Position Yourself for Success with a Growth Mindset
Psychologist Dr. Carol Dweck brought this concept of a “growth mindset” to life in her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. The concept changed the way myself and millions of others think about their successes and failures. So what is a growth mindset and why is it better than the fixed mindset?
What exactly is a growth mindset?
Let’s start with the fixed mindset. This is the line of thinking that says, “I can’t do that”, “I’m not good at that”, “I’ll fail if I try that”. It is the paralyzing belief that our skills and abilities are fixed and cannot change. The growth mindset, on the other hand, believes that everyone can improve their abilities in a given area. Developing new skills in a particular subject may come easier to some than others but everyone has the ability to improve. You can see how the growth mindset opens up a world of possibility while the fixed mindset leaves us with nothing but limiting beliefs.
How to Position Yourself for Success
Focus on a glass half full
When we focus on what’s going well, we encourage more positive thoughts to flow our way. Next time you find yourself feeling like something is not going your way or that a task is impossible, shift your perspective. Instead, take a moment to pause and reflect on this challenge. Ask yourself what is going well. How will this headwind support your growth? This exercise will come more naturally with practice but take the time to truly sit and reflect on the positive and the potential that brings to you.
Show gratitude for the small wins
As the adage goes, “It’s about the journey, not the destination”. Not only do we want to acknowledge the small wins or milestones along the way toward our goal, but we also want to acknowledge and show gratitude for the effort that gets put into the journey.
Everyone knows that there’s typically a steep learning curve to starting a new role with a new company, or even a new career altogether. The fixed mindset will find this daunting but the growth mindset will embrace the challenge. The growth mindset will take joy in learning a new skill or figuring out a new way to do things; while the fixed mindset is paralyzed by the unknown. As a result, individuals have varying degrees of success in a role that is outside their comfort zone. Which one do you think is more likely to move up in their career?
Have compassion for yourself
As Carol Dweck points out, it’s nearly impossible to have a growth mindset in every aspect of our lives. All of us are imperfect beings who experience a growth mindset in some areas but a fixed mindset in others. We need to pay attention to where each of these mindsets shows up for us, and actively teach ourselves to focus on growth where it does not come naturally.
Try These Language Shifts
Shifting your mindset takes time and consistent effort but the shift is achievable over time. When you successfully shift to a growth mindset, you’ll notice possibilities start to open up for you. If you’d like help making the shift, book a call with me and we can start working on a strategy together.