“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”. Hello, folks. I recently got recommended second time on 8 Sep 2020 for SSC(T)-55 and the first one was for NDA-136 on 30 Jan 2016. Today I intend to share my learnings and give back what SSBCRACK gave me almost daily to keep me motivated “SUCCESS STORY”.
Introduction: I am Rutul Patel (21) from Gandhinagar. I completed my schooling from SAINIK SCHOOL BALACHADI in 2016. I appeared for the NDA(II) examination in 2015 and was recommended in the first attempt but unfortunately was medical out. I had -4.5 D power in both the eyes and the acceptable limit for INDIAN ARMY is -2.5D.
So, soon after I was declared unfit, I decided to get into forces through Graduation entries. In graduation entries, Lasik surgery for eye is allowed.
To start with this was my 4th attempt and I had my reporting at Kapurthala on 4th Sep 2020. On the reporting day, 143 candidates reported and 18 got screened in. Now many aspirants can relate to the pain of getting screened out, but with that, I have also seen people who blame the system for not getting screened in. To all those Gentlemen I have a request that even after performing your best if you get screened out. Please don’t blame the system or anything else. Because by doing so you are throwing away that golden opportunity of improving yourself. So, take up the responsibility of failure and come better prepared.
Talking about my approach for screening is giving equal weightage to all the tasks (OIR, Writing story, Narration, Discussion). OIR and Narration can be improved with practice. Writing a story will automatically improve if you are a progressive person and have the right approach towards life. And about the discussion, I have a few words of advice: –
- Keep nodding and listen to the story of others to contribute well in the GD.
- Discussion can only occur if there is someone who is listening. Be the listener when everyone in the group wants to be a speaker. And this also doesn’t mean you will keep listening all the time. The point here is to be a productive person in the group.
- Smile, I think smiling and enjoying the task is very important.
After this, I want to tell you about my 3rd attempt where I got Conference Out for TGC-131 from the same board which recommended me 4 years back. Painful right!!!
Not actually because that made me introspect and I am a better person than what I was in March. So, in my 3rd attempt, I realized that I do not have the right approach in many of the things. I started working on it in this Lockdown. I did not like reading the newspaper so I started reading it very religiously. I was spending 3h of time with the newspaper. To be frank I did not like it initially but slowly Newspaper became interesting for me. Then I realized that I have degraded my English-speaking skills. So, I started loud reading in English for 30 min and also started talking with my friends in English. I also Explored 10 self-help books and novels (The Secret, Power of Subconscious mind, The Alchemist, …. etc). Maintained my fitness (It was a different challenge because of lockdown). I also started listening to a different motivational podcast and also explored Meditation. And here I want to request everyone to try Meditation and Visualisation because it helps. I also learned to cook and started helping out mom more in household chores. Doing this for 6 to 7 months in routine imbibed good values and knowledge into me.
Coming back to this experience
Psychological Test: –
For the Psych test, I planned to give very natural responses. Not getting recommended makes us overthink about Psych test and we write different theme stories on the same picture. Which corrupts our mind. And whenever in the future we will be writing a story it will harm us because we will enforce themes upon the picture shown. Also, the story won’t be as natural because our main focus is more on a theme rather than a picture. So, I did not practice for Psychology. I knew the approach and I followed it. And this is my approach to Psychology:
- Try to reflect a picture into your life to write a natural story. And if the picture is not relatable that is where your knowledge, experience, and imagination will come into play.
- Don’t fall into the Hero trap. Instead, write a story on the Central character. Your story should revolve around the central character but not only around the central character.
- Utilize the resources around you. And there is no better resource than Human resources (Parents, Friends, Teachers…. etc).
- Write Action and Solution-oriented story.
- Improve your written Communication (Grammar, Sentence formation, Punctuations…. etc).
I followed the same approach. Wrote all the stories including 12th on the spot. My writing speed helped me to complete all the stories well in time.
- In this test also relate words to yourself and you will naturally write observational sentences.
- Don’t write low-level fact sentences. Instead, write High-level fact sentences.
- Avoid using should, must kind of words because it feels like we are preaching someone.
- Don’t write sentences for HE, SHE, THEY, RAM, RADHA…. etc.
- Don’t avoid negative words by writing sentences on Antonyms. Instead, face that word and write its consequences.
Ex: – Kill: Meditation kills anxiety. Dishonest: Dishonesty gets people into trouble
(Please don’t corrupt your mind with these sentences.)
- And by chance, if you have written a negative sentence. Don’t worry about it because one response won’t be problematic. Because it’s a pattern that matters.
I was able to write 57 sentences out of 60.
- Analyse situations practically and also address hidden problems in the situation.
- Think like an Officer. Utilize resources like a Leader and this will help you.
- Quality matters over Quantity. But also, doesn’t fall into the Quality answer trap.
I answered 37 SRTs out of 60. My answers were briefer and to the point.
- Be honest and keep things natural.
- When you are writing weakness don’t just write it. Mention what you are doing to overcome your weakness.
- Taking the honest opinion of Parents, Friends, Teachers, Colleagues, Boss will help you to prepare better SD.
I took the help of my Parents, Friends, Teachers to know my strengths and weaknesses. I introspected to know myself. And wrote my SD naturally based on the inputs I got from them.
