In doubt? Self Assess.

- By Kashish Uppal

“Sometimes you don't realize your own strengths until you come face to face with your greatest weakness.”

- Susan Gale

If you have ever been interviewed for something, You must have faced the question-” What are your strengths & weaknesses?” The answer to this question can often decide the outcome of your interview but it is you who decides the outcome of your life. It is about knowing your true self and the potential you hold. Answers like- ‘Oh my weakness is that I work too hard’ show a lack of thought we as students put into this question, but honest answers like ‘ I acknowledge that I struggle to achieve a good work-life balance but I am working on it’ show that the candidate has reflected about it and is working on his/her weakness. 

Let us consider the following story, Ankita had been receiving the best student award consecutively for the past two years and then suddenly she thought she had a competition in her peer Naved. She kept looking at her friends for telling her that she was better, but then one day for a competition her favourite teacher preferred Naved. She was devastated and asked her teacher if she was undeserving? The teacher replied in an emphatic No but at the same time she informed that Naved was a better choice for the competition. Ankita felt very disappointed and despite Naved’s constant approach for her inputs, she shunned him.  This is where the flaw really lies. Ankita responded to the fact that Naved was enjoying the same privilege as her and not to the fact that the teacher considered her deserving as well. We live in a society where everyone has a role to play. Comparing each other would defeat the purpose of growth. Just because someone is better than us doesn’t mean we are not good enough, we only need to compare ourselves to the person we were yesterday. 

The need of the hour is to introspect and respect instead of struggling with social comparison. The true essence of which can be captured by the quote - “a flower doesn’t compete with the next it just blooms.” While comparisons always come from outside, growth comes from within by introspecting what we are good at and what needs more work. Once we introspect we also must respect that we are unique and there exist differences between us and the others which is normal. We must also respect that growth takes time and while no one is perfect we are working towards a better self. 

A good way to do this is by reflecting upon our strengths and weaknesses using a SWOT analysis. SWOT stands for Strengths-Weaknesses- Opportunities & Threats. It is a widely accepted and popular way to understand, analyse, and improve. This technique helps us analyse internal strengths and weaknesses as well as external threats and opportunities. It requires honesty, careful thinking and strong will to make a SWOT Diagram. It involves creating a 2 X 2 grid with labels as Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats and listing them while answering the questions listed in the image below.

Another scientifically proven mental strategy for goal setting whether personal or professional is the WOOP method. It can help in setting goals and prepare a plan to achieve them. WOOP stands for Wish, Outcome, Obstacle and Plan. This method has been developed by Dr Gabriele Oettingen and Dr Peter Gollwitzer.WOOP helps us set our wish/ targets which can be long term, short term or may  be immediate and then it draws on our imagery and makes us imagine the best outcome that would result when the target/ wish is accomplished. Then it demands introspection, it demands to write down Obstacles that can stop us from achieving our wish/target followed by a plan to overcome the obstacles identified in the step before. 

Persistent and consistent will to value oneself is the key to introspection. As Anuj Somany puts it ever so beautifully, “Most people need Introspection than Inspiration for the right motivation towards the creation of true path of peace and progress".  Let us all introspect and respect the person we are and work constructively to ensure we become the best version of ourselves. 

Learning never stops and neither should you! So don't hesitate to write to us and share your experiences with us at 


About the Author

Kashish Uppal is an applied psychology student from the University of Delhi. She believes that to truly understand the world, one must understand oneself. She is an avid reader, skill trainer and food enthusiast. Her life mantra is to live life mindfully and with gratitude because life is not waiting forever for the storm to pass, it is learning to dance in the rain