Read our recent interview with a young and passionate Career Counsellor – Nikita Kukkar. Her zeal to be a learner for life and excel at each step is commendable! Her dynamic personality with a positive spirit in life is what keeps her going!
Tell us about your journey, please.
After completing my degree Masters in Psychology, I began working as an intern at a hospital in Mohali. My fascination with clinical disorders directed me to observethe work of counselling psychologists and psychiatrists. After a few days, I realised that clinical psychology might not be my calling. I realized that there is a difference between the practical and theoretical sides of the subject. I began to analyse myself and considered switching toother specializations which would not disturb my mental health. And hence I achieved it!!
I am now working passionately as a Career Counsellor and Psychologist. I have assisted students and parents in resolving their most challenging career and life problems. In 2017, I began my professional career. And so far, I have gained a lot of experience working with education startups.
After working for two years, I realised my potential and interest. I decided to advance my education by going back to school. A professional one-year Diploma from NCERT and a Diploma in Child Guidance and Family Counseling from Panjab University helped me gain diverse skills. I was thrilled with my journey of learning so far! Aside from that, I’ve also taken several numerous certificate courses in career counselling. I’ve always believed that everyone deserves joy and contentment in life, and that they can achieve anything with the correct mindset and confidence, no matter where they are at in their life journey.
What does your present profile look like?
I work as a Career Counsellor and a Psychologist. I have counselled, mentored, navigated, and guided more than 1500+ students throughout their journeys during their undergraduate and postgraduate programs. I have successfully delivered more than thirty seminars for schools and groups. My expertise lies in course/career selection, psychometric tests, adolescent counselling, and profile building.
Has the pandemic impacted your work profile in any manner? Positive or negative.
Covid has somewhere positively impacted my work. I can reach my audience via an online mode that I never thought possible. It feels great.
What do you recommend – an online class/session or offline?
Both online and offline have advantages and disadvantages. Offline sessions are usually preferred because you can see your clients in person and build a stronger relationship with them. When it comes to online sessions, I like them since they allow those who find it strenuous to travel from far distant areas to still be in touch with me.
Do you practice online counselling?
Yes, I provide online consultations. This service is available at the clients’ convenience in the following formats: video, audio, and text.
What are some of the challenges you have dealt with?
The biggest challenge I have had was finding a job that is a good fit for me. Psychology is a broad discipline with a wide range of specialties. After I figured out my niche is education, I wanted to join a reputable company to put my abilities to use and grow with the company.
I had a hard time finding a role that matches my personality. Organizations have now frequently exploited the term “counsellor” for a variety of unrelated job descriptions. It is critical not to give up on your dreams! And therefore, I chose to continue doing various courses and start working on my own shortly after. I feel content with where I am today in my career.
What is your greatest fear? How do you manage it?
My biggest fear is death – that I or someone in my family will die. It’s a little hard for me to imagine my life without them. And to overcome this fear, I try to think positively and look at the brighter side of life. I try to train myself to be mindful and enjoy every moment.
What or who inspired you to pursue Psychology?
During my high school years, I was like any other student who was unclear about what she wanted to do after completing school. The thoughts of which course to pursue haunted me day and night. It was this confusion and uncertainty that pushed me to seek vocational guidance from a professional counsellor. My interaction with the counsellor was a positive experience.
I had a lot of inhibitions before going to one. But it looks like it all worked in my favor eventually. The counsellor introduced me to Psychology. After a few weeks of studying and talking to my professors, it became clear that this was something I yearned to explore.
To top it off, my parents were always there to provide a helping hand. As a result, I developed a passion for pursuing psychology and doing my part to help society become a better place to live in. So this has been my inspiration and motivation for the subject.
What piece of advice would you give to college graduates who desire to become educators/professors of Psychology or Social Work?
Psychology is a broad field with several sub-specialties, and not all will be of interest to you. However, it is essential to pick a psychological topic that you are keen to explore and learn more about it beyond the classroom walls. Look up research areas on the internet that interest you, read books and take online courses not taught in a regular class. Try to get yourself enrolled in an internship/mentorship program that will help you grasp the practical element of the subject. These will further hone your skillset and help you decide your specialisation in the future. And most importantly, never be afraid to ask questions.
How can people approach you for consultation or tie-ups?
I am available on call / WhatsApp / Instagram. You can book an appointment on this number – +91-7837505600