Atul Vats, Rank 60 shares what sustained his motivation in IAS Preparation

Dreams are made of these.

ForumIAS Member @battletank who has secured Rank 60 and a position in the Indian Administrative Service, cleared the exam in the first attempt.

What kept him motivated, has been shared by him, in his own words –

After getting selected, a lot of people and especially, civil services aspirants have been asking one particular question – how was I able to maintain the crucial momentum.

There is no particular answer, but I believe this momentum is preserved by motivating oneself through many things like recollecting why you started preparing in the first place or through some incidences, or by some innate desire to serve the nation with civil service being a means.

So, I am narrating this incidence as a tribute to one of my mentors, who has been an inspiration for the past 3 years. I recently met her, and she’s even more charming and refined than before.

When I decided to prepare for civil services, the first thing that I did was to get as much information as I could, from the internet and various other sources.

While searching for optional, I stumbled upon the blog of Dr. Garima Mittal Ma’am, and after reading it, was so impressed by her writings and lucid explanations.

Fortunately, she was posted as SDM Hisar in 2013, and I was working in a private organization there, so I decided to meet her once, and if not, at least catch a glimpse.

With a colleague of mine, I went to Madam’s office. There were around 20 people, who had come to see her with their problems and I joined the queue.

As Ma’am entered the office, after a gap of few minutes, she called everyone inside as the peon was not present (fortuitously).

There I observed how she tackled their problems, especially when she solved some certificate issue of a group of elderly women.

When my turn came, I told her that I was a civil services aspirant and just came to see her. I asked for a picture of her office and prompt came the reply, “Come, I will give you a pep talk”.

Those fifteen minutes, which I spent in Madam’s office, were etched in my memory – when she explained about how to go for the exam.

The basic mantra was, “This exam is a 3 part process. Don’t take any part lightly; recognize your strengths and weaknesses. Give everything you have in your very first attempt and fight till the end”.

When I texted Ma’am after the result, she remembered the incident and instantly recognized me.

This is what I had written down in my diary after meeting her

She was so happy and at the same time so modest, that I was at loss of words. She met me on Monday, despite her schedule being very busy and it felt like a dream come true.

We say that parents are the first teachers of a child, but I believe that Garima Ma’am, you are the first parent of this new life, where I intend to devote myself to the service of the people.
The preparation phase essentially makes one centripetal or more inward-looking, more critical, but now after the exam process is done, one has to get back to normal, one has to move on from pages to people, from accumulating knowledge to collecting wisdom.

It was indeed an honour to see Ma’am again and I hope to make her proud!

Way to go Atul!

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