I don't know about you guys but I'm sick of writing advice articles so because it's Friday and I've pretty much given up on there being anything worth talking about except Romney's tax returns and Obama's socialist tendencies for the next month, let's look at some easy ways to completely blow the CPA exam.
Learn by osmosis Remember, like, a year ago when you got an exciting package of brand new CPA review books in the mail and excitedly tore open the box only to decide the moment you encountered that 950 page FAR book that you'd have time to study later, whereby later becomes months down the road when you're using the upside down box as an end table? If you want to fail the CPA exam, learning by osmosis is your very best bet! Don't even bother flipping through those materials, the point is you spent $3,000 on them and that's all you have to do! Just to be safe, use your BEC book to keep your wobbly dining room table level and hide the rest of the materials somewhere where they will not tempt you (I suggest a dark closet or the trunk of your car or, better, the trunk of your friend's car). Surely you've heard learning by osmosis success stories at your firm, like the friend of a friend who got 99s on all four parts on the same day and didn't study at all. You can do this! Remember: you're aiming for anything below a 75, so as long as you don't crack open those books, you have nothing to worry about.
Treat yourself like absolute shit in the weeks leading up to the exam Cramming is great… when you're 20. Guess what, kiddo? You're not 20 anymore. Abusing your body with sugary energy drinks, a poor diet, hardly any sleep and the stress of studying for the CPA exam is a great way to guarantee you won't pass. So if you're aiming for a 60, you'll want to load up on Red Bull, eat nothing but Taco Bell and make sure to stay up until 4 in the morning playing Call of Duty for as many consecutive nights as possible.
Be a doormat for friends, family, bosses and coworkers Listen, no one likes the guy studying for the CPA exam who does more complaining about how hard it is to balance everything than actual studying. So don't be that guy. Instead, don't say anything. When your great aunt who you haven't spoken to in years needs a ride to the hospital, take her! When your brother needs you to help him pick up a free couch he found on Craigslist 60 miles away, help him! Oh, and that girlfriend of yours who you haven't really liked in at least 6 months but won't break up with until you're done with the exam just so you can at least look forward to a celebratory BJ when you pass FAR? Keep her around! In fact, suggest she move in. Her constant nagging and dragging you out to Bed Bath & Beyond to look at duvet covers will do wonders for your plan to fail the exam. Bonus points if you knock her up; nothing says "I'm really sabotaging myself on this exam" like inviting a screaming, helpless baby into your home.
Surround yourself with distractions How many tabs do you have open in your browser right now? If you don't have at least a few Facebooks, Twitter, Going Concern, Google News, LOLcats, YouTube AND SFW Porn, you're not trying hard enough. For optimum CPA exam failure, be sure to check Facebook between every practice MCQ (if you are even bothering with those) because God forbid you don't know what your friends' baby is doing at all hours of the day and night. Keep your phone on and close while studying and, just to be safe, better send out a mass text to all your friends to make sure you have pointless conversations to keep you busy during that all important study time you have set aside. "Sup?" will suffice, no need to overdo it.
Master the art of complaining Taking the CPA exam is hard, everyone knows that. But just to make sure they know that, you need to make it your mission to tell them at every opportunity just how hard it is. Never mind that they never actually see you studying, the important thing here is to communicate to every human being and slightly lucid dog you encounter just how hard your life is because of this stupid exam. When a stranger makes an awkward comment about the weather in the elevator, that's your cue to whine about the exam. Next time one of those obnoxious Greenpeace dudes with a clipboard asks you if you have 5 minutes for the environment, you turn around and ask him if he has 10 minutes to listen to you complain about the CPA exam. There are countless opportunities for complaining; Wal-mart greeters, grocery store clerks, the mailman, toll booth operators, homeless dudes with cardboard signs at freeway on-ramps – this captive audience is just waiting for you to come along and tell them how much you hate the CPA exam, despite having not actually studied much.
So, happy failures, CPA exam candidates!