What kind of a mindset do you have? Today I am encouraging you to adopt a growth mindset and explaining why I think it is so important.
“Don’t be too timid and squeamish about your actions. All life is an experiment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
We often assume that people can and do think in the same way. However, that’s not necessarily true. Each person carries a different mode of thinking in his or her own mind. Mindset contains two terms: Mind and Set, in other words understanding, feeling, perceiving, psyche and soul (mind) and the individual compilation or reduction of environmental, verbal or emotional messages (set). One could also say: attitude of the mind. Logically, it follows that a person’s thinking depends on basic assumptions, values, and principles that have formed them, its’ interaction, and what a person notices.
Depending on the mindset, people perceive their environment completely differently. Your mindset ensures that you intuitively capture certain information and hide others. That is, it acts as a filter. Your mindset also influences how you interpret your perceptions, what information you make more readily accessible. What options for action you see in a situation, which decisions you make, what you do or do not, all that is influenced massively by your mindset.
Why Mindset Matters:
To be successful in today’s world, and going forwards in our lives, we benefit greatly by performing better and learning to flourish in all sorts of challenging situations, instead of letting the narrative in our heads take over. We can learn to get better at persisting with those problems we would have once stalled over – no longer giving up in the end. We can learn to get better at seeking inspiration from the people we would have once shied away from. Essentially, we can all shift our mindset to see the world and everything in it as a never-ending opportunity to learn (something I’ve been writing about often in recent weeks). Because, when we do, we’re far more likely to future-proof our life.
Research conducted by ‘YMC Advisors and Implementation Partners’ showed that, the view individuals adopt for themselves profoundly affects the way they lead their life. It can determine whether you become the person you want to be and whether you accomplish the things you value. How does this happen? How can a simple belief have the power to transform your psychology and, as a result, your life? Believing that your qualities are carved in stone – the fixed mindset – creates an urgency to prove yourself over and over. If you have only a certain amount of intelligence, a certain personality, and a certain moral character – well, then you’d better prove that you have a healthy dose of them. It simply wouldn’t do to look or feel deficient in these most basic characteristics.
“Your beliefs become your thoughts, your thoughts become your words, your words become your actions, your actions become your habits, your habits become your values, your values become your destiny.” — Mahatma Gandhi
What is a Growth Mindset?
The mindset we bring to our actions matters – a lot! In the 1980s Carol Dweck and her colleagues became interested in students’ attitudes to failure. While some students rebounded after doing badly, others were devastated by it. The researchers coined the terms fixed mindset and growth mindset to describe two very different underlying beliefs people have about their learning and intelligence, and she found these beliefs have a big impact on how we approach life’s challenges.
In a fixed mindset we believe that intelligence is static, and it’s how intelligent we look to others that counts. We thus tend to avoid challenge as we might look foolish if we fail, and we give up more easily. In a growth mindset we believe intelligence can be developed, which leads to a desire to learn. We thus embrace challenge and persist through setbacks.
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas Edison
How to Develop A Growth Mindset?
Developing a growth mindset isn’t easy, however it is achievable with time and effort. Here are 10 tremendous techniques you can follow for developing a growth mindset.
1. Become a Lifelong Learner
“Dreams don’t work unless you do.” – John C. Maxwell
The foundation of a growth mindset is the willingness to be a lifelong
learner. With the evolution of online learning, anyone can further or enhance
his or her education. With learning, effort, exploration, and practice, you can
always keep growing, and when the information is literally at your fingertips,
there’s no excuse not to take advantage of an opportunity to better yourself.
Read this article for more on this subject: Why self-education is so important, and to engage in it. https://www.adam-eason.com/why-self-education-is-so-important-and-how-to-engage-in-it-regularly/
2. Invest Your Effort
“Effort is grossly underrated.” – Gary Vaynerchuk
When something challenges us, there is always a solution, but the solution can often involve hard work. Be prepared to roll up your sleeves and put in the effort required for your breakthrough.
You want to learn how to create engaging videos, but all of the video creation and editing software is driving you up the wall. How can you ever learn something like this? You could go with a fixed mindset and never ever try, or you could research and watch a how-to video course on YouTube, Lynda.com or Udemy on how to get started creating engaging videos using Camtasia to enhance your classroom instruction and blast through this mindset.
3. Be Curious
“No problem can withstand the assault of sustained thinking.” – Voltaire
Curiosity is the engine of innovation and curious people have an on-going, intrinsic interest in both their inner experience and the world around them. Life is never boring for a curious person. Curiosity helps your mind to be more active instead of passive. The mind is a muscle and the more exercise it gets the stronger it becomes.
4. Turn Your Problems into Opportunities
“There is no failure. Only feedback.” – Robert Allen
Remember you were born to be real, not perfect and real people make
mistakes. Some of the best achievements in your life will be born from your
biggest setbacks that can, in turn, become your biggest learning opportunities.
Problems are for the mind what exercise is for your muscles. They help you to
build your mental strength and flexibility.
