CPA Exam Story: I’ve failed 6 times so far.

I thought I was resilient until I met Brandon Naar.

He has failed six times so far: REG and AUD twice each, FAR and BEC once each.

However, he’s been able to pass FAR and REG eventually, and is waiting on his latest AUD and BEC scores to be released December 19th.

Brandon is autistic. I only mention that because it’s a fact of life for him. But its only that, a fact. He doesn’t let it dictate his life, not if he can help it. He strides forward in spite of it, in pursuit of his goal to become a Certified Public Accountant.

He epitomizes the dogged ambition that says, “It doesn’t matter how long it takes. I’ll get what I want.”

The lack of focus, irritability and a myriad of other attributes that accompany autism definitely makes his triumph noteworthy.

So, take a page out of Brandon’s book, and don’t give up on your CPA goal.

The exam is hard, period.

It was hard for me, for my Summa Cum Laude friend, and clearly harder for Brandon.

The passing rate for each section ranges between 45% and 50%. That means that half the people who take any section fail it.


Let that sink in for a second.

Thousands of people are failing a section each year.

It makes sense that a couple hundred are throwing in the towel and giving up altogether.

Brandon and I don’t want you giving up.

When you’re going through hell, keep going. – Winston Churchil

You have to commit to the process and see it through.

Here’s why:

Perfectly summed up in a quote by Mike Sturm.

Buddhists have a word in Pali: anicca – which underlies the entire buddhist philosophy. Essentially, it means impermanence. Nothing remains as it is forever. On top of that, most things fade away or change radically within a short period of time. This is especially true of feelings and circumstances.

However you’re feeling right now, it will pass. It rarely seems like it, but it will. Some sadness may remain, but it will not be as sharp… You may be elated at having gotten that raise, bought that house, etc. – but that will also pass.

So don’t stop because of how you may feel.

Like Brandon, keep moving forward and do what needs to be done, in spite of your feelings.

Update 9/17/2018: Brandon finally passed all sections of the CPA Exam. It took him 2 years and a multitude of tries but he did it.

It can be done!

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