The Journey Of A Failed Warrior!

Disclaimer: This story is not for those who have tasted success after failures but for those who are constantly facing failures but still fighting. This is not a cliched motivational story but a story of courage, perseverance and above all self-belief.

It’s not easy to leave everything you already have, in search of something which you might or might not get. #Decision_Taken”- Posted by Satyendra on Facebook, before leaving his job at a reputed multinational company in 2016. It is said – “A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”. But maybe Satyendra was not aware of it. He decided to quit his job as he wanted to follow his passion of being a civil servant.

In no way, I am demotivating the ones who want to start civil service preparation after quitting their jobs. Obviously, Civil service is always worth a try but quitting a job for a shot at civil service is not advisable if you do not have any prior knowledge about the same. But Satyendra has already proved himself worthy by qualifying the UPSC prelims the previous year without any coaching assistance. He failed mains by a mere 32 marks (General Candidate you know). So after a lot of discussions with family and friends, he decided to leave his job and went to Delhi for his preparation. Days passed by and Satyendra worked harder and harder with each passing day. After all, he was so close to qualifying for the mains last year; so he decided to leave no stones unturned this time. By August his prelims were over and without wasting any time he started preparing for mains as he was extremely confident about getting through prelims. People say UPSC preparation is nation’s favourite pastime but it takes a lot of courage and determination to leave a job for an exam having 0.001% success rate. Moreover making notes for thousands of issues is not a child’s play. Satyendra did everything possible, starting from making notes to discussing issues with fellow aspirants. Finally, the prelims result was declared and as expected Satyendra did qualify in the prelims. But this time his joy was far less compared to the last time as he had already achieved that feat and the real test is about to come, UPSC Mains.

Meanwhile, Satyendra was also writing exams which were of similar nature to that of UPSC like SSC CGL, IB ACIO etc just to keep himself checked where he stands. I don’t know whether you should write exams or not, other than the one you are preparing for but certainly, if it doesn’t require additional effort, I believe writing other exams make no harm. Anyway, Satyendra did write those exams and cracked them as well. But as I mentioned his real test was Civil Service mains and in December 2016 he wrote the exam satisfactorily. Now it’s time to relax and what best place can there be in India than Goa to relax. So he went to Goa with his friends which proved to be a much-needed break for him. Meanwhile, he started getting close to a girl who loved him equally even after knowing that he was jobless and financially broke. After all, Satyendra spent all his savings during his stay at Delhi and he was not so financially strong.

Months passed by and finally, the day arrived for which Satyendra has sacrificed everything. He downloaded the UPSC mains result pdf and typed “Ctrl+F key” and entered his roll no. His heart started beating faster and after a moment he saw “One Match Found”. I bet, nothing can give you more happiness than the phrase “One Match Found”. Ecstatic by his achievement, he took a deep breath to sink in the moment and finally called his father to share the news who went to cloud nine after listening to his son’s achievement. Did I just mention, his then close friend who became his girlfriend soon after was also extremely happy listening to his guy’s achievement. Satyendra confidently/over confidently rejected the offer to join IB and went on to appear his interview in April 2017. I guess Satyendra committed a mistake by not joining IB as it would have secured his future even if he fails to qualify the final hurdle. But Satyendra was confident of his selection this time.

After his interview in April, Satyendra wrote various other exams like SBI PO, RBI Grade B and so on. He was so sure of his success in UPSC that he didn’t even bother to prepare for UPSC prelims 2017. He spent all his time by playing chess and talking to his girlfriend and finally the D-DAY arrived. June 3rd 2017. Satyendra repeated the same procedure he did during his mains result but this time result showed “No match Found”. He couldn’t believe his eyes and repeatedly checked the result file. But every time it showed “No match Found”. He went into a mental trauma and couldn’t decide how to break this news to his father who was equally hopeful. Tears rolled down and he started crying and screaming. But…

You know what the irony is? Even after clearing the 2nd hurdle of the most difficult exam in India, nobody cares if you don’t make it to the final list. Satyendra finally gathered the courage to break this news to his father and that day his father didn’t eat anything out of depression. The very next day his girlfriend, who just went to her hometown after finishing her graduation, visited him to console him but the pain was just unbearable. Moreover thinking about UPSC prelims 2017, which was only 15 days away, panicked him a lot. For a moment he started doubting himself but somehow gathered the much-required courage to write the prelims.

After UPSC prelims 2017, he wrote SBI PO Mains and RBI Grade B mains to keep some backup. His girlfriend constantly persuaded him to go back to IT Industry again, but every time he denied, thinking that he will make it to either SBI PO or RBI Grade B. But God had some other plans for Satyendra. Though he managed to make it till the interview round of both the exams but failed by 2 marks in SBI PO and waitlisted (Forever) in RBI grade B. Oh! I forgot to mention, Satyendra couldn’t make it to the UPSC final list by only 7 marks.  Now he started to realize the consequences of his failure but he was helpless. He just waited till UPSC prelims 2017 result but this time he couldn’t even qualify prelims.

So many questions ran through his mind. Should I go for UPSC Prelims 2018? Should I go back to IT Industry (which usually rejects a guy who has professional career gap)? But finally Satyendra arrived at a decision which was a bit clichéd but I believe that was an informed one. He decided to go for MBA considering the fact that UPSC 2017 was his 4th attempt and only 6 attempts are permissible. Another factor was his professional career gap which might cost him his entire career if he fails to make it to UPSC or any other govt. job. So Satyendra started preparing for CAT 2017 with full force.

He wrote the exam in Nov 2017 but the failed story continued. Though he managed to secure an overall 97.89 percentile which was enough to get a call from reputed b-schools, he screwed LRDI section big time with only 69.70 percentile. He couldn’t manage to get calls from any of the IIMs as well as reputed b-schools like SPJAIN, MDI and others. Now his only hope is IITs which don’t look at sectional percentiles. Again everything depends on his profile but Satyendra is confident to make it to at least one of the IITs.

I wanted to write this story because I think it is worth sharing. Sometimes things do not go as planned but self-belief and confidence can sail you through the precarious situation. Just have faith in yourself. If you have failed today, you will succeed tomorrow. Hard work never goes in vain. Do not lose hope. Keep on trying and someday you will succeed. #Be_Like_Satyendra.

Ambika Chanda

Ambika Prasad Chanda iS currently pursuing MBA (General Management) from Department of Management Studies, IIT Delhi.