How a growth mindset is better than a fixed mindset when it comes to reaching our goals.
Have you ever heard that Tony Robbins quote: "Where focus goes, energy flows"? I've been working with a few clients lately who just feel like they're in a rut and can't move forward or don't see themselves making enough progress. I've been talking with them more about this concept of focus and mindset.
There are two types of mindsets I want to focus on today: fixed and growth.
A fixed mindset essentially means that your intelligence is static. In this mindset, people often think that the hand they're dealt determines their personality, intelligence, and character. When operating in a fixed state of mind people tend to want to always look smart and keep that persona up so they avoid challenges, give up easily, ignore feedback, and feel threatened by others success.
A growth mindset means that your intelligence can be developed. In this mindset, people see the hand they're dealt as a foundation to build upon. When operating in a growth state of mind people believe by putting in the effort they can cultivate their basic qualities to a higher level; they're always finding ways to stretch their boundaries and grow in new directions.
Carol Dweck, a psychology professor at Stanford University, is one of the world's leading researchers on mindset and psychological traits. This YouTube video focuses on how to develop a growth mindset and is worth a view.
I'm no leading expert in this area but what I do try to do with the people I work with is to help them cultivate a growth mindset by changing the way they talk. Here are some examples:
Instead of This is too hard
Try I can do hard things.
Instead of I quit
Try I'll stick with this.
Instead of It has to be picture perfect
Try It's good enough for my needs.
Instead of I'm the most disorganized person ever
Try I'm working on being more organized.
Instead of Nothing ever seems to help
Try I'm going to try a new approach.
Instead of This is going to take forever, why bother?
Try I'm going to take this one step at a time.
Instead of I only managed to make my bed today
Try I started my day off right by making my bed.
When you put your focus on positive self-talk you start to change your mindset. This can lead to more opportunities and a better outlook on life. In Dweck's research, "a growth mindset is seen as the mindset with greater opportunities for success, satisfaction, and joy in life." And who doesn't want that?
What ways can you start to develop a growth mindset in your daily language?