"The CFA exams have destroyed my mental health"
I want to share my story about the CFA ® exams while remaining anonymous. I'd love to know whether other people are in the same position as me.
I've taken the CFA Level 1 exams twice, and both times I've failed. It's excruciating: the CFA exam qualifications have taken over my life.
It's not that I'm lazy. CFA Institute recommends that you spend 300 hours studying for each exam. So far, I have spent over 1,000 hours studying CFA exam material alongside my job in an investment bank, and I've only had two sittings.
The issue is that the CFA exams have become almost impossible to pass. The pass rate for level one in November 2021 was just 27%. In July, it was just 22%. Before 2021, the pass rate was comfortably above 40%.
I'd like to give up studying for the CFA Level 1 exam, but I can't. My boss is not happy that I've failed twice, and my career is at stake as a result - the expectation is that I will study again, and pass. But I have no idea what's required to get a pass - there's no transparency on how these exams are graded.
I don't want to go through this again. I have gained weight and lost my social life. Studying for the CFA exams has taken away my last vestiges of free time, and I now have no time whatsoever to do the things I really want. It's making me depressed and at times I have felt almost suicidal. I'm reaching out because I want to know if anyone else has had the same issue. Please let me know in the comments box beneath this article.
Adrian Moore is a pseudonym
If you're in the UK, you can contact call Samaritans for free on 116 123, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.samaritans.org. In the U.S., dial 1-800-273-8255 (1-800-273-TALK). In Singapore, contact the Samaritans of Singapore. In Hong Kong, contact the Samaritans of Hong Kong.
Photo by Akshay Chauhan on Unsplash
CFA Institute does not endorse, promote or warrant the accuracy or quality of eFinancialCareers. CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are registered trademarks owned by CFA Institute