Decoded SSB Interview In 13th Attempt: Recommended For IAF

Hello friends, my name is Ganesh, First of all Thank You for choosing it to read. Friends, I have a huge respect for those who chose or are pursuing career in Armed Forces and Hats off to all SSB repeaters as well. I respect all boards that rejected me, because it led to a great improvement in me. If you are going for SSB with dedication and hardwork, you will surely come up with achievement either in the form of recommendation or Self Confidence. 02 Screened out, 10 Conference out and finally a recommendation, This Beautiful Journey was started in 2012, When I started thinking to becoming an Officer in Armed Forces and it was Dec 2013, when I appeared in SSB at 03 AFSB, Gandhinagar for the first time. I made it to Phase -2 but could not get recommendation then the list goes on like 01 AFSB Dehradun, 02 AFSB Mysore, 05AFSB (Mini) Kanchrapara, 04AFSB Varanasi. There is no AFSB left where I didn’t go twice, even it also happened twice that I was interviewed by same IO(Interviewing Officer ), almost same set of questions asked, Same set of pictures shown in TAT. To cut the story short, I will say that “If you will change nothing, nothing will change.”  After going again and again and coming back with same non recommendation as the result, somewhere I started doubting myself. But Thanks to my surroundings, Friends, Family, Motivational Books, I didn’t quit. Even after continued failures, I had one line in my mind ‘Jab Tak Todenge Nahi, Tab Tak Chhodenge Nahi (I’ll not stop till conquest)’. One thing was very much clear that assured me that I could see the gradual improvement in me due to the efforts I put in. My Group mates have started telling me that you will make it. I read the book  “Power of Subconscious Mind – Joseph Murphy”, I Started following its idea. I imparted all 15 OLQs in my subconscious mind by remembering it every time, everywhere. Started thinking about them during execution of every task that how an officer will do it. I was so desperate for it. Moreover, I am very thankful to Manoj sir, Rudra Sir, Satyaveer sir, Gulaab Sir, Shyam sir so on. The list is so long, I have taken inspiration from each and every one. All the inspiring journeys wrote in articles of SSBCRACK helped me a lot in my journey.

So here is the overview of my recent  SSB where I got recommended, I’ll put forward my experience along with some tips:

After 12 learning attempts, one more SSB was calling me on 28 Oct 19 at 04 AFSB, Varanasi, It was a peak festive season(Diwali),  somewhere I felt to give priority to my family rather than to go for this attempt and I also started searching options for absentee batch.

But one call changed my mind or can say changed my life. My SSB mate Shyam Jani sir had called me and convinced me to go for it together.  We had almost 20 days with us.  We started polishing ourselves, did mock interviews of each others, worked on physical fitness.


  1. It is always good to go with good physical appearance and stamina.
  2. Start living SSB in your routine, think of recommendation, give your subconscious mind a image of rank of your shoulders, dream of it.
  3. Sit alone, Write your SD (Self Description) in almost one page then cut it short to 5-6  Lines including all your good things. Try to not use any quality directly but write through actions: Like instead of writing I am social, can write I love to attend social gatherings/ go for tours with friends. In this way these lines will automatically reflect that you are social.
  4. Practice filling your PIQ, remember all information on your finger tips.
  5. Practice Psych Test, include your PIQ, SD in all responses. Try to Make story that can easily be correlated with your personality. Because  TAT plays a vital role in Psych Testing.

I reported at Varanasi Railway station at 06:00 AM on 28 Oct 19 along with my friends, we were received by Airforce personnel and taken to AFSB Centre in Airforce bus. After registration process at AFSB we were assembled in testing hall for phase one testing:

OIR test was pretty simple, practicing cubes and dices and other reasoning exercises help there.

Attend all the answer, do it quickly, leave questions that take more time and attend it later if you have left with time, take care while marking of your answers in answer sheet. Keep yourself calm and confident.

Then we were shown a hazy picture, wrote story on it. Try to make story on Social issue, Innovative but practical ideas. Don’t manipulate the numbers of characters. Narration and Discussion also plays that main role.

After writing story, got 10-15 mins for distribution of group, queuing. I completed my story in mind, made overview that how I am going to deliver it. Don’t waste time here in chitchatting and discussing stories. Be confident. I narrated the story well. Keep eye contacts with the whole group and don’t look at assessors, speak with clear, confident and loud voice so that others can take interest. During discussion taking part is very important, speak sense. Put your ideas forward, if you feel that nobody is supporting your story and ideas then go with the idea of majority in the group. Be clear, be a man of group. Don’t be dominating. Keep yourself cool and calm and keep passing smile (Not the fake one). Show your potential that you are worthy for further testing.

So after this test, it was the time for announcement of results, I got screened in along with few of my friends. Total of 185 persons reported at AFSB and 54 got recommended for phase-2. I was very happy for the selection of my friends along with me. We went for lunch, came back, and had a thorough document check. Here it is advisable to keep a summary of all marks, qualification, SSB attempts handy, It helps in filling forms and PIQ.

After that we got 2 Hours rest, rooms were allotted to us as per group and chest no. We Took rest (Nap for sometime is very helpful here) and after waking up,  I read my SD again and reported back for Psych test at 1800 Hrs.  

