whole life depends on the exam. I was just like that I’m in front of the screen, there’s a question and I have to solve it.
You were in a stage where you were preparing for JEE and preparing for IIT. You know exactly about the students’ state of mind because you have been through it. So, have you ever thought of something that what if someone had come to me and told me how it feels, so you would have felt so good and you would have sailed through it? Is there any such thing that you’d to like to say, imagining yourself as that person? I’ve got a huge opportunity. I would say that first thing, books don’t matter – whichever you buy, because I had also bought a lot of different books but it gave me no benefits. I concentrated on one single book, so it reaped me more benefits. Secondly, you must do all previous year papers because it’ll give you unmatched benefits that you can’t even imagine the amount of benefit it would provide you. Half of the answers to your questions are there in them. Whatever doubts I had, I cleared more number of those doubts than those with the help of previous year questions. If you attempt those, it’d be a huge bonus. Focus more on concepts rather than thinking that if I study this or that book, it’d be more beneficial for me. Don’t think that way! Concentrate on the basic concepts because in IIT, those very basic questions are twisted and asked in the questions. When you’ll check the solutions and understand how it had to be done, you’d realize it was so easy. Hey guys, thanks for watching this video. It was so wonderful to meet Sarthak, who was so nervous when I’d just met him this morning. Right?
Yes. What happened after that?
Phod diya! Usne phod diya! Just like how he did it in his preparation. He was really nervous in 11th, but 12th mein phod diya. Get rid of all your nervousness. Just do it like he did it. Do not forget to subscribe to this channel for more videos like these, and like, share, and comment. Like, share and comment. Let us know what you think. Do not forget to download the myPAT app. Did you download the app? Yes.
How was it helpful to you?
Concept tests, previous year papers and real test environment.
Exactly! All of this in one place. What are you waiting for? Do it right now. I’ll see you next week. Until then, peace and love. Bye.