Mental strength training is just as hard as or harder than physical training and that’s what they do at the academy ¬— breaks your individuality. Mental strength takes a long time to develop for a candidate who is preparing for the SSB. The SSB aspirants should start practising it well before your SSB. It is the daily practice of pushing yourself to grow stronger, maintaining realistic psychology, and adapting to the real-life situations that can find the correlation and exact context with respect to the SSB. It should be inculcated in your routine to face everyday challenges.
Let’s find out if you fall on the spectrum.
YOU BALANCE EMOTIONS WITH LOGIC
Mentally strong candidates understand how their emotions can influence their thinking in SSB or in life. In an effort to make the best decisions possible, they balance their emotions with logic. You don’t call subordinates whom you like in Command task but those who are actually relevant to the task.
YOU CHOOSE PRODUCTIVE BEHAVIOR
While it may be tempting to just make noise and not implement ideas in PGT, complain about other candidates in your group, and avoid difficult obstacles by breaking rules, mentally strong candidates refuse to act as such because they know that this is an unproductive behaviour that sabotages the group dynamics as well as personality assessment.
YOU FEEL CONFIDENT IN YOUR ABILITY TO ADAPT TO CHANGE
Mentally strong candidates know that although change is uncomfortable and any destructive or dominating behaviour candidate can ruin it all, it’s tolerable. They focus their behaviour on adapting to tackle them in a polite manner, rather than resisting it or leaving it for other group members.
YOU FACE THE FEARS THAT HOLD YOU BACK
While mentally strong candidates don’t need to conquer fears because they have something to prove to others, they do strive to face the fears that hold them back. I knew that I fear screen jump as tangling my leg and falling on my face will lead me to feel like a defeat but I chased that obstacle in my next SSB attempt as I had to.
YOU BALANCE SELF-ACCEPTANCE WITH SELF-IMPROVEMENT
Mentally strong candidates accept themselves for who they are, while simultaneously recognizing their need for personal development. They don’t rely on recommended candidates’ responses and copy them instead they learn their technique and improvise it according to their own profile by self-awareness.
YOU GENUINELY CELEBRATE OTHER PEOPLE’S SUCCESS
Mentally strong candidate cooperate — rather than compete — with other candidates. They don’t feel as though other candidates’ success somehow diminishes their own achievements. Even if they are conference out, they know their mistakes and accept that the recommended candidates performed better rather than blaming the SSB Board.
YOU ARE COMFORTABLE LIVING ACCORDING TO YOUR VALUES
Mentally strong candidates make decisions with relative ease because they understand their priorities and they live according to their values. They don’t bend down in front of IO just to create a good impression. They are flexible yet firm in their belief system and don’t practice rigidity. They aren’t a YES MAN.
YOU FOCUS ON SHARPENING YOUR SKILLS, RATHER THAN SHOWING THEM OFF
While some candidates seek validation from others by showing off some specific GTO skills, mentally strong candidates are less concerned about gaining recognition. Instead, they’re intrinsically motivated to implement and execute their ideas in the GTO.
YOU LIVE AN AUTHENTIC LIFE
Mentally strong candidates are true to themselves. Their words are in line with their behaviour and their responses in Interview, Psychology and GTO responses are aligned because they project their true personality. They are honest but they know when to conceal information.
YOU VIEW LIFE’S HARDSHIPS AS OPPORTUNITIES FOR GROWTH
While hardship causes some candidates to grow bitter, mentally strong candidates let adversity make them better. They don’t blame the SSB Board or assessors or other candidates for their result but they see their attempt as a learning experience and come back again with better-improvised preparation.
YOUR SELF-WORTH DEPENDS ON WHO YOU ARE, NOT WHAT YOU ACHIEVE
Mentally strong candidates aren’t desperate for the “recommendation” rather they prepare themselves for it by personality development. They don’t go to the SSB Centre with beggar mindset of “hoping” to get the recommendation but with the deserving mind-set that they are tailor-made for this job. The failure acts as a fuel for their next SSB attempt.
YOU PRACTICE DELAYED GRATIFICATION
Mentally strong candidate view their goals as a marathon, not a sprint. They know that SSB isn’t just a 5-day process but a long journey of continuous inculcation of personality development techniques. They don’t start the SSB preparation when they clear the exam or when they get the call letter but the very moment they think about joining the Armed forces.
YOU ACCEPT PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR YOUR CHOICES
Mentally strong candidates accept complete responsibility for their decisions in their lives and own them. They don’t complain and blame situations, people and world but rather feel responsible to gear up and act like an officer.
YOU EXPRESS GRATITUDE
Rather than exclaim they need more, mentally strong people acknowledge they have more than they need. They keep “Abundance Mentality” and don’t seek supplementary resources to achieve their goal. This helps them in Command Task when GTO removes their men, material and resources and still challenges them to clear the obstacle.
YOU FOCUS ON WHAT YOU CAN CONTROL
Mentally strong candidates are effective and productive in SSB because they devote their resources to the things they can control. They don’t think about trivial mistakes that they did in previous tasks but rather focus on the tasks in hand.
YOU ENGAGE IN ACTIVE PROBLEM-SOLVING
The mentally strong candidates doesn’t dwell on the problem — instead, they create solutions. They shout less and act more in GTO while extending help to fellow candidates whenever in need.
YOU’RE OPEN TO LEARNING MORE FROM OTHER CANDIDATES
Mentally strong candidates are constantly learning from the performance of the other candidates. They don’t repeat the same mistakes and treat them as building blocks of self-awareness and their own improved performance.
YOU WORK ON YOUR WEAKNESSES, RATHER THAN MASKING THEM
While many candidates work hard to disguise their vulnerabilities, mentally strong candidates invest their energy into improving their shortcomings. They don’t hide or excuse their mistakes in the Interview. Instead, they learn from them and tell the “Old Man” that what exactly they have done or doing to overcome that mistake or weakness.
Prepare with the mind-set of “Sher Taiyaar hai!!” (The lion is ready!!) – 2nd Lancers (Gardner’s horse).
This is an update of an article originally written by Steven Benna and in turn, is based on the book “13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do” written by Amy Morin. I extracted the key learnings and framed them in the context of defence aspirants and SSB.
You can prepare for defence entrance exams such as NDA, AFCAT, INET, and CDS by taking Written Online courses as they will not only give you access to full-length quality lectures but will also provide the facility to take standardized mock tests for better study and strategic growth in the exam. You can take multiple quizzes after each lesson to ensure the full understanding of the subject along with creating your customized lesson plans. You can check out the course content along with other important specifics at SSBCrackExams.
You can also access them through the SSBCrackExams app available in the google play store. Jai Hind