saata VOL: 1, ISSUE: 1 - Dec 2021 facebook


The joy of making it!

The first thing that comes to me when I think of my CTA journey is very closely mirrored by very popular lines of Sharukh Khan from the movie “Om Shanti Om”

“Kehte hain agar kisi cheez ko dil se chaho; to puri kainaat usse tumse milane ki koshish mein lag jaati hai “(Loosely translated it means - if you desire something deeply from your heart, the entire universe conspires to make it happen for you).

Nothing really happens until we decide to make it happen.

My CTA journey started at that point of decision. And what a roller coaster it has been. The 40s, family ups and downs and the pandemic to name a few of struggles in the background. Yet those were the blessings in disguise - the 40s and the wisdom and maturity that comes with it, the ups and downs and the struggles that really helped me grow as a human being and a psychotherapist along with the strong support from my family, all my supervisors and my besties who urged me to the finish line. Here I am penning this short note for many of you out there who are aspirationally looking at adding this very same milestone to your name. All I want to say to you is - it’s not an exam, it’s a process that keeps you in a transformational dialogue with several parts of yourself.

Quick few pointers on the key aspects of the exam:


Just keep your attitude of wanting to look at your work through different lenses, challenge yourself and take in all the perspectives that come your way through application and supervision.

Written exam

All you need to keep in focus is it’s not something that has been designed only to test your competencies and knowledge but an important tool that helps you see yourself as a Transactional Analyst and a platform to tell your story and present your work to someone who is curious & wanting to know all of it. The biggest permission you can give yourself is to take it at your pace and just be YOU.

Oral Exam

This was celebratory right from the word GO. Imagine you are the hero of your story and the spotlight is on you while a few curious co-CTAs want you to showcase the highlights of your work and how you made the magic happen. That’s just it. I enjoyed it so much that I didn’t want the exam to end. After all, it took years to become a Transactional Analyst and I was eager to cover every remarkable turn and all the “aha” moments.

Looking back, every member who walked the journey with me mattered - my family, friends, peers, supervisors and above all my trainer/primary supervisor who was confidently and enthusiastically waiting at the finish line beaming with pride. Kudos to all of you for being my grounding rock! I needed that more than ever. And yay! for myself – I made it! And let me end this with another scintillating line from the same movie – Om shanti Om – “Picture abhi baaki hai mere dost” (A fitting translation of this – And miles to go before I sleep!).

By Priya Veeraraghavan

Happy Hiking on Mount Everest

When I began my CTA journey, my ego image was of myself preparing to climb Mount Everest. This image wasn't comforting as I felt this expedition isn't for everyone and I wasn't sure if I was eligible.

I began my preparation by first acknowledging that I already have to climb this mountain. I knew I enjoyed being a psychotherapist when I sometimes felt like Sherlock Holmes when I had to dig deeper into the unconscious to discover the root-cause of my client's defense and coping strategies. This brought in a lot of excitement and a safety net during sessions with my clients. I used bodily experiences and intuitive thinking as I worked with my clients. In the end I realized all I needed was to find a school or a concept that helps me connect my work. I began to read a number of articles and books to see what theory fits best with my style and approach. This approach made me feel appreciated, liberated and also allowed me to accept my uniqueness.

During this process, I saw the importance of supervision and the contribution of my supervisor. It really helped in re-evaluating and refining my thinking throughout the journey. I gained a better understanding of myself as a professional and became aware of my own games and scripty beliefs. I noticed how every time I sat to write my essay to please my Parental figures, I struggled to maintain concentration and got frustrated with the number of corrections I got back from my supervisor. I realized that to have a comfortable experience it is not enough to just learn to connect theory with application but also to work through our intrapsychic processes.

Once I began to work through my defenses, my essays flowed beautifully. I realized that CTA shouldn’t be the factor that makes me feel ok, rather I have to be OK first to complete my CTA journey. I did not climb Mount Everest, just went on a happy hike of self-exploration!

By Sushma Ramachandran

A Reflection of Who I Am In What I Do

My CTA process began with a sense of self acceptance followed by a commitment to myself and a rough deadline of when I'd like to be through. Having this clarity and goal helped me to stay on the course, even when my workload grew or my motivations dropped. I would write/rewrite, read, reflect on myself personally & professionally, using the generous support of several colleagues, supervisors and mentors to guide me along the way. In all of this, what I understood and value most, is that the CTA was an opportunity for me to deeply know and own my identity and practice as a TA Educator and thereafter passionately share this through my written and oral exams. It was no easy feat, but one I'm really glad I undertook. The exam itself, especially the viva, was a live experience of OKness both ways. I held an attitude of 'I am who I am and I know what I know', which really served me well. I was calm and comfortable to talk about my work authentically. We had 2 Ukrainians also who get certified with us, their presence and determination reminding me starkly of the larger socio-political scenario of being a global citizen, in addition to multiple other roles and responsibilities we each hold. I am reflective of our bigger purpose and sense of community as we are privileged to be part of this TA fraternity.

Nisha Rao - CTA Education


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