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Mind games

I am sitting writing this article when in fact I should be revising – my re-sit for my AF4 investment planning exam is now tomorrow afternoon!
Since my last article, I have refocused to pass this exam in October and have put in a lot of additional study. It is a challenging subject and exam and I attended a CII face-to-face revision day to spend time with other delegates and a CII-accredited trainer to go over exam techniques and core syllabus material, which was a good use of time. I even managed to show someone how to use their scientific calculator.

The other interesting event I attended – which I found most enjoyable but also very beneficial – was presented by David Thomas GMM, US memory champion and Guinness Book of Records memory record holder. This was a fun event where he shared real memory techniques that had guaranteed results with the audience (I can still clearly remember the 20 objects we were asked to remember from an exercise we did).

His experience was valuable as he taught us that the power of our memory is captured in our imagination because we think in images and colour and not in words. That is why we find so many textbooks with white pages and black printed words hard to remember. If they were in colour, with pictures and graphics, we would retain much more.

We then spent time working on producing mind maps, including colour and graphics. He advised us that when we are studying, we should convert our text books into colourful mind maps, where we will retain much more of the data and make it far easier to revise.

I have therefore been using the mind-mapping techniques to prepare study notes from the textbook and revise. I will use this technique for my future studies as I think that it is really valuable.

The other area that I have been spending a lot of time on is past papers and I have been working through a lot of these provided by the CII. This is also beneficial in repetitively covering the material and identifying weaknesses. It is also good practice for the actual exam in terms of timing, structure and technique.

I will now go and make best use of my final day’s revision before my exam. It is challenging and hard at times but I keep in mind my goal of achieving chartered financial planner status as the gold standard in financial planning, which I believe will bring many benefits and opportunities to financial planners and to their businesses in the future.

Garry Hale
HK Wealth Managers


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