Dr. Vinod K Gupta, Industrial Psychologist
* People are shattered under stress but some people after undergoing through stress become stronger, more powerful and more confident. It is due to their resilience.
* Resilience is an ability which can be developed by keeping the joints of the bones in regular movement and the muscles of all the limbs elastic and flexible through exercising physically and mentally as well.
* We make hunches when options are available. We keep on guessing when everything is cloudy. Moreover, our success depends upon the right type of decisions which can meet future requirements. In fact, we all are born with the ability that helps in creating our future.
*Those who work to cross the hurdle of Natural Selection are the example of resilient individuals. Otherwise, those ignore this stark reality; most of them live the life of honesty, believe in hard work and use their ‘willpower’ whenever they encounter stress. Finally, they depart from this world unfulfilled.
Research studies suggest resilience is a specific ability. Some people are blessed with it. In some, it is found for some duration but scientists feel that resilience cannot be developed. Here is Dr. Vinod K. Gupta who claims resilience can be developed. Seventy years old Dr. Gupta is an Industrial Psychologist, specialized in the interpretation skills through which he had been making predictions for last 50 years. Ex-Chairman of ONGC, Dr. (Col.) SP Wahi used to appreciate him as a psychologist who uses psychology as astrology for making predictions. He mentioned regarding his expertise in his book, “Leading from the front from an army to corporate world”. Likewise, he was awarded ‘Chikitsa Mart and’, one who cures incurable diseases by Kala Kunj, a social organization, Dehradun, Uttrakhand in the year 2000.
Question: What motivated you?
Dr. Gupta – Soon after taking admission in BA in KGK College, Moradabad I was looking books in the library. There I read, “Outer space may represent the ultimate frontier, but the most critical challenge confronting us now is inner space – understanding the basic nature and behavior of human beings.” – James Coleman: Abnormal Psychology and Modern Life, the University of California at Los Angeles. These lines were so fascinating to me that the word ‘inner space’ haunted continuously in my mind. Finally, I told myself this ‘inner space’, I will explore and I began peeping inside the body.
Question: Do you have the solid base for your claim?
Dr. Gupta – I feel I will not be able to convince you unless I narrate the background. During 1973-74 I was able to either diagnose or predict heart attacks along with other diseases after studying the personality of a person. Initially, it was the matter of pride to me as for other psychologists diagnosing/making predictions through personality assessment was something like foreign language. After witnessing actual heart attacks I questioned, “What I am doing?”
I contacted doctors and narrated my problem. All looked at me as if I was a cynic. I discussed my problem with my Yoga-Guru, (late) Dr. Ramesh Chandra Kandpal, ‘Gola Pundit’. I learned yoga seriously under his guidance. Since the age 18, I have regularly been devoting 3 to 4 hours daily on my body as I believe I am effective due to the support of my body.
You know after availing medical treatment the patient is free from all the symptoms of the heart attack but the cause of heart attack still continues because doctors have treated the symptoms only. On the other hand, after re-testing personality assessment was revealing similar syndrome of the heart attack. Later an idea emerged; can I break the syndrome of the heart attack after foreseeing on the profile sheet of the person?
In the year 1988 a question I faced, “I am suggesting Chairman, ONGC regarding ‘future result producing behavior of a manager’. In case, a manager whom I did not recommend if he/she approaches and says, “I respect your wisdom but I want to develop. Can you help me?”
I was simply an interpreter of the data from the futuristic point of view. With the passage of time, the magnitude and the intensity of the question rose to the extent that I could not ignore. It was my question and I was to explore the answer. I decided to monitor the data. That is, data of executives and employees were with me. Whenever I came to know something noticeable regarding the person and his/her family I used to consult the data. Could data reveal this information? If yes, then why did I not reveal? If no, then again why?
Question: What was the outcome?
Dr. Gupta – Data gave this information but it was my limitation. For example, I collected data from Class one officer to General Manager during 1981 to 1989. Some retired as Additional Director, some as Director, some as Vice-President, some as acting Chairman and Mr. SK Manglik became Chairman, ONGC. To our utter surprise when I processed the data through factor analysis with the help of Shri Diwakar who retired as General Manager; those retired as the additional director they were in the group of Additional Directors. Only Shri Manglik was in the block of Col. Wahi.
Even Mr. LL Bhandari who retired as Acting Chairman and Shri PK Chandra who retired as Vice President, they were in the bearing block. After seeing the presentation Shri Jauhari Lal, Director (HR) became interested in his own-self. Unfortunately, he did not fall into the group of Chairman. I wished to present my research in Science Congress but I was not allowed by ONGC.
