CCIE lab prep starts

It has been two weeks since I passed the CCIE R&S written exam and I must admit I am a little disappointed with myself. Instead of hitting the books, VODs and labs, I am more into motivational stuff, I just acquired a number of books from Zig Ziglar, Joel Osteen, Tim Robbins. At the back of my mind, CCIE is more than just a skill test but a heart and mental test.

I do acknowledge that only 5-10% of people who took the lab exam pass on their first attempt. I do want to become part of that elite group passing this elite certification. I do want to pass on my first attempt and will do whatever it takes to achieve it. So after the written exam, I devoted 2 weeks prepping up mentally and physically before I go deep into the lab studies.

So part of my non-negotiable now everyday is to wake up at 5am and go for an exercise atleast 30min every single day. During those 30 minutes I feed my mind with motivational/inspirational speeches from Les Brown, Tim Robbins, Zig Ziglar. I can attest starting out the day like this made significant improvement in areas in my life specially at work.

But all these motivational stuff can only take me so far, unless I start studying, hit the books and the labs. So I have started setting up my calendar to hit study goals for each week. I am still looking for CCIE study groups in my area if not in Australia, so far I have been unsuccessful or maybe I have just not looked long enough to find them.

Cheesy as it may sound, but really I am still amazed I got the written exam. I am really halfway there. But if I think about it deeply, its only the beginning.

CCIE Written exam done and dusted!

“You know, sometimes all you need is 20 seconds of insane courage, just literally 20 seconds of embarrassing bravery, and I promise you something great will come of it.”

– Benjamin Mee “We bought a zoo”

My last post was the news I booked the CCIE written exam, last week I made the bold move to move my exam not further but at the same week I booked the exam. Yes, as it was crazy and believe me I sat my exam in constant prayer that every time I hit the next button I would at least understand the next question that would come up.

100 questions in a little more than 2 hours, it was out of control. So I arrived in the testing centre 30 min before my exam. I have decided to take the exam in the same testing centre where I took my CCNA R&S exam. I did everything out of ritual, same testing centre, arrived 30 minutes before the exam and same day I took all my previous exam, Thursday.

I took the first exam slot which is 9am. 8:30am I was already in the parking area, feeling anxious I walked around the area. In my mind I was going through VRFs, IPv6, LDP etc, knowing Cisco, this test would all be about curve balls. It will not be your usual R&S questions about routing, IGPs, BGP, switching stuff, I feel like they’d reserve that for the lab. 9am, situated myself, after the usual registration, sat infront of the computer, the moment I saw the cisco logo, my heart started beating faster.

Going through the exam itself, a part of me was telling me “Delan what have you done?, your stupidity of listening to that stupid movie line will cost you $512. Why didn’t you just give yourself enough time to study?”. But I told myself “Shut up! I am taking an exam! it’s either you help me search my brain muster an answer or keep quiet” 🙂 yes sometimes I feel like I have schizophrenia, hearing voices in my head. I hope not.

Anyway I got to question 100, it took me a minute or two to decide the next button because I know, once I click that, that’s it. Besides you can’t go back to the previous questions. To my delight I got a passing score. It wasn’t the same score as my previous Cisco exams but then again…a pass is a pass.

It took a day before it sank into me that I really did it. Half the battle is done. The big one is coming…

CCIE R&S Written attempt

If you have been following this blog site, it has been my ultimate quest to get my CCIE R&S certification and get that number. Well, I have just booked my exam. Believe me, I didn’t do it because I am all set. I did it because, it is inevitable anyway that I will have to take this exam.

There has been numerous times I would get to study the materials, I basically have all I need in terms of the written exam. I just can’t commit myself to dig into the books and have a solid schedule to study just like how I did it with my other certs.

Since this is the CCIE, I knew I had to do everything differently. This is the pinnacle of every Cisco guy’s certification journey. Booking the exam will just force me to commit to it, no backing out and no more options of opting out. So…here we go ;p