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Once I met an IITJEE aspirant named Shiv Mallik during one of my seminars in Jul y 2009.

He was having a very common but acute problem. He told me that he is ver y good at studies, has very clear concepts, solves question very quickly in clas s, but when it comes to quizzes, exams or tests, he is not able to deliver his b est and he hardly manages to get an average rank. I talked to this boy and found that his concepts were really crystal clear but his ranks in test series and cl ass quizzes where not reflecting this. There was something seriously wrong with this boy. He was having a bad examination temperament. Examination temperament includes two main things: (a) The thought process going inside your mind (what are you thinking just before the exam and what is going i nside your mind during the exam) and (b) your approach to solve the paper. In th is article I will focus more on part (a) and we will talk about part (b) next ti me. Mohammad Ali, the great boxer used to talk to himself before going to his boxing matches. And do you know what he talked to himself? He used to tell himself tha t "I am the greatest". Every time you go to give a paper just tell yourself that you know all the concepts. Most of the times students have a mind setup that th e questions in IITJEE are very tough and so they don t even read the whole questio n on the topic they have not read well and many times it turns out that the ques tion was just a cake walk. Just for an example, in 2006 JEE paper there was a si mple comprehension type question based on Matrices and determinants. Out of the 3 questions, one just needed matrix multiplication. Many students who had not re vise the matrices and determinant chose to leave that question without evencompl etely reading the question, thinking it to be a tough one. So the moral of the s tory is that don t presume anything about a question just by a glance. Sometimes it happens that you are not able to solve even a single question on th e first page of the question paper and you lose your confidence. And in that cas e you start making wild guesses in some questions just to increase your number o f attempts. That s not the correct strategy. Remember IITJEE is not about solving more question but it s about solving questions correctly. You need to minimize you r negative attempts (attempts that bring negative marks) in the paper. And one m ore thing, never forget that if the questions seem to be tough to you then it wi ll be tough to everyone giving the exam. So instead of trying to increase your n umber of attempts, focus on increasing your positive marks i.e. choose and attem pt questions that can fetch you positive marks. It happens sometimes that student start thinking before the paper or while givin g the paper that what if he could not clear the paper, what if he don t get good r ank etc. But remember that this type of negative thinking harms your performance . Just give the paper with a clear and uncluttered mind. Believe that whatever h appens will be for your best. Just believe that "you are the best."