What's your life like besides studying for CFA?

I’m wondering what everyone is doing besides studying for their CFA exams. Do you only work and study? Anyone doing work, university study, and CFA at the same time? Do you still have time for other activities, time with family and friends, socialising, movies, sports or other hobbies?

I just finished my undergrad, but for my last semester I was doing full-time co-op, three courses, CAIA L2 study, and teaching myself R and VBA on the side. So, not too much time for much else…I haven’t partied in about 2 years, and most of the free time I get I will just watch a movie of something to relax.

Hm… Well outside of studying, here’s my typical life:

Work 8-4 m-f. After work, chill around the house watching tv, run errands, etc.

Summers: every weekend camp/weddings/bbq’s/golfing. This summers has been crazy busy so I’m way behind on studying now.

Winters: snowboard/ski, get-togethers with family/friends.

Fall: hunt, actually stay in town for the weekend

Spring: Find a patio and get drunk

I live right by the mountains (Calgary) so its really hard not to get out there every chance I get, which is funny since I’m really not actually much of an outdoorsy guy. I just like any excuse to not hit the books :wink:

I still socialize, I just don’t partake in all the fun since my liver does not work like it used to. I plan my study schedule around events I’ve committed to attending, hang out with friends and family when I have made my time for the week, and make sure to schedule in a couple pilates classes or work out during lunch if I’m feeling burnt out.

I think it’s important to have some free time to clear your head and relax. I work 8-5 (sometimes later) and then study in the evenings and on weekends. It’s worked out pretty well so far, you just have to discipline yourself and let your friends know that your schedule will be structured a little different the next few months.

Some of them give me a hard time, especially when I do hang out and politely decline to partake in their shenanigans–but they understand and I think most respect my restraint. I’ve enjoyed mixing up the routine as well, it’s put a lot in perspective since you allot time for the things that are most important.

Very balanced life! So lucky! Will there be investment jobs in the mountains? :wink:

Wah, you are so hard working and disciplined

I guess exercise is vitally important for everything else but I just so don’t feel like exercising when I’m so stressed about other things ;(

I just passed L3 but about 95% of my last 5 years have consisted of the following (approximately in this order):

  • work
  • study for CFA exams
  • spend time with the wife and kids (now age 6 and almost 2)
  • sleep

Occasionally spent time with friends, but never had anywhere near the social life they had. They gave me a hard time about it but my general work ethic has resulted in about 2x the annual income (and growing), so I’m cool with it.

xtreme hard work for 4 yrs + some good fortune

Sacrificed a lot of fun life enjoyment. But the hard work is really paying off

I don’t regret it up until now. The big dividends haven’t even started yet

got nothing going on :-(…failed L3/not sure whether to retake…unemployed/unemployable…fooling around in R.

Im sure the knowledge you gained by passing two levels won’t be a waste no matter what.

Congratulations! That’s very inspiring. When are you going to be a charter holder?

Have forgotten most of it already :-)…which level are you preparing for Mojo?

Pretty much studying CFA and my job takes up about 80% of my week. I try to squeeze in some social life and sleep in the other 20%.

I even moved within 10 minutes of my office so I can save 1 hr per day in travel time (5 - 6 hours per week) and be more time efficient.

Doing Level II now and following the same pattern: Go to Work, (try to maintain job that is), stay in office after 6pm and study for 2-3 hours, go to a bar around 9pm. Drink until 11pm-12am. While at bar, rehearse formulas in my head. If you can remember the formulas when your drunk of your a… then you can remember them sober. This worked for me for Level I. The only bad thing was, the cost of so much booze, and becoming a functional alcoholic. On weekends, no drinking (thus avoided friends and NFL games), I just exercise and study, when weather was nice, tried to study outdoors. Social life was non-existent for the most part. Romance was the occasional one night stand with a hostess or waitress at said bars. Rinse. Repeat.


I’ve been debating staying late and studying at the office some nights to avoid the slump that occurs after a commute; did you find that more helpful than a library or home?

And I concur on the formulas when drinking–I owned the Macaroni Grill paper table overing during a wine induced self memorization test.

Yes, staying late in the office helped, I would do it at least Mon - Thurs. Also ate dinner in office.

As for the library, I used to go, but last time I went, I got attacked by a schizophrenic homeless man. I was about to use my BAII Plus as a weapon, try to hit him in the jugular with it, but he grabbed it and threw it. So now I don’t go to public libraries(in NYC), because people are getting freakier and more dangerous by the moment these days.

So you haven’t worked in the industry yet?

I only just signed up for Level 1 yesterday… Don’t know when I’ll receive the international shipping of books and schweser notes? I’m studying part time postgraduate finance this semester at uni and my new full time job (which isn’t investment related) will start sometime next month. I can deal with minimal socialising with friends but together with uni, work and some other hobbies (like photography) I haven’t worked out a plan for CFA exam yet, which led to the creation of this post.

To the guys who remember the formulas while drinking. I really admire you.

And I like this picture added onto my post. Clocks clocks clocks~~~

cheeky funny


I think everyone must at least still have one side of social life, which is this forum.

i procreate.

baby last june.

baby due any day.