Are you living in a growth or fixed mindset?

I recently finished reading the book, Mindset, by Carol Dweck. The only books I read these days involve fitness, business, and personal development. I can’t get my hands on enough non-fiction books that I can apply to my every day work and/or personal life. I had a feeling going into this read that it would be a tough one for me personally because it was going to test me and my sometimes stubborn ways. It did not disappoint!

It is no secret and I say it all the time myself…I don’t like to do and try things I am not good at or experienced in. I do not like the feeling of being a beginner or inadequate. I guess growing up most activities I participated in I was fairly good at. Of course I was a hard worker, but I remained interested in the things that I felt more confident and comfortable in. As I have become an adult (even though I still don’t feel like one!), I have realized that I have carried this habit on and it can inhibit my experiences because I am afraid of not succeeding.

My entire family golfs, but I have yet to truly pursue it for fear of not being good. I never felt successful in art class, so I have avoided paint nights at all costs. I have never really tried boxing and although a lot of people rave about it I am hesitant to try, already telling myself it isn’t my thing.

This all stems from a fixed or growth mindset. The entire premise of the book focuses on making a shift from fixed to growth. It is important to remember that it isn’t all or nothing, we can have fixed and growth mindset experiences. I definitely know in some aspects of my life I am keen to learn and grow, while others I am more hesitant.

In a fixed mindset people believe their qualities to be fixed traits, something you either have or you don’t that can’t be changed.

In a growth mindset people believe that their qualities can be changed and improved through the effort and work they put into developing.

Source: Carol Dweck

Source: Carol Dweck

One of my favourite sayings is that your only limit is you. For me it is a matter of thinking I know my own limits and therefore I set myself up to succeed in some things but never progress in others. Upon reading Mindset I realized that it has been holding me back and I am really going to focus moving forward on practicing a more growth mindset in all aspects of my life.

How do I plan to do that?

  • make a list of things I have never tried before and experience them

  • allow myself a few weeks/months before actually making a judgement of my success in the identified activities 

  • set an action plan after experiencing the activities for improving my skills

  • remember it is the process and not the outcome - I don’t have to be the best at everything! I can just do things for fun and focus on getting better!

Do you find yourself ever stuck in a fixed mindset mentality? Let me know what you do to overcome that and move towards a growth mindset.

Yours in self-discovery,