Champions’ test: How Gautam Gambhir, Sunil Chettri dealt with CBSE exam stress
Successful people from different walk of life say CBSE class 12 results are not the end of life. Most believe that the results have little bearing on your life over the years.Updated: May 29, 2017 22:22 IST
The CBSE results usher a stressful phase for students and their parents. Who scored how much is the staple dinner table discussion. If you have 95% or above, you are good; 90% or more, you can still save face. But in times when exam toppers score an almost perfect 100, anything less does not seem acceptable.
In the middle of all the madness, one tends to forget that there is more to life than just what you scored in your 12th grade. “We need to understand that the 12th boards is an ‘achievement’ test. Not an aptitude test. It is not an indicator of creativity or mental agility,” said Janaki Rajan, a professor in education at the Jamia Millia Islamia.
Karuna Nandy, successful lawyer, echoed this. “CBSE measured memory. You were penalised for intelligence in many subjects, in my time. I did fine then, but have done very badly in some other important exams. Life rewards grit and persistence, finding one of the many paths to success if one closes off. You just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and start again,” she said when asked about her own time as a student.
Reiterating that your 12th grade score is nothing but a number, Rajan added that “In fact the real heroes are the ones who score 60-70%. They usually end up doing great things for themselves, and build interesting careers.”
Sunil Chettri, the striker of the Indian football team, is one such example. After scoring some 70-odd per cent in his 12th grade, he went on to become a part of the Indian national football team. “I feel bad when I hear about pressure. You need to learn to take things in your stride. Even in football matches, you win some, you lose some. As long as you have given your best, it should not matter how much you scored,” he said.
Gautam Gambhir, of the Indian cricket team also recollects how he had scored a first division (60-70%) in his 12th exams. “(I) was pretty happy with that as I barely got time to study since I was playing active domestic cricket for Delhi at the time,” he told HT.
Stress plagued these people too. “During my times the professional options were limited. You could either be an MBA, doctor, engineer, chartered accountant, company secretary etc. therefore we knew the future lied only in academics. These days the stress is about competition as everyone seems to be scholarly. But I’d advise my young friends to take it easy as just being yourself will go a long way in shaping your careers,” said Gambhir.
Kailash Kher, is another source of inspiration for many. “Struggles make you a strong person. They are necessary for your growth. They let you realise your positive and negative sides and teach you to strike a balance between them. In search of my true calling, early on in my life (when he was just 14 ), I left my house,” wrote Kher in an open letter published in HT City, where he urged young people to look beyond their 12th grade scores.
In fact parents can play a very important role in this. Most people HT spoke to, fondly remember how their parents understood and supported them through their school years.
“I was lucky. My parents never pushed me into the ‘race.’ They were more concerned about whether I was a good human being, rather than how much I scored,” said Chettri.