Nela Canovic, Been reading them all my life, and sometimes in my dreams. Answered 4d ago I’ll say it again and again, for the rest of my life, because I seriously believe this to be true. Carol Dweck’s book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. Why? In a nutshell, because it changed my mind about my mind. About its potential. About what I thought it could do, which was limiting—and didn’t help me understand the big picture. And about how I could shape it so it can serve me better. So I can become that version of myself that I’m proud of, every single day. And that’s quite a feat for one book. Dweck— a professor at Stanford and one of the world’s leading researchers in the field of developmental psychology—explains why the mindset we nurture throughout our life is the single critical element of our self-development. She makes a distinction between two types of mindsets: A fixed mindset: where you believe that your skills and qualities are “fixed” i.e. they’re something you’re born with or have possessed since early childhood, and there’s nothing you can do to change them in any way. Some examples of fixed mindset attitudes are the following: Success to me means that I can prove I am smart or talented. I feel successful whenever things feel easy and I can do them effortlessly. I feel dumb whenever I make a mistake and when it takes me a long time to solve a problem. I feel like I have to do everything perfectly, or else I shouldn’t bother. I’ve never been good at math, so it’s no surprise I am failing in this class. A growth mindset: where you believe that your skills and qualities can be changed and developed over time, through continuous effort and training. Some examples of growth mindset attitudes are the following: Success to me means that I need to stretch myself to learn something new. I feel successful whenever I work hard on achieving a goal. I understand that I grow in situations where I need to work hard as I’m trying to solve a difficult problem. I know that making mistakes is a natural part of the learning process, and I focus on learning something from each mistake I make. I haven’t received good grades in math last year, and I’m excited to practice and improve my problem-solving skills this year. Where do these mindsets come from? While a fixed mindset is adopted over time by listening to messages from a young age about what we can, should, or shouldn’t do (usually by parents, relatives, and teachers), a growth mindset is something we can nurture in ourselves as we deliberately select those learning opportunities that can benefit us. What areas of our life are affected by the mindset we select for ourselves? Our education: Having a fixed mindset can lead us to avoid getting a degree in a field that can be an exciting growth opportunity, and conversely push us towards making a “safe” choice or studying something we think we “should.” Our career: Having a fixed mindset will make us get defensive every time we receive feedback in the workplace (instead of seeing it as an opportunity to improve the quality of our work), or it can make us feel like we must reaffirm our status on the team by putting others down and criticizing their work. Our relationships: Having a fixed mindset can make us feel unhappy if our friends, romantic partners, children and other family members don’t fit into our expectations of what we think they should be and how they “should” act towards us, or it can cause us to blame others or feel bitter and resentful towards them. What are some ways to grow your mindset? Here are 5 ideas. Idea #1. Refuse to quit when things get tough. Maybe you’re in the middle of reading through a tough chapter in preparation for an exam, and your mind is just not into it. Or a task you’re doing at work is boring and dull for you. Maybe it’s just something as simple as you’re getting hungry and can’t be bothered to continue working. The solution? Don’t give in to the urge. Keep going. Imagine that your brain is making connections as you’re working through a problem, and it will learn from this experience. Don’t quit halfway. Idea #2. Don’t focus on problems, obstacles, or things you don’t currently possess. Whenever you do, you put yourself in reactive mode. Life shouldn’t be about just reacting to what’s happening to (or around) us. It’s much more empowering to be proactive. For example, if you’ve encountered a problem, it’s better to think of alternative solutions to getting it fixed. Or, if you’re envious that a close friend just accepted an offer of their dream job, it’s better to map out what you want out of your career and come up with a six-month plan to get your dream job. Idea #3. Take a fresh look at your past—mistakes, failures and all. Is there something that happened in your past that you believe measures you and how successful or unsuccessful you are? Identify that experience. Maybe it’s getting fired from your last job, or flunking an exam, or ending a relationship that meant a lot to you. Tell yourself, this experience has happened to me, but it does not define me. Then ask yourself, how can I learn from it? What has it taught me about myself and what I truly care about? How can it show me the path towards getting what I want? Idea #4. Expand your learning horizons. Don’t think that a learning experience only happens in the classroom, sitting at a table, or reading a textbook. Just because something is not taught in school or at university, does not mean you shouldn’t spend time learning about it. Go to the library and pick up books on a topic that is interesting to you. Take an online class in the evening, or watch free tutorials on YouTube on how to develop a skill you think would be empowering to you. Don’t let fear hold you back just because you don’t know anything about a topic. Maybe you can ask someone who’s an expert in that area and who has mastered a skill you want to develop. Idea #5. Make specific plans to grow your mindset each day. It’s not going to happen automatically, and you can’t rely on other people to point the way every single moment so you can become that better version of yourself that you want to see. Take ownership of your day. Start with this question: What are the opportunities for learning and growth today? Write down a short list of 3–5 items to choose from. Be specific. If you need to do research on something, write what exactly you’ll need to do and how long it will take. If you need to practice a skill, write down where you’ll start practicing it and how. Always focus on answering when, where, and how you’ll proactively grow your mindset, so you set your own path to making it happen. 118.3k Views · 1,592 Upvotes

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