We reported for Psych, A beautiful ma’am was there for conduct of testing.  Though, I was aware about all the instructions but still listened all the instructions carefully. First TAT was begun. 11 pictures with different-2 terrains, characters, moods were shown. I wrote stories including blank story. Instead of start writing just after having a glance on image, It is  better to observe the picture deeply from every corner.  Before start writing make a plot, actions, conclusion otherwise stories will be messed up. Don’t write lot of line for Intro of story, focus on Action Part, End the story with giving information some future task fulfilled by Hero. Write stories in past tense. Then WAT, There were 60 words shown, I wrote responses for 58 words. All responses were pure, no manipulation, earlier practice helps you in time management. Give responses that show your personality, rare facts. Some of the current awareness can be written, if you get numb on any word. Don’t write suggestions, quotes, sayings.  It’s pretty easy. Then we were given a set of SRT, it contended 60 Situations. I attended 34 of it. Here quality matters over quantity.  Write your true response, don’t forget your goal or what you were doing before the problem, end it with completion of that task. Write it in short forms, don’t bother to write full sentence, it is good to write in Past Tense.  Then I wrote SD that have 5 Para, needs to write in 15 mins. SD is all about self analysis and having crucial role in Psych as well as in Interview. So write truth and things that you can justify in Personal Interview. There are lot more things to say about Psych Testing. But overall your Introspection and vigilance attitude will help you a lot.

We were done with testing by around 0930, took dinner, saw our next day schedules, went to bed. We had conversation with our mates, introduced each other, I was known to some of them.  Next day I was free as nothing was scheduled for my chest no. I had Breakfast, at 0645 Hrs attended the roll call, went to recreational room, enjoyed watching TV. I also shared my content of GD and lecturette with group mates. In evening we went to Kashi Vishvanath Temple, enjoyed sweets and Dahi Chaat on the streets of Kashi.  Next day I had my Interview, I went through my introspection contents that I wrote during my preparation.  I went for interview, waited there for around 2 Hours. I kept my self-calm, my buddies were discussing about various current issue. I made my mind that it’s not new to me and plan to give clear and straight answers without any justification until asked. Here I kept in mind the line told by Satyveer sir ”Instead of taking begging position, stand for your views”. After going in the room, I offered a warm handshake by IO Sir. He started asking about my previous attempts, reason of my non recommendations.  It was not like a normal interview where you are made comfortable by asking questions about my stay, journey etc.  Direct rapid fire questions asked from my school to career, then again college, friends, family, hobbies and interests. About my Sports Participation. Questions were so random.  He also cross questioned on few answers. While I was answering the questions, he tried to divert me. He started scratching in teeth with toothpicks, yawning, and showed disinterest in my answers. But I kept answering with confidence. He also asked me about current happenings in the world, capital of Turkey, President of Turkey, recent Airforce acquisitions. I answered with confidence. Here it is to be noted that there is no issue if you don’t give answer but don’t give wrong information.  In this way my Interview went smooth and I was happy with it. But I felt scope of improvement was there. I came back to room, shared all the things with buddies, enjoyed with them. Next day we had GT. 

It started with Group Discussion about Air Pollution and India’s relations with ASEAN  Countries. I initiated second discussion, put forward my views, current happenings. Here it is important to talk sense, data, and your experiences on the topics. Don’t dominate others if you have sound knowledge. Be the man of group. Convey your points politely, avoid hand gestures, don’t show anger. Think like a group not like individual. Support others valid points too. Then there was Group Planning Exercise. I made an image of plan in my mind, wrote the plan with full details and Participated well in discussion.   Then we GTO sir took us for outdoor Task. It was fun doing things with friends, here also be a team member, don’t think for individual goals. Keep working, giving ideas. If any idea is workable then go with it and don’t waste time to show your idea and implement it separately.  All your efforts will be noted by GTO sir, don’t worry about that.  In command task he asked about my failure, hobbies, work etc. I finished the task well. Then in lecturette, four topics were given on card. I choose 1st topic (Carbon Footprint), spoke on it with confidence, tried to touch different horizons of topics. Here it is not necessary to choose 1st topic that is little difficult to be chosen.  Speaking and delivering content is more important.  Then in Individual Obstacles, I attended 8 out of 10 including (Tiger leap and Rope climbing). In Ind. Obs. Listen the instructions of GTO sir carefully, show your courage, stamina and never give up attitude while execution of tasks.

In this way all the testing were done, After 2nd day of GT, we had our conference on 01 Nov 2019.  I got freshen up and reported for conference. Before calling me in the conference room, discussion went for around 25-30 Mins, Then they called me in, asked me about my performance, my current work and stay at AFSB. They took just 2-4 Mins and told me ‘All the best’.  My Friends have started predicting about my recommendation. After lunch, results were announced, DSO sir called chest no of recommended guys, he called chest no 28, that was me. I was shocked and surprised. DSO sir asked me what happened. I answered ‘sir it was a long journey’. My dream came true. All my sleepless nights were paid off.  I got frozen for a while, thinking what to do. I thanked almighty, my buddy who was there Shyam Jani sir and all my group mates. After that I got some time to inform my family members about my recommendation and they were really very happy to learn this. After that we filled some essentials forms at AFSB and on the same day in the night I caught a train for return journey. It was a life time memorable day for me.

 I have my medical on 06 Jan 20 at AFCME, New Delhi. I got recommended for MET Branch in IAF.  Last words for all the aspirants : Never Give up, Go with Preparation, Have faith in System and your Potential.  

Thank you. Keep progressing.

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