MCAT preparation books and live MCAT preparation courses are certainly useful, but oftentimes the MCAT is so psychologically intimidating that fears and anxieties creep in and hold you back from earning your highest MCAT score.
Overcome intimidation by using these psychological tricks as you prepare for the MCAT.
1. “I am bigger than the MCAT”
You are bigger than the MCAT. You might not feel that way as you prepare for the MCAT, but you are now and will forever be bigger than the MCAT.
Declare that you are bigger than the MCAT and your attitude will transform the MCAT into a vulnerable target that you can control and dominate.
2. The Flow State
When you become emotional — perhaps while you’re studying an especially challenging MCAT problem — your rational thought diminishes as your emotions take over.
When you are in a state of focused relaxation, a psychological “flow” state, you are fully energized and focused on the task at hand and your emotions are completely in your control.
If you feel yourself becoming emotionally overwhelmed, take a break and do something quiet and relaxing for a few minutes. You should regain control of your focus very quickly.
3. Exuberance and optimism: “Happy for no reason”
You can transform your anticipation from negative to positive by celebrating successes that haven’t yet come.
Broadly speaking, there are two ways to anticipate your future:
- Anxiety: anticipating an unhappy future outcome
- Bliss: Anticipating an extremely happy outcome
You can anticipate an extremely happy future outcome now by celebrating today. Celebrate the fact that you will take the MCAT, you will earn a high score, and you’ll have completed the most difficult test out there.
By celebrating that happy outcome now, you’ll become more motivated and focused on your MCAT preparation in the present.
Next, I recommend that you check out my Open Source MCAT Course. It has over 350 hours of free online MCAT prep content that I’ve gathered and organized for you. It’s an excellent free alternative to paid MCAT courses and I highly suggest you give it a look.