The New Psychology of Success
The Growth Mindset Checklist
Do you believe that your intelligence or personality is fixed, carved in stone and can’t be changed?
Or, do you believe that your intelligence, and your personal qualities are things that you can cultivate through your efforts, your strategies, and help from others?
Success requires that you engage in the process of your personal growth at all times. And of all the things in life, what you believe about yourself can impact your success or failure. People who believe that their abilities can be improved through their hard work and dedication typically move ahead and take action without coming up with excuses. These same people also demonstrate an open mind, are willing to learn and have been seen as most successful in different aspects of their life. This checklist will run you through the simple tips and techniques to unleash your full potential.
Chapter 1: What is Mindset?
How Mindsets Are Formed
Since time immemorial, people have thought, acted and fared differently from one another. For the most part, common sense dictates that these differences arise from the variances in people’s backgrounds, learning experiences and training. Research also points in the same direction.
So while experiences, backgrounds and training are all external variables, even internal variables like genetic makeup have a part to play.
Types Of Mindsets
There are different types of mindsets that can either help you unleash your best or contain your potential.
+ Abundance Mindset vs Scarcity Mindset
+ Productive Mindset vs Defensive Mindset
+ Fixed Mindset vs Growth Mindset
Chapter 2: Why is Mindset Important?
Now every mindset can work in a dual manner. For instance, while your individual mindset can open doors for you, it can also set serious limitations based on your beliefs and approach in different scenarios.
This means that just as mindsets can help you spot opportunities, they can equally trap you in self-defeating cycles as well. The stories that you tell yourself and the things that you believe about yourself can go either way.
Importance Of Mindset In Life
Having the right mindset for any particular task is almost a prerequisite for success. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, student, entrepreneur, or in any other profession, you need the right mindset to be successful at what you do.
Every profession comes with its own hurdles and obstacles and having a positive mindset allows you to not only overcome those obstacles but even welcome them as challenges or an opportunity to learn and grow.
Mindsets Are More Than Beliefs
Mindsets aren’t mere beliefs. They have the capacity to dictate your reactions to situations and other tendencies. They serve a number of cognitive functions and let you frame situations. At the same time, your mindset will also direct your attention to the most important cues and filter out irrelevant information so that you don’t overwhelm yourself.
Your mindset will also give you direction by recommending sensible goals to achieve so that you have a sense of direction. Once your mindset becomes habitual, it defines who you are and what you can become.
How Mindsets Are Formed
For the majority of people, their mindset is created for them at an early age. As you grow and mature, life experiences and events may contradict that earlier knowledge and somewhat change your mindset.
However, the earlier knowledge continues to stick and becomes your reference point for much of your life. Your mindset continues developing and becomes stronger the more you repeat and practice your beliefs.
The Emotion Factor
However, repetition isn’t the only factor at play in the creation of habits and beliefs. The emotion factor also plays in this equation. When you mix repeated thoughts and actions with emotions, the expected results can alter.
Both helpful and bad habits get created the same way- through repetition. But the habit can be embedded more quickly and strongly when combined with emotion.
What Does Science Say About Mindsets?
Neuroscience or the study of the nervous system tells us that the brain is continually creating and destroying neural pathways. These pathways, in turn, form our thoughts and behavior patterns which tells your brain to make decisions, choose actions and present you to the outside world.
Chapter 3: Fixed vs Growth Mindset
By now you know that the way you think about your ability has a very real impact on the results you achieve in life. Interestingly enough, both fixed and growth mindsets are highly self-reinforcing, but in vastly different ways.
Mindset in Practice
Individuals with these two mindsets not only think differently but also react to information in a different manner. In fact, the differences can be stark when they respond to information about performance.
The Basics of Fixed vs Growth Mindset
People with a fixed mindset accept their traits as givens. They believe there is a certain amount of intelligence and talent and there is nothing that can change this fact. So people with this mindset are often concerned about their traits and how adequate they are.
The growth mindset, on the other hand often exhibits resilience and perseverance in the face of errors. Instead of adopting a defensive approach, they become motivated to better their performance.
Chapter 4: The Dangers of a Fixed Mindset
The advantages of a growth mindset may seem apparent, but many people have a fixed mindset in certain situations. This can be very counterproductive because this mindset prevents important skills from developing and growing. This, in turn sabotages your happiness and health in the future.
