What CPA Exam Success Feels Like

By Brandon Vagner, CPA, Ph.D. & Former KPMG Manager

Do you remember as a kid when the bell rang that last day of school before summer?  That feeling you got when you left school that last day knowing you had the entire summer ahead of you and nothing hanging over your head to get done or study for?  Times that by 1,000 and that is how it feels to pass the CPA exam! It is one of the best feelings ever.

I’ll never forget the feeling of sheer joy when I found out I passed FAR.  It was the first section I attempted.  I devoted my entire winter break to studying for FAR.  I treated it like a 9am – 5pm job for 5 weeks, and absolutely studied my tail off.  FAR was the one section I was most worried about, and that is why I wanted to just get it out of the way first.  If you are curious about why studying for FAR turned out to be a critical strategy decision, be sure to subscribe below to my free email list here at CPA Exam Success.

I was beyond nervous as I sat and pondered about looking at the results.  I knew deep down that passing FAR would be a huge momentum boost for me, and I was pretty confident my CPA exam review course effectively prepared me.  I also knew that failing would mean falling behind, and potentially not getting the CPA exam completely passed before my start date at KPMG that following October.

As I stood there about to pass out from being so nervous, I opened the results and had PASSED.  I still to this day remember feeling like an elephant was just lifted off my chest.  It was the biggest sense of relief I had ever felt in my life.  That’s saying a lot for me too, because I was a highly competitive golfer at the time and got some pretty big rushes of relief during serious tournaments.  Passing that first part was by far the most critical thing I had done in my life from a professional stand point.  It was HUGE and one of the greatest feelings ever.

Finding out I passed my last part was even better than finding out I passed FAR.  It was such a sense of accomplishment and joy knowing I could start KPMG without that darn exam hanging over my head.  It was one of the best days of my life, and i’m sure it will be for you too.

When you pass your CPA exam, be sure to come back to this post and leave a comment describing how you felt.  I’d love to hear how it was for you, and especially if I, in some way, have been able to help you through the CPA exam process via any of my posts, emails, or the CPA Exam Success mastermind group.

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