I was to write a Licensing exam, required to allow me to continue with my current career, should I choose. The “problem” was that I just did not feel like studying. I wondered if I was maybe removing a safety net – that if I failed the exam, I would not be able to return to my current career. My heart reminded me that I did not want to continue with that line of work anyway. My mind said that it would be a good idea to get licensed “just in case”.
The day before the exam, I opened the study text, and it was like my vision went right through the print, the words didn’t even register. And the feeling of “Not Wanting To” came over me really strongly and it was like I remembered so many times, that I had made myself do something that I didn’t want to do. And I put the study text away. After that, I felt calm – like something had been decided and everything would be OK – either I would pass the exam or it wouldn’t matter. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to having a few anxious moments before I went to sleep that night. The idea that I might wake in terror in the wee hours and do some frantic last minute “cramming” felt like a possibility.
What’s up with me and this exam that I’m writing today? You are releasing a control that says that writing this exam is necessary for you or for anyone. What does the exam prove for either those who choose to continue with this work or for you who are choosing not to continue?
Yet I sense to write the exam, not to just sit home. Yes because by writing the exam you will learn something – possibly that you can pass the exam without studying, possibly that the material is totally irrelevant, possibly that you can now play with something that others take so seriously.
Following this conversation I called a cab to take me to the building where I was to write the exam, as I didn’t feel sufficiently grounded to deal with looking for parking, etc. Once in the exam room, I read through the exam and I had the thought that I knew “about 80%” of the material. So I wrote in my answers, handed in the papers and left the room in a bit of a daze, like I couldn’t believe what I had just done.
A few days later I opened my mailbox to see that the exam results had arrived. I sat for a bit before opening the envelope asking myself what I wanted the results to say. When I reached the point where I was OK either way pass or fail, I opened the envelope. I had passed. And guess what my score was? 78%. Now, it’s true that this was not an unknown field for me. I had been working in it for 6 years. Still, I find it significant that I had known that I knew “about 80%” and I scored 78%. We really do know a lot.