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Decoding Careers in Psychology

This Podcast is for all the people who aspire to be psychologists and want to create a difference in people’s life. Curiosity is an intrinsic part of human nature. Many of you have grown up asking one basic question why? And as adults, we continue to question and ponder at things.

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Psychology and psychologists tend to apply the same universal curiosity to observe and examine the relationship between our environment and our behaviour. This has motivated many people to choose a career in psychology.

Today I will try to decode a few career options rooting out of this vast subject i.e. Psychology. Be it schools, colleges, hospitals or organizations everyone needs a psychologist Today. But before that let’s clear our minds with the role of a psychologist. What do psychologists do? Tomorrow when I am a psychologist what is that I’m supposed to do? Once your vision is clear following the path becomes easy.

As Psychologists we investigate human behaviour, how people think, learn, develop emotionally and socially. Not only this they help people build their confidence and self-esteem. Your job as a practitioner is not only to help people suffering from trauma, mental disorders and substance abuse related problems but also to bring about positive change in the society and environment.

A Psychologist’s role is to connect with people, nurture relationships, and help people build a strong sense of understanding with others and their inner self. Working with individual client’s psychologists can transform lives; understand the root cause of the problem and offer treatment contributing majorly to the well being of our society. This involves the major role and responsibility towards the profession.

You can work in universities and government agencies as well. Depending on your career goals you may opt to move into a speciality area that fires your imagination and promises fulfilling work.

One can begin with a Bachelors degree in Psychology which gives you exposure to various subjects like abnormal psychology, positive psychology; youth gender identity, emotional intelligence, organizational behaviour and many more. Once u develop an interest you can gradually peruse specialization in counselling, clinical, organizational, or child psychology which will open doors in almost every discipline be it hospitals as a therapist or schools as a counsellor or in organizations as a life coach.

The choices are so vast that you can choose to be a military Psychologist consumer, aviation or Forensic Psychologist. The fields are endless. You name a disciple and there is a need for a responsible psychologist everywhere. Rightly said this profession is interesting to pursue but one has to deal with utmost responsibility towards one’s clients.

Internships are an important aspect of a Psychologist’s career building. With continuous internships programs in hospitals and Ngo’s many students have mastered the art of psychotherapy and are practising making a difference in the lives of many people. You could be one. Get introduced to the subject and discover more about the Psychology behind a Beautiful Mind.

Relevance of Soft Skills for Personality Development among Students

INTRODUCTION: Soft skill, sometimes known as “people skills” are personal attributes that enhance an individual’s interaction with others, job performance and career prospects. Unlike hard skills or technical or occupational skills, which tend to be specific to a certain type or task or activity, soft skills are broadly applicable. There are two broad classifications of soft skills viz. personal attributes and interpersonal attributes.

Soft skills broken down under personal attributes comprise of the following:

  1. Optimism
  2. Emotional Intelligence
  3. Responsibility
  4. A sense of humor
  5. Integrity
  6. Time management
  7. Motivation
  8. Creativity

Soft skills under interpersonal abilities are as follows:

  1. Empathy
  2. Leadership
  3. Communication
  4. Good manners and etiquette
  5. Sociability
  6. The ability to teach
  7. Problem solving

It is often said that hard skills will get an interview but one needs soft skills to get and keep going with the job. In the initial years of one’s career, individuals need technical abilities or occupational skills may be important to get an assignment one seeks. However, when it comes to growing in an organization, it is the personality trait that matters. And this would apply more aptly in a setting where several people with similar technical expertise will compete for a position or a promotion.

Training of soft skills in our country becomes all the more relevant where the education system does not always delve into coordinated personality development. There is a lot of contradiction and argument in the industry as to whether it is possible to enhance soft skills through different modes of training and workshops especially when we already know that the person has lived with those traits all their lives. The answer to this question seems harsh although real. A student who wants to do well in his career and does not really have a choice, a reorientation of lifestyle and personal priorities becomes essential.

The concept of soft skill is not a recent concept, instead, it is a concept discussed since ancient times. Our Vedas and Upanishads enunciate how Vedantic prescriptions cab be an effective instrument for the personal transformation that automatically enhances soft skills necessary for growth.

A desire in a young professional to create a strong positive impression about the self in intellectual and social circles is paramount. Soft skills for university students should come with the intention of an all round development of their personality and not only focus on academics but train them professionally also. Inculcation of soft skills among students would ensure greater success for them across all the spheres of life. Today’s organizations and companies look for individuals who are flexible to adapt to the organization’s culture and are apt enough to establish meaningful interactions with people around.

Relevance of soft skills among students:

  1. For creating a healthy and productive work environment: We have to develop interpersonal skills like listening and writing that can ensure the flow of smooth and accurate instructions and information. This can guarantee a cooperative work environment with minimum levels of manageable conflicts.
  2. Efficiency in dealing with challenges: Hard skills help you with technical knowledge and skill building whereas soft skills as they include communication skills, etiquette and leadership skills make your adjustment better at the workplace. They make an individual capable enough to deal with challenges and problems at the workplace.
  3. For overall personality development: All round personality development can only be guaranteed if both the hard and soft skills go hand in hand. Thus as mentioned earlier, hard skills are not enough to bring the best in you and ensure success. Pairing technical expertise with the process involved in the implementation of the technical expertise would lead to over all personality building and growth.
  4. Demand of today’s time:  In today’s time, the strength of an individual is assessed on both the hard and soft skill parameters.  The one who lacks soft skills would not be able to compete with the demands of today’s time. Thus there should be a strong focus of the course curriculum on building and strengthening of personality by inculcating soft skills.

