Hi all Aspirants and Future Officers of the Defence Services of our Nation!! Myself Riya Iyer and I have got Recommended in SSB 4 times the last being 2 AFSB Mysore. Due to a good experience of SSBs and Clearing all the SSBs that I have attempted(4 Attempts) so far I would Like to share my experience and which I think will be helpful for all freshers as well as repeaters. SPARK: I am an Engineer(Electronics and Telecommunication) from a non-Defence background. I became aware of the Engineer’s Entry to the Indian Armed forces While I was in my college. I am a Martial Arts Player and me representing India in Asian Beach Games, Da-Nang, Vietnam further boosted my motivation towards this dream. As an Engineer working in a corporate firm, I got the final push towards my dream and the Posts from SSBCrack really helped. The timely Notifications for various entries and the inspirational stories others were some posts which helped me in many ways to realize my dream.
SSB PREPARATION: I wanted to take coaching as I felt that would make me serious about my Goal. I googled and Found “Shatrujeet Academy” in Thane, Maharashtra. Contacted them, cleared their Entrance test, met the Director along with my father and had a wonderful experience of Counselling Guidance. We were completely clear about this career path and way to achieve it. The basic concept is that one’s Psychology is the most important thing for this service. We can improve our Knowledge, Current Affairs, Technical Know-how, Physical fitness etc. but improving Psych according to SSB standards requires Practical training. Also, a person’s Psych requires a certain period of time to get molded naturally and may not be possible in 1 or 2 weeks. Further, practical training molds psychology in the most natural and best way. I started preparing 6 months before SSB reporting date.
- As a fresher:
- SSC Tech Army (19 SSB, Allahabad): Recommended with AIR 3
As a fresher, I made sure to highly exploit all the opportunities that I got at SSB. Since I had reported at SSB with proper preparation of indoor as well as outdoor tasks, I was aware what to do in spite of being a fresher. This is the biggest advantage one gets when one comes prepared.
Screening In was quite easy as it was a fresher’s group. The most important trick here in to listen to each and everyone’s story attentively and discuss in the group accordingly. I had practiced this with my group at Shatrujeet Academy hence, it was easier to convince all to nominate me for the Group story. My story also had a good plot and I attribute it to the Psych training that I got which naturally helped me write good stories.
Psych tests also went well as I not only got a basic Idea about the type of tests from SSBCrack and other Videos but also did I practice well. Stories are a reflection of your own life events in the past 6 months or from childhood. Since I was doing many practical training tasks prior to SSB, it was reflected in my Psych.
GTO tasks were quite good. Regular physical exercise (Running and Pushups most important) helps a lot. My martial arts practice also helped me. I won 2 Gold medals in a State level tournament just a day before leaving for SSB. I had trained myself for GTO tasks by attending A 2-Day Adventure Cum SSB Camp by Shatrujeet Adventures which involved complete practical training instrumental in my success.
Team sports(football/volleyball/basketball) helps one become a better team member and a leader as well. Playing with your own Group members in SSB also helps.
My interview lasted for about 45mins and questions ranging from engineering core subjects to family and friends. Since the common interview questions were known, I was well prepared and it went quite smooth. A flexible and a learning attitude in most important for this test.
In My conference I was again asked the same technical question which I couldn’t ask during interview. I had learned it and answered well.
I got recommended in the 1st attempt and also scored All India Rank 3 in Merit but couldn’t join OTA due to documentation issue
- As a Repeater:
- Indian Coast Guard Asst. Commandant (GD): Recommended
- Indian Air Force Ground Duty AFCAT Tech Entry (3 AFSB Gandhinagar): Recommended
- Indian Air Force Ground Duty AFCAT Non-Tech Entry (2 AFSB Mysore): Recommended
As a repeater getting screened in is a challenge due to the infamous ‘Fish Market’ in PPDT. Basic strategy is: Good story making. Psych preparation helps in a good story plot. Practice helps in good narration. For discussion again the key point is being attentive to all other stories during narration phase. Utilizing others stories helps gain team support. This makes one a good leader and a better team player. Practicing Group Discussion with my group at Shatrujeet Academy really helped me tackle this fish market.
Psychology test must also improve its count compared to previous SSB if you are a repeater. Even though, I was a recommended candidate, I always strived to bring at least 1% improvement in every SSB. The higher the attempts in WAT, SRT, TAT the better one can express themselves to the evaluator. Events in the last 3 to 6 months highly influence one’s psychology. Hence a positive environment is very essential. Being a Working Professional in a corporate firm, it was challenging to get that environment. But I was fortunate enough that and I got this positive environment in Shatrujeet Academy. Regular connection with Nature helps detoxification of mind and body. Along with Nature’s touch, a competitive peer group was like a cherry on the cake!
GTO tests must show an improvement if you are a repeater. Being a repeater, one is aware of the type of individual obstacles that are present in the ground. Arm and upper body strengthening exercises and very essential for outdoor tasks. Enhancing team co-ordination from day 1 is essential. Remember, in GTO tasks you should win as a team i.e. aim should be maximum recommendation from the group rather that looking at group members as competitors. Practical training in Camping helped me a lot. Various Current Affairs articles in SSBCrack helped me in GD.
My interview lasted for 30mins on an average. Questions were 90% related to PIQ form, Previous attempts, Personal Questions and 10% on GK and Current Affairs. Interview checks the consistency of a candidate. It checks if the answers match with the TAT storylines, the WAT statements, the SRT and Self-Description answers. All my responses to personal questions at the interview were completely true. But, the power of expressing it in the best way was something that requires practice and an Expert Analysis.
- Stay Positive by being in a company of positive, energetic and passionate people especially 3-4 months before SSB
- If you are a fresher, exploit the opportunity and prepare well for all tests and tasks. Use expert opinion for analyzing your responses of Psych tests instead of evaluating yourself.
- If you are a repeater, show improvement in all tasks and tests as compared to previous SSB. 1 % improvement every day is what matters. Take care of detailed self-analysis for self enhancement.
- Regular Physical exercise targeting running stamina and Arm strength is important which should reflect in Individual Obstacles
- Connection with nature by regular treks, camps and adventure activities highly adds up to ones OLQs
- Last but the most important thing: FOCUS. I myself am a sports Player, a working professional and a have a big social circle. But my top priority was becoming an Officer. Shatrujeet Academy was instrumental in helping me maintain focus on my Goal. Focusing on two things should be avoided if this is your ultimate aim in life.
Thus, due to the proper projection of my natural personality in various tests and tasks I was successful in all my SSB attempts! All the vert best to all defence aspirants! Consistent self-improvement and “Standing up and fighting each time” shall definitely get you to the Golden Steps of your Success!