Here are other aspects you’ll miss out on:
1. Undermining the importance of effort
2. The obsession to prove worth
3. The desire to be flawless
4. Decreasing self-knowledge
5. The need for constant validation
To summarize, here is how a fixed mindset looks at things:
Skills: The fixed mindset believes this is something you’re born with which can’t be changed.
Challenges: The fixed mindset regards this a something to avoid at all costs. There is the constant threat that a challenge could expose your lack of skill and you tend to give up easily when in such a position.
Effort: This is considered unnecessary by the fixed mind. It’s something that people resort to when they aren’t good enough for the job.
Feedback: Feedback makes the fixed mindset get on the defensive. When given feedback, people with this mindset take it personally and consider it an exclusive attack on their performance or skills. If it isn’t to their liking they may even ignore the feedback completely.
Setbacks: When faced with setbacks, people with a fixed mindset will put the blame on others. They also get discouraged easily and are more likely to quit completely.
Chapter 5: The Power of a Growth Mindset
A growth mindset allows people to view themselves as capable of doing well in most, if not all settings. They definitely don’t consider themselves as restricted by their current abilities, but believe that they can do whatever they want as long as they practice.
This optimism and creativity indicates a growth mindset which will also empower you to gain the following:
+ Improvement through effort
+ Offers a sense of fulfilment
+ Develops resilience
+ Buffers against demotivation
+ Encourages perseverance
+ Promotes critical thinking
+ Practice makes perfect
To summarize, a growth mindset sees the following situations as:
Skills: The growth mindset believes that skills are something that you can constantly change, improve and develop. Skills come from hard work so you can’t stop working.
Challenges: The growth mindset is eager to embrace challenges and views them as an opportunity to grow. The chance to engage in a challenge makes the growth mind more persistent.
Effort: Effort is essential for a growth mindset and may even override talent. When the growth mindset sees effort as the path to success, it realizes the necessity for lifelong learning.
Feedback: The growth mindset views feedback as something constructive and an experience to learn from. It is an effective means to identify areas that need improvement.
Setbacks: Instead of putting a damper on things, setbacks are seen as ways to improve on current talents and efforts.
Chapter 6: Can You Change Your Mindset?
Beliefs can be changed when they no longer serve you or enable you to get to your goals.
+ Resistant to change
+ Using fear to change your mindset
+ Using actions to change your mindset
+ Identifying your counter mindsets
+ Shifting gears from the negative to the positive
+ Understand “WHY” you need to change
+ Start small to finish big
Chapter 7: Strategies to Develop a Growth Mindset
When you let results such as your test scores, your weight, your job or your appearance define you, you become the victim of a fixed mindset.
On the contrary, a growth mindset is all about learning and you can speed up the process by following some true and tried strategies.
+ Continual learning
+ Be committed
+ Develop healthy self esteem
+ Work on your perspective
+ Set effective goals
+ Manage your inner negative voice
+ Face adversity
+ Be open to feedback
Chapter 8: Dealing with Setbacks
After debating the good and the bad about different mindsets, it becomes clearer that the way the mind responds to setbacks, disappointments or failure is very important.
For instance, for a fixed mindset a setback becomes a failure that distorts reality. This distorted view prevents people from seeing a situation for what it is. And without a clear picture of the situation, it can become impossible to pivot, solve or make any progress.
But for a growth mindset, this setback doesn’t become overwhelming. In fact, it is often seen as something that will redirect your efforts in the right direction.
+ The importance of failure
+ Experience and Knowledge
+ Resilience and Growth
+ Change your strategy
+ Seeking inspiration through others
+ Using failure as leverage
+ Redefining priorities and values
+ Don’t let your failure define you
+ Helps reach your potential
+ Failure is always better than regret
+ Setbacks yield a sense of direction
Do you have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset?
Remember that persons with a fixed mindset tend to plateau early and achieve less than their full potential.
Persons with a growth mindset often reach ever higher levels of achievement.
Keep setting goals- goals of growth!
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To your success,
David C Figueroa- Success Coach
* This post may include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of those links, I may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. I assure you that if I recommend something, it is because I believe it will be of great benefit to you. It took me a heck of a long time to write this post! You wouldn’t want me to go without wine would you!
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David C Figueroa is a psychologist with over 35 years of experience teaching personal development. An awesome success coach, and internet marketer. Now retired, he has refocused his goals into helping ambitious men and women to create exceptional lives.