Question: Then what happened?
Dr. Gupta – I realized avoiding the heart attack and getting support from ‘Nature’ are linked. In both the cases, one has to give his best on the job, he/she has to prepare to cross the hurdle of Natural Selection and he/she has to learn to convert the house into the home. Finally, he must realize the power of ‘love’ without which ‘will to live’ is not possible. It is ‘will to live’ that allows a person to enjoy frustrations and failures in the process of creating ‘future’. Otherwise, he/she always is after success and will harm social harmony at the cost of personal success.
Question: OK but I am asking for your claim.
Dr. Gupta – At the fag-end of my service in ONGC I got the opportunity. Dr. AK Balyan, Director (HR) was appreciative of my counseling capabilities he provided me the opportunity but my immediate bosses did not encourage. In most of the cases, seniors feel they are sidelined by posting as training head. Or it is a punishment posting. As a result, I was to pay rupees ninety thousand from my pocket to make my experiment successful.
I was given eight participants. One was Chief Engineer (Drilling) suffering from hypertension. One was Superintending Engineer (Drilling) he had the attack of paralysis in 2000 and was unable to walk. One was Superintending Engineer (Drilling) he was a chronic patient of high blood sugar and low hemoglobin level. The first day when he joined training Dr. Vinay Kumar informed that he might have a problem in a night as he had not brought medicine. Since I knew him therefore throughout the whole night I could not sleep with the apprehension if something happened to him my program will be washed out. One was Superintending Engineer (Mechanical) who had a heart attack. His inferior walls of the heart were 40% damaged during the attack in 2002. One was Superintending Engineer (Electrical) he was suffering from chronic diabetes. He initially took my training as a picnic. One was Lab Technician who was overqualified for the job and was suffering from a liver problem. One was Technical Assistant (Operation Theatre) he was suffering from tachycardia and anxiety. He was on the verge of retirement. The eighth person was a Rigman working in offshore. He was junior most who needed to develop his confidence level as he was suffering stage phobia.
The hypothesis was with proper desiring and supportive efforts of ‘do-it-yourself’ exercises one can manage any disease/sickness with dignity. I did not have any control over the participants. Those were the smokers they continued smoking. Those were alcoholics they continued drinking. But all were very respectful. I know how to command respect?
In the first phase, I studied their personality in detail and counseled them accordingly. For example, the person who had a paralytic attack and was unable to walk; I told him you will not be cured. Why – asked him? Because you are very eager to walk – my reply was. What should I do – asked he? I told to listen carefully what I say in the classroom and do the ‘do-it-yourself’ exercises which I suggest. He was the only person who absorbed all the training inputs. In the third month, in fact, the third phase of training, Shri Mukadam not only walked independently but swum and danced.
Through personality assessment, I am able to see the level of ‘desire for the cure’ and its outcome in future. Based on this information I customize training inputs and the ‘do-it-yourself’ exercises respectively.
Question: How is it related to resilience?
Dr. Gupta – Uninvited stress shatters us. If we invite stress as we do in case of adventure, we not only develop confidence but will get the opportunity to feel our potential and explore the meaning of our being. For example, in case of Rao who had 398 blood sugar levels whose hemoglobin level was 10.9 and 1% sugar was present in his urine. He was not only able to decrease blood sugar to the extent of 113; he could improve kidney functions and develop the level of hemoglobin from 10.9 to 13.0 also. Likewise, Shri Shelke who had a heart attack and damaged muscles of the heart survived for another five years, I don’t have the latest information i.e. after 10 years, whereas his personality results were full of the syndrome (+.50) for another heart attack immediately. He was a smoker also. In fact, I was able to break the syndrome which I initially thought of in the year 1975 and onward.
Question: It means your claims are limited to your training only?
Dr. Gupta – One of my senior told my son has got admission in Aberdeen University, UK. I wish you develop him to the extent that he should not return blank-handed. I began calling him. Unfortunately, one month prior to his departure he developed viral fever and admitted to Hinduja Hospital, Mumbai. There his platelets count was reduced to 25000. Since he was in the hospital, he survived but doctors warned threat to life. He consulted me I told on the basis of his personality structure to go there fearlessly and follow what I suggested.
Now after 10 years he is a permanent resident of Scotland, UK and is a ‘Financial Analyst’ with some multinational company in Edinburg. But I tell you I am a very bad mentor. I not only lend my resources but screw the person to the extent that he/she can realize the picture of inner-self in the mirror of my evaluation.
