Have you ever taken a personality test? Tried to find out about yourself?

There are many pieces of research and theories on human traits which makes up our personalities. One of those researches was done by Katharine Cook Briggs and her daughter Isabel Briggs Myers and thus the name MBTI Personality Test, which became the most widely used personality test. Today majority of personality tests are a derivation of MBTI Test.

Using Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, 16 types of personalities have been identified by the researchers in which individuals can be classified and every type is made up of either of the following traits Intuition/Sensing, Introversion/Extraversion, Feeling/Thinking, and Perception/Judging. So your personality will be determined by the 4 traits which are dominant in you from the 8 traits above and you may be INFJ or ESTJ or INTJ etc.

These 16 possible combinations are then uniquely identified as 16 personality types and each type has its own weaknesses, strengths, behavioral tendencies, talents, and possible behavioral patterns. This article doesn’t intend to explain the theory in detail rather it is for emphasizing an important point so badly ignored and never talked about with the students.

I wanted to be an Army Officer. It was my passion. I applied for PMA Long Course in 2007, and eventually got a call to appear at ISSB Gujranwala for the tests. I stayed at ISSB Gujranwala for 4 days undergoing different tests.

I couldn’t perform well in some tests. Anyhow, I came back and waited for the letter and when the letter came it read as “Not Recommended”. You must note that the candidate who is not selected is termed as “Not Recommended” by the ISSB not “Failed”

I was shell shocked! It was the single thing about which I had been so passionate, it was my single most goal and I was focused but then WHY? I would often ask back then. I accepted it as my fate but the curiosity in me made me study and find out the real reason why I was “Not Recommended” for the Army. It was then that I took a personality test, understood myself better and realized it was actually best for me.

One thing to remember is that there is no such concept as “Nalayak” in today’s world. The individual you may label as “Nalayak” is actually a misfit in that specific thing but maybe the best fit in some other thing in which you might struggle. All the 16 personality types are unique having its own strengths and weaknesses and one type cannot be termed as better or superior to the other.

That is why the word “Failed” is never used by the ISSB for the candidate, rather term “Not Recommended” is used meaning the candidate may be suited to another career due to his personality traits and is not recommended for a military career and environment which demands certain aptitude and skills from the candidate which only certain personality types may possess. That not so bright guy from your neighborhood who got into the Army may not be due to some General or Colonel making a call rather because he may have the personality traits and skills needed to succeed in a military environment. Similar is the rule for any other career and field you may want to pursue in your life. Certain careers are suited to certain types and certain to the others.

“Mujhe Accounting bilkul nahi pasand” these were not words of a student deciding to choose CA as a profession rather of a trainee student who was halfway through the program and stuck at the final level. I was surprised and thought that a student pursuing Chartered Accountant certification doesn’t like Accounting?? How strange it was, then why are you doing it? I kept asking in my mind.

This is a fundamental problem associated with the students and the education system in our country. There is no guidance, no career counseling to guide students according to their aptitudes and tendencies. The result is most of us are in profession doing something because it’s our duty rather than because we love it. And why would we love it if it doesn’t resonate with our natural traits and inborn talents?

That is the main reason that some breeze through this qualification while others struggle for years because there is no process to filter out the students at the start. All other reasons like not working hard, no motivation and no commitment stem from this. There are ECAT and MCAT or similar entry tests to filter out students for the engineering and medical degree program but nothing to stop someone to pursue one of the toughest professional certification programs in the country if he hasn’t got aptitude for it. All those who are unable to get admission in engineering and medical degree programs enter CA program as the last option, “Kuch to karna he”

Rahul Dravid was a commerce student and thought of doing CA but he might have been lost like many if he hadn’t pursued the thing which he liked and had traits to succeed in it and became one of the greats of the game. Similarly, a student winning gold medals and merit certificates in the CA program might have been lost if he had been made to do anything other than CA. The principle is same in every field in every case.

There is a need that first parents and then teachers and educational Institutions take up the responsibility to first identify then counsel and guide the students according to their talents and abilities. These students are future professionals and a content and happy professional doing what he has a talent for may do wonders while a misfit may only stroll through each day thinking it as some kind of hell which he has to bear.

Students who are doing CA and are struggling, assess yourself or seek help and guidance, have the courage to leave the CA program if it doesn’t click to you, doesn’t interests you. Don’t waste your time, energy and money in it. There is no shame in accepting that you don’t belong to it, you may have a talent for any other field in which others might struggle. Don’t think “log kia kahien gay” think how you want to go on with your life.

As Steve Jobs said “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work! And the only way to do great work is to love what you do! If you haven’t found it yet keep looking and don’t settle, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition they somehow already know what you truly want to become”

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