Conclusion: All round personality development of individuals should emphasize on the mastering of soft skills. At IILM University, there is a lot of stress on developing soft skills as a part of the course structure.  There are diverse facilities initiated by the University to delve upon such skills. Some of these facilities are:

  1. IILM center for Emotional Intelligence: This is one of the centers that cater to provide an idea as to the significance of emotional intelligence in our lives. How relevant this is for ensuring the future success of individuals and how can we make ourselves happy and satisfied thus adding quality to our lives.
  2. Course curriculum: The courses offered by IILM University just do not focus on the academic growth and learning of the students. Rather it also tends to inculcate applications based learning that can be implemented and utilized when our students enter the professional world.

We offer papers like communications skills, emotional intelligence inter group relations personality growth and development that gives them an idea about the corporate setup. These courses, apart from adding on to their knowledge reservoir add on to the other aspects required for personality development example a course on communication skills makes them apt to use the power of communication during meaningful interactions. It helps them lay their point of view much more comprehensively thus ensuring them success whether it is about cracking an interview or cracking a good deal at the workplace. Similarly, the course on emotional intelligence tends to tap competencies like self-regulation, nurturing relationships etc. that helps accomplish higher order goals that one can set in life, a course on inter group relations also tends to make them understand the relevance of dynamic interactions between two or more individuals or big groups. It makes them understand the complexities of group functioning thus avoiding conflicts and ensuring teamwork while personality growth and development, make them explore, introspect and evaluate their personality strengths and virtues. It gives them an accurate understanding of themselves thus making them understand their potentialities and abilities. Thus, the emphasis on soft skills development among the student lot is the need of the hour.

References:

Govind Singh Kushwaha, Role of Soft Skill and Personality Development, Research Gate, February 2012

Barbara Cimatti, Definition, Development, Assessment of Soft Skills and their role for the Quality of Organizations and Enterprises, International Journal for Quality Research 10(1) 97–130, 2016

Barun K. Mitra, Personality Development and Soft Skills, Oxford University Press

Personality Development Video, The Economic Times and The TIMES Multimedia, 2009.

TIME magazine, Vol. 172, No. 2, 2008.

ART THERAPY- DISCOVER YOURSELF

“Mirror is a reflection of our faces and Art of our Souls”

Art has the ability to change and transform lives, in profound ways. When words fail, we turn to images and symbols to narrate our stories. Through art we can reach out to people with our stories and find a path towards transformation and healing.

As they say there is a lot between the heaven and earth than just dreams. Art therapy has a therapeutic way of rooting the idea of creative expression that fosters healing our soul and leading us towards mental well-being. For years art has been a very communicative way to express our feelings. When we were young we would instinctively use painting, drawing, sketching to communicate and express our emotions, but as we grow, and maturity hits us we often forget the beautiful impact art had on our lives.

Through Art Therapy patients are provided with a safe place where they can explore not very pleasant feelings like fear, anger, aggression, unfulfilled expectations. Feelings that they would otherwise avoid to talk about. Rightly said “Art speaks where words end.”  The field of Art and artistic people has always intrigued me. It feels like artistic people see life through a very different lens. They have immense waves of creativity within and so they life seems so sorted and calm. I wonder how various forms of art give them so much of peace. I guess the only reason why their life is so peaceful is that it’s not humans, but a form of art that is communicated as a Peacemaker and Healer adding the Art Therapy to experience the solace within.

Going back to Ancient history, art has been one of the oldest ways to communicate through wall carvings, sculptures, and paintings right from the Indus valley civilization. It is seen that when a person is unable to speak about his pain, they resort to expressing their feelings through Art.

Healing is totally an internal process which has a lot to do with a sense of positivity and inner strength. Ask an artist and they will enlighten you about the therapeutic impact Art has on them. Art Therapy is a type of expressive therapy that enhances a person’s emotional, mental, physical and spiritual well-being through the process of creativity. By art we mean everything that stirs our consciousness and inner strength to challenge our mind. This is the process where artistic expression helps lots of people to develop positive feelings, solve problems, change attitudes, boost their self-concept and be more content with themselves.

Art is like a life saving jacket in a world that’s growing crazy. Art keeps you grounded in your roots. It has a meditative impact to develop patience in life. We have to make a choice today either “let Art enter your world or you enter into the World of Art.” Choice is yours to discover the artist in you.

Remember friends Art is not a skill, but an expression and it really does not matter if you think you cannot draw or create. It’s an outlook towards life, which can be seen in the form of a new hobby, learning music, anything that keeps you occupied and for which you feel the desire to create time and it’s  so becoming a part of your life in spite of the busy schedules you have as it heals you from all the stress that you’ve been carrying  as a baggage of life.

It’s practically applicable and as a life skill trainer and therapist, I have seen my students experiencing the magic of art therapy in their lives.  A group of IILM students took this initiative to apply this therapy for the first two weeks and shared such positive results in their level of expression, understanding of situations. One common response was that they learnt to respond rather than react in stressful situations.

Art Therapy gives people medium to express their feelings and problems and tread a happier life that is real and serene in nature. Art as a therapy has proved to be a powerful weapon to combat illness and spread well-being. It allows you to be yourself with no Form and that’s the Beauty. So let’s join hands together to inhale positivity and exhale creativity.

To connect on knowing more about the profound value and benefits of art, colors and visualization therapy write to me on megha.kochhar@iilm.edu