SPJIMR GMP – Seeing Life At Garud Machi

“I never know this!! … Oh so I was wrong, I had a different image about him… I must improve my interpersonal skills, I need to open up, and I need to get more insights about myself. ….”

These were probably some of the thoughts that the students of GMP 2016 had after their stay at Garud Machi- Tamhini Ghats! Perhaps it was the location compounded with the brilliant course structure by Dr. Lata Dhir and her team that had made the PG labs for GMP 2016 an event of lifetime.

“Personality has the power to uplift, power to depress, power to curse, and power to bless” – Paul Harris. Yes, a true fact which 31 lucky members of GMP 2016 realised after being put through a series of events to bring out several personal traits. Events which seemed to be normal team building activities turned out to be eye openers for many. We were shocked when it was revealed to us that the whole 3 day program was like an exam/interview which helped us to measure our strengths and weaknesses alike. It was not an exercise, but a journey of revelations and understandings. “PG lab has given words to our thoughts and helped us connect better with our own self. The outlook and approach towards others will definitely improve if not change”, as rightfully put by one of the students of the GMP program.

Situated in a pristine and picturesque location on the Sahyadri mountain range and also at the crest of Tamhini Ghats, Garud Machi is a flagship training centre by High places, pioneers in outbound training management in India. Spread over 55 acres of the extensive ranges of the Western Ghats, Garud Machi hosts a series of indoor training programs, conferences, learning and relaxing sessions.

Like wandering atoms and particles, we arrived at Garud Machi, all excited about the wonderful treks and outbound activities that lay before us. And like energetic and excited atoms we started the course. The first day was all about breaking the “Van Der Waals” force that existed between us, the façade and masks and the labels that we have formed about each other. After 4 hrs of knowing the good’s, the bad’s and the ugly’s, for the first time the batch did actually communicate openly. Slowly the atoms grouped on to form molecules and for each different activity, different set of atoms grouped together as a team. Tasks got accomplished and the strength between members grew stronger. Few sessions were wake up calls for each and every one, some which even lead us to think differently about people around us. Some which gave us a sense of existence, fulfilment of our journey and spirituality, and as the exercises passed by, the members of GMP acted more mature, understanding life differently.

But the best of the learnings came in the last half of the lab, when Dr. Lata Dhir started revelling key characteristics of personal behaviour, and how we have been making and taking decisions without understanding its consequences. The Myers-Briggs personality types, the Johari window of oneself, the logical mind, the emotional mind and the large space between them.

Taking you through the event of the lab, we started off with understanding what it takes to cope with our environment and to adapt with the circumstances. An important point discussed was that unless someone forgives himself/herself, he/she cannot forgive others. The greatest support for any human in the worst of situations is the support and courage one receives from within. Perhaps this is the reason why we see struggling people succeeding in life. Then we were introduced to the concept of the “Super-ego”, a necessary attitude that pushes us to success. The multiple outbound sessions taught us how the climber’s attitude and the “can do” mentality help us push in that extra effort which differentiates the winners from the rest.

As we moved towards day 2, session on unravelling the mystery of mind, body and soul was brought in. Dr Debasis rightly pointed out how the biggest fear of any individual is the fear of oneself. He also went ahead to connect human as an entity to this whole ecosystem of the universe, and made us realise that as humans were mere nanoscopic entities in the wide universe and how powerless we are in this ecosystem. The key point he shared was the thought of humbleness and that of acceptance. He also emphasised that as living beings we are born to inculcate and master the virtues of Trust, Honesty and Discipline. Moving ahead with the same topic Dr. Lata brought in the topics of emotional intelligence, intuition and constructive disconnect. Seemingly heavy word but, but in reality it’s all about having your head and heart in sync while taking decisions.

Towards the end of the lab, activities and discussion were on validating one’s principles and thought process, which came out to be one of the best moments of the Lab. As the participants started realising and validating their own theory of oneself, they grew more confident, more adaptable in teams and more enthusiastic and focussed in the activities. But the learning never ended there.

Once back from the trip, now packed with series of new learning, the GMP batch put all those sciences to their day to day decisions. There was surely a change with the way we interacted with each other. Now that we have been groomed into a team of diverse entities, the participants shared more respect for each other and the barriers between them almost vanished.

As the famous quote from the Movie Mr & Mrs Smith put it “Happy endings are just stories that haven’t ended yet”, yes the Lab was a happy ending, and yes the story of each individual hasn’t finished there yet. As ambassadors of SPJIMR and India to Europe, our journeys haven’t started yet. What lies ahead of us is a series of new culture, lifestyle and endless obstacles to be solved. And with coming times and all the learning by our side, we have equipped ourselves with tools and skills to tackle and boom in the external world. A much worth trip not just for the exquisite flora and fauna, but for all the new horizons that we discovered, which would one day forge us into glorious leaders of the future.

– C.S.Abhilash, a student of GMP 2016