I have discovered something lately. I am fighting a fixed mindset! I have been told how smart and talented I was. When I came up against something difficult, therefore, I thought of myself as dumb. Through my growing up years, things had been easy and I had not developed the tools to deal with struggle or even see failure as a learning opportunity.
What is a fixed mindset? It’s the belief that if we don’t have the smarts, gifts, or talents to do something, we give up trying. What is the opposite of a fixed mindset? It is a growth mindset that says persist in the face of set backs or challenges, because effort and perseverance pay off. The brain will grow when we persist, persevere and use failures as growth opportunities.
How does the brain work for you to grow?
The brain actually acts like a muscle. The more activity you do, more and more neuron connections occur, the brain becomes more and more complex. What you do in life physically changes the way your brain looks. According to scientist, John Medina in Brain Rules, you can wire and rewire your brain, based on the simple activity and focus you choose to do – musician, professional sport, college professor.
How do you move into this growth mindset?
Pursing your passions can help you move this direction. What is your God-given purpose? The growth mindset helps you believe the effort you put forth today will move you forward tomorrow . The growth mindset says you have all you need to move forward. That growth mind set builds your emotional resiliency as well. A fixed mindset will hold you back- “ I don’t have what it takes to get to where I want to go.” It is much easier to give up with a fixed mindset.
Growth takes time, effort and a lot of work, as you rewire your brain. For example, Mozart was not an overnight sensation. He labored for more than ten years before he produced any work that we admire today. What are the ways that you grow best?
For example, I am a kinesthetic learner. For me to focus on what I am learning, I need to be typing up notes, underlining in a book or be physically interacting with the material. I also need time to practice and give myself grace to learn from my mistakes.
To grow, what messages are you sending to yourself?
To move forward in a growth mindset, what are you telling yourself daily? Listen to those messages. Are they growth oriented or fixed? For example, instead of focusing on the mistake you made, reframe it. What can you learn from the incident? What challenge is in front of you? Now what happens when you think of the incident? How do you feel when you reframe it in a growth mindset?
Think of reframing each time you notice those fixed messages coming into i your head. What happens to your body, your mind, your spirit? I love this TED Talks statement by Eduuardo Briceno from Mindsetworks , “I haven’t learned that, YET.” What a powerful word YET is.
Growth is where we look for it. Let me know at NancyBoothCoaching facebook or in the comments below how you are growing, becoming more positive and turning a growth mindset into a constructive force in your life!
Nancy Booth is a certified life coach and certified brain-based coach. She loves creating safe spaces for women going through life’s transitions to discover and support their visions for health and well-being in an overwhelming world, explore possibilities for next steps and find hope. She writes about taming the overwhelm and reducing stress, looking for ways to motivate, energize and inspire you! You can sign up to receive her weekly blog or contact her to find out ways you can begin to shed overwhelm and stress. It’s time to explore possibilities of new relationships, better life pacing and gain hope and peace.
What a wonderful post. Back when I was in physical therapy I was humbled by my lack of ability to do what my therapist asked. I turned into a lesson for me on the struggles I asked my students to accomplish every day. This takes that lesson and brings it into more relevance. I have been struggling to accept having to drag a c PAC machine around with me. I am working on reframing that thought into a positive one but haven’t gotten there YET. LOTS TO THINK ABOUT HERE. Thanks for sharing, Mary
Thanks, Mary. I am glad you can relate. My reframing is getting lots of practice, too, as I focus on what I want (being free to coach full-time) and what is not YET. I am glad our minds still can grow:-) We’ll grow together…..