Cue Card Sample

IELTS Cue Card Sample 79 - Describe a difficult thing you did well

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe a difficult thing you did well.

You should say:

  •  what it was
  •  how you did/completed it
  •  why (or how) it was difficult

and explain how you felt after you did/completed it.

Follow-up Questions:

  • Have other people (you know) had this success?
  • Did people congratulate you for doing this?
  • What are the main reasons people fail to reach their target?


Model Answer 1:
I never really needed to worry about my health or diet in the past because I have remained a reasonably healthy person for the most part of my life except suffering from some occasional flue and fever. But, about 6 months ago, my doctor told me that I was a bit too overweight for my age, and I was at the risk of being diabetic.

Needless to say, the doctor’s findings came to me as a piece of shocking news because, frankly speaking, I never really thought that I would have to worry about such health issues, especially, my overweight issue. But, it happened and I needed to get rid of that extra 10 kilos, which I gained over the years, except that it was a difficult thing to do.

So, the first thing, that I did, was to start consuming lesser and lesser carbohydrate, especially, the freshly-made “round flatbread” made from brown flour, which I just loved eating in my breakfast. The diets for my lunch and dinner also changed from eating meat and fishes to consuming vegetables. The diet control continued for a good 3 month time or so, but unfortunately, I wasn’t getting the expected result in my weight loss. Of course, the doctor also had told me that I would need to do some intensive physical exercises every day for about at least 6 months, but I was just too lazy to do that because it would put me on a tight schedule to go to my job and finish it on time. But, I still took the risk and started running for about an hour every day. Finally, after some extensive physical works and diet control, I was finally about to lose about 8 kilos of my weight.  

Needless to say, I felt really happy and relieved about the result, particularly, after making a lot of adjustments with my regular work and life schedules. Besides, after losing that extra weight, I felt that I had become more energetic than before as I felt much better and confident about myself as far as my look and shape were concerned.


Sample Answer 2:
In our life, we do so many difficult things knowingly and unknowingly. For some difficult tasks, we get appreciation and some remain unnoticed by others.

I would like to describe one of the difficult jobs I did and was appreciated as well. It was an event when I was around 18 years old and saved a little boy who was drowning in a pond. That day I was near a big pond in our town and all of a sudden I noticed a human hand in the water. No other part of the little boy's body could be seen except his hand that he was desperately trying to get up at the last moment of his life. Initially, I thought that I was just hallucinating and nothing was in the water but instantly I changed my mind and had been sure that it was a boy who was drowning. I took off my shoes and jumped into the water. Then I realised my mistake that I have not pointed out the exact place where I thought someone was sinking.

I desperately swam and went to the approximate place after I struggled for a few minutes. But there was none to be found. I started feeling very helpless and found some people were looking at me with curious eyes. I shouted that I saw a boy was drowning and trying to save him. I found 2-3 others also get into the water to find the boy. I felt overwhelmed by the urge to find the boy. All of a sudden I saw the flash on water and quickly reached there. I felt someone who I had felt with my body and I tried to pull out him from the water. But to my surprise, it seems impossible for me to bring the boy out of the water.

I used all of my force, energy and determination and will to get the boy from the water. I had to struggle a lot and I was sure how long it took me to bring him up. To me, it seemed like an eternity and finally, I had been able to grab the boy firmly and swam towards the land. I was worried because the boy had already lost his conscience and I tried my best to help him to breathe. I pulled down and up my hands very strongly over his chest and finally, he coughed. I felt very tired and yet happy that the boy was out of danger. Some people came to extend their helping hands and they took the boy to the nearby hospital. I went to the hospital and returned home when the boy was completely safe.

I felt really proud to be able to save the boy and the gratefulness I saw in the boy's parents is something I will never forget. People appreciated my bravery and efforts and I also felt very relieved and proud.


Tips for answering this cue card topic:

Some of the ideas to talk about for this Cue Card Topics:

1. You saved someone from drowning.
2. You accepted a challenge and won it.
3. You started to make awareness against crimes in your locality.
4. You made a team of people to protest an unfair decision or crime.
5. You won a foreign scholarship.
6. You helped someone to overcome a bad habit.
7. You quit a bad habit.
8. You won a campaign or election.
9. You were nominated as a chairperson of an important team/ party.
10. You won a competition.
11. You helped your team to win in a competition.

For the first question ‘what was it’ mention specifically what you did well which was not easy to do. Then mention why it was difficult and why you were determined to have it done. Then mention your personal passion/ determination and the benefits that it would bring. Later describe some of the obstacles you faced towards achieving it and also point out why finishing this particular task was very difficult.

For the final part mention your personal feelings after you achieved it/ have it done. Be very convincing in our answer and try to specifically mention your determination and hard work to achieve success.

Your ability to talk about this cue card would help you to talk about the following cue card topics as well:

1. Describe a success you have.
2. Describe a memorable event.
3. Describe a happy memory you have.
4. Describe a competition you took part in.
5. Describe a tough thing that you did easily.
6. Describe a time when you helped someone.

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