One of my students is preparing to go to Germany. She informed I will be visiting you because whatever I am today is because of your guidance. She used to have attacks of rheumatic arthritis and had to leave her job. I studied her personality and gave feedback. We had various counseling sessions but nothing positive emerged. One day I showed the mirror of her inner hostility that was causing attacks of stiffness but in a very crude manner. She wept and wept bitterly. I thought she would not return. Later she informed her arthritis attacks had stopped. She got a job in a school that deals with specialized (autistic) children. The parents of these children feel ‘she is the best teacher’ in whose contact children feel comfortable and converse like normal children. She has completed her MA in Psychology from IGNU and has been awarded teaching certificate for teaching such students world over.
Question: What for scientists feel resilience cannot be developed?
Dr. Gupta – Whatever we are studying it is western course material. In our times we were getting second handed information. I realized I cannot create anything new while I was working in Mental Hospital in 1972-73, hence started looking for some other avenues.
I don’t believe in planning but my life is very well planned. Sometimes I feel I am getting credits otherwise everything is planned. For example, after termination of ‘project on dacoits of Chambal Valley’ due to stoppage of PL-480 grant I joined Psycho-Centre, distributor of IPAT tests in South East Asia. There I was introduced to the ‘16 PF’ Questionnaire by R.B. Cattell. I completely devoted to Cattell and attempted to know how these factors relate to Indian Environment and culture. I devoted like Eklavya of Mahabharata and hence realized my ‘being’. Before interpreting I used to visualize Prof. Cattell’s image.
Western scientists are good in scientific analysis. They go very minutely and are very rigorous in approach. But life is not only analysis. It is more than that. Religion nullifies you through the grammar of Atma- Parmatma. Science condemns you by assigning some number like Aadhar number. You ‘being an existence’ will be nowhere if you don’t explore your ‘uniqueness’ and purpose of your ‘existence’.
Such exploration is not possible unless you connect with your inner universe. That is, feeling the movements of joints of the bones, muscles of all the limbs and enjoying the processes going on beneath the skin. In other words, working to feel your ‘being’ through these activities is in fact, an example of developing resilience.
Question: How psychology relates to resilience?
Dr. Gupta – Till psychology was under the influence of philosophy, it was discarded by scientists. It was Sigmund Freud who introduced psychology to the scientific world. Now it is an only psychology that helps you enjoying maximum freedom by contributing your ‘best’ on the job which ultimately adds to social-good. In fact, psychology is the science of individual differences and exploring the inner universe.
Question: What is your motivation?
Dr. Gupta – Why old age is a curse? Why is it not a matter of pride? If we take our body a representative of God and serve it as very religious people serve in temples, gurudwaras, mosques or churches, then the body will help us to live life gloriously. The language of the body is a pain. I attempt to converse with pain as any mother converses with her newborn baby. I respect doctors or therapists but don’t depend on them because my most of the sickness has been either due to wrong medicine or inability of the doctor. I suffered breathing problem due to wrong medicine for hypertension. It was Stamelo Beta which I consumed for more than 5 to 6 years.
Secondly, health, relationship and career are the areas where we learn through trial and error. Since there is no other way than this, therefore, learning the skill of forgiveness is essential. Hence, my sole motivation is to forgive myself for my mistakes, forgive others for their excesses and seeking forgiveness from those who suffered due to my foolishness.
Question: What is most essential for resilience?
Dr. Gupta – Acuteness of disease cannot be handled without the support of medical science. Once it is managed try to explore what in fact, is troubling you. Likewise, the practice of de-charging the negativity prepares to connect with the inner-self. Once we are able to connect with our inner-self, experiences of 350 million years are at our disposal. We get insight, provided we are able to learn. Caring becomes curing. Reiki and acupuncture are the examples of caring.
Question: Who are the people who will be benefitted?
Dr. Gupta – Who is tired of doctors and wants to live life with dignity, he/she may be at any stage of sickness that is immaterial but he/she must be ready to take initiative and learn the new skills. I assure them either they will live life with dignity or their passing away will be well dignified. This is true in case of old people. With regard to adolescents and youth, they will not only be creating “wealth” but creating jobs for others and will live the life of economic freedom.
These youth will protect the planet earth from the harms created by those who do it either out of ignorance or for demonstrating their superiority over others. The common man is controlled by reptile mentality; criminals, white collared criminals, administrators, industrialists and the terrorists are the people who harm the planet earth. If resilience becomes a part of value system, such people will be motivated to follow the track that leads to the movement of protecting the planet earth from the damages and recovery of all constituents damaged so far.