How does an individual create their best sense of self? By developing a healthy, positive mindset.
Keep Going. Keep Growing.
Dr. Carol Dweck, an American psychologist, explains how to do this in her book: Mindset. The New Psychology of Success. In it, she focuses on two types of mindset – growth and fixed. Dweck notes that mindset manifests itself from a very early age. It dictates behavior, relationship successes and failures (both personally and professionally), and the capacity for happiness. Dweck coined the terms growth mindset and fixed mindset to explain how people interpret their intelligence and learning ability. Let’s take a moment to examine these two types of mindset.
First, individuals possessing a growth mindset believe that they can develop their basic abilities through dedication and hard work. They love learning and do not fear a challenge. People with a growth mindset are resilient in the face of failure. As a result, they experience more accomplishments. Chalk that up to their persistence. They do not give up but keep moving forward. Individuals with a growth mindset improve their intelligence and learn new things through hard work, training, and perseverance. Again, these individuals do not fear failure. Instead, they view it as a way to grow and be successful.
Individuals with a fixed mindset believe their basic abilities (i.e., intelligence or talent) are fixed traits. These are taught to them or occur as a natural talent. They believe that it's an inborn or natural talent that causes their success. They do not think they can change. And, they assume no amount of effort will make their abilities better. People with a fixed mindset believe their qualities are engraved in stone. The fixed mindset is the most common. Worse, it is the most harmful.
Can you change your mindset?
Yes! How? By changing the thought process. The following suggestions are a guide to go from a Fixed Mindset to a Growth Mindset:
Instead of thinking, “I can’t,”… think, “I’m still learning. I’ll keep trying!”
Instead of thinking, “ It’s too hard,”…think, “I’ll keep practicing, and it will get easier!”
Instead of thinking, “I don’t know how,”…think, “I can learn how!”
Instead of thinking, “I’m afraid to make a mistake,”…think, “Mistakes are how I learn and get better!”
Instead of thinking, “I give up,”…think, “I’ll try a different way!” (2)
Believe You Can!
Developing (or maintaining) a healthy, positive mindset is an integral part of a happy life. It begins with personal autonomy (i.e., taking control of one’s life and living it the way one chooses). Being autonomous goes hand-in-hand with a growth mindset. Autonomy is not a talent people are born with but something they can learn. A professional Autonomy Mindset Coach can help individuals on their journey to be their best selves. Remember, it’s your life, your vision, your journey!
- MINDSET, The New Psychology of Success by CAROL S. DWECK, PH.D. (2006).