Personal Interview: –
In PI I think IO is more interested in knowing you as a person. Interview time, some technical questions, current affairs questions, calculative questions may vary from board to board, and person to person. But what remains constant is the process of finding your personality. And when we know that most of our interviews will be from PIQ then why not focus on it. Being honest and able to justify some of the mistakes we made will help a lot. Have a smile on your face and be patient even when you are being pressurized. Since the interview is conducted in English having good English communication will be advantageous. Be attentive during the series of questions asked. And if you don’t know the answer to any question be confident and tell “Sir, I will find it out and tell you in the conference”.
I was very much honest in my PI. I accepted my weaknesses and told him how I am working on it. There were many questions related to me, my family, and my friend circle. I was able to connect everything in my interview with my routine. My approach to answering experiences in detail helped me to generate trust in IO. After listening to initial experiences in detail he started stopping me in between to move on to the next question. And I think Smile, Honesty, and Confidence helped me to face Interviews.
Since these tasks are Group tasks it is very important to enjoy these tasks.
GD, GPE: –
- In GD, GPE it is very important to remain calm. Give points logically. Include personal opinions with facts and figures.
My group did face communication issues in GD. But we were able to eradicate it in GPE. There was a ruckus in GD but I managed to stay calm, balanced my tone, and was able to give good logical points including my personal opinion. In GPE I was able to write my solution in time. Though it was not the best solution but we as a group discussed it nicely to come up with a better group solution.
PGT, HGT, FGT, CT: –
- Try to be a team player
- Being calm will again help a lot.
- If you are not getting a solution then help out people who are giving a solution.
- If you don’t get any helping material in your hand then holding the drum(load) also helps. Even if you don’t have helping material, show your interest in solving a problem and suggest good solutions.
- If you know the technique of tying rope then you are at advantage.
In my PGT, HGT, and FGT as soon as the task started, I found others rushing towards the helping material. Instead of fighting for helping material I focused on left behind load. Since I did not had the helping material I was one of the last ones to cross the initial obstacle but that does not stop me from suggesting better solutions. Though this was the case initially my group was very good when it came to switching the positions. Everyone switched their positions whenever asked and did not had solutions.
In CT I was called by 2 people. My Command task was a bit complicated but I was able to get a solution in time. My GTO changed the colour of the platform I was standing on but still, I was able to give an acceptable solution.
- Reading newspapers and books helps in the preparation of a lecturette.
- Speaking in front of the mirror helps in improving confidence and body language.
- It is how you speak, how you present your points that matter. Not your topic.
(I spoke on Live in Relationship and Global Warming in my recommendation attempt respectively)
I spoke on Global Warming this time. And instead of just speaking about the problem we are facing because of Global Warming I focused more on giving day to day solutions we can accept to reduce pollution and global warming. I made eye contact with everyone in my group and was standing upright in the Vishram position.
IO, GOR: –
- Having good physical fitness is advantageous.
- Roar like Lion whenever you get a chance to shout (Name of an actress on Commando walk, Tarzan sound on Tarzan swing, Warcry in GOR).
- Help your teammates in GOR. Take up the responsibility of penalty if given in GOR. Remind everyone about the rules.
In IO I was able to do 13 obstacles. I planned it in such a way that I was able to repeat 6, 10, and 8 in series. Making a total score of 79 in IO. I made significant shouting in Tarzan Swing and on Commando walk. Then in GOR, we were running last, so we were not given any penalty. I was helping my subordinates in different tasks. I was instrumental in shouting warcry. And also ensured that I keep my group members reminding rules.
On 8 Sep 2020, I had my conference. I was very much sure of the performance I gave in this attempt.
I was made to wait 5 minutes before I was called in. My conference inside the hall also lasted for 5 min. I was asked some of the common questions and I answered them very cheerfully and confidently.
After 30 minutes of the conference, our results were announced. 2 of us got recommended. My Chest No was announced first. So, I had to stand up and say my name and roll no. But in that feeling of joy, I repeated my name twice and realized it when I was saying it for the second time. The Officer gave a smile and allowed me to have my new plus chest no.
- We all know that SSB is a subset of Life. And if you are doing well in your life you will do well in your SSB. The SSB is designed in such a way that a person with the right approach can clear it in the first attempt even if he/she doesn’t know about it. So, don’t corrupt your mind by any sort of coaching.
- Go to SSB as if you are going for a vacation. Why vacation?
Because we enjoy our task in Vacation and it is very important to enjoy our tasks in SSB to bring out our best.
3. You will only get recommended when you are ready to get recommended. I very much believe that it is a candidate who recommends himself/herself. The accessor just judges them and rates them based on the quality they exhibit during tasks.
- Go to SSB with an approach to give your best not to get recommended.
1st attempt- I already knew I was medically unfit for NDA so I went to give my best and I got recommended.
2nd attempt- I went to get recommended and got screened out.
3rd attempt- I went to get recommended and got a conference out.
4th attempt- This time I went to give my best and got recommended.
Thank you so much everyone for giving your valuable time. I want to thank MAULIK (5033) for always being there. I trust my experience will help you all.
ANY PAIN, ANY AGONY, I SHALL NEVER CRY
SOLDIER I WAS BORN, SOLDIER I SHALL DIE.