Read this article for more on this subject: Learn to enjoy life’s problems. https://www.adam-eason.com/learn-to-enjoy-lifes-problems/
5. Challenge Your Paradigms and Beliefs
“A challenge only becomes an obstacle when you bow to it.” – Ray Davis
Culture is known to have been founded on habits, attitudes, beliefs and expectations. These beliefs are called paradigms and are formed over time (from your parents and their parents, and teachers etc) as well as environmentally. Where we live also determines many of the beliefs we will form. If we want to experience new things, we must be ready to challenge some of the limiting beliefs that we have formed over time that hold us back, even without our permission, as they can be deeply held beliefs that keep us stuck without our awareness or permission. When we begin to challenge our beliefs, things start to become uncomfortable and we can either move forward into growth, or safely back to our fixed mindset.
6. Become More Self-Aware
“Success is not an accident, success is a choice.” – Stephen Curry
Reflect on what your typical response is when faced with certain challenges, what triggers you to transition into a fixed mindset and how can you return to a position of growth? Do you worry about not being ‘good enough’ or doubt your ability to find a solution to a problem you feel you don’t have the skills to solve? Do you feel overwhelmed and fear failure, so focus your attention on other tasks, tasks which you know you’re naturally good at? When given feedback, do you feel your defences go up? You need to think about how you feel at those key ‘trigger’ moments, listening to the voice in your head and what it’s telling you. When you do, you’ll be able to pick out those unhelpful self-limiting narratives going around in your head, narratives that you’ll need to quiet if you are to move from a fixed to a growth mindset in any meaningful way.
7. Understand That Your Brain Works Like A Muscle
“Nothing is impossible. The word itself says ‘I’m possible!” – Audrey Hepburn
This phenomenon is known as neuroplasticity, as has been explained by Professor and Neuroscientist, Michael Merzenich, the man widely acclaimed as the father of the concept of brain plasticity. Research have shown that not only is the brain designed to change, but also it’s functioning can be improved at any stage. According to Merzenich, the human brain works much like a muscle, requiring challenges in order to grow. You therefore can’t expect your brain to grow if you’re constantly doing the same things, and not challenging it. Instead, Merzenich says that you need to stay in ‘challenge mode’. Just think about the process of getting fit; it takes reps and practice to build muscle, the brain is no different. To develop skill in a specific area, understand that it’s not your brain that’s stopping you from doing just that, it’s your mindset.
8. Consistently Challenge Yourself
“A person who never made a mistake never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein
Overcome your fear of failure or looking stupid, ignore any self-doubt you have, and focus your time and energy on those tasks you perceive to be more difficult than others on your to do list. When you do, try to interpret and tackle these from a mindset of growth. Yes, you might fail. But in the process, you’ll learn something about yourself that you wouldn’t have done otherwise – including what you can do next time to ensure you do better in the future. With a shift in mindset and practising adopting this mindset, you can quickly expand your skills as you’re starting to approach every new challenge with enthusiasm and confidence, instead of with avoidance and fear.
9. Understand That Success Takes Time
“Don’t worry about failure. Worry about the chances you miss when you don’t even try.” – Sherman Finesilver
Remember we’re never as good as we possibly can be at a given skill as soon as we start practising it – instead, it takes work and time to master. So, whenever you take on a new challenge or embark on learning a new skill, stop putting so much pressure on yourself. Instead, understand that you will encounter struggles at the beginning. Pick something that you can’t do at the moment – that one thing that you’ve always had some kind of mental block about. Spend time practising it. Don’t worry about not being good at it straight away, or about someone else being better. Just focus on your own learning journey, starting small and building your skills bit by bit from there. Over time, you’ll start to see progress – this will reinforce your inclination and confidence when it comes to learning, meaning you’re far more likely to continue on that journey, rather than bailing out at the first hurdle.
10. Don’t Give Up
“The only thing that overcomes hard luck is hard work.” – Harry Golden
Just think of all the things you could have under your belt, that your fixed mindset is stopping you from. Don’t make the excuse that you “don’t have enough time”, to do something new, or “that’s hard thig to do”– instead, carve out the time. The highest-achieving people in history appreciated this. Just look at Albert Einstein, who observed that “it’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.”
The most incredible thing about practicing a growth mindset is that you are truly becoming limitless and can build the capacity to discover your own potential. There is no logical way to correctly practice a growth mindset and find challenges to be impossible at the same time. We’ve all heard the saying, “where there’s a will there’s a way.” Well, technically where there’s a growth mindset there’s a way. Once you eliminate the idea that you can’t do something just because “you’ve never been good at it” or “it’s just not my strong suit,” your potential as a person, influencer and leader becomes limitless.
Have some of these themes here resonated with you? Then have a read of these pages:
1. Do you need help or support in a particular area of your life?
Coaching with Adam Eason Or Hypnotherapy with Adam Eason
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Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about self-hypnosis, understand the evidence based principles of it from a scientific perspective and learn how to apply it to many areas of your life while having fun and in a safe environment and have the opportunity to test everything you learn, then come and join me for my one day seminar which does all that and more, have a read here: The Science of Self-Hypnosis Seminar. Alternatively, go grab a copy of my Science of self-hypnosis book, it’ll help you live with integrity!