A growth mindset is a general theory that states that a mind consists of a set of assumptions, methods or notions held by an individual or a group of people. Studies have found that there are two types of mindset; the fixed mindset and the growth mindset. The following article will dive deep into explaining the distinctions between a growth mindset and a fixed mindset. It will then move to see how these two sets of mindset are applied to help the youth to become more knowledgeable and sustainable.
World-renowned psychologist Dr Carol Dweck says (it’s) the belief that our character, personality and intelligence are all things one is born with and cannot change as it is set in stone. For example, a person who believes they have to be the best at what they do drives their need to be successful, that not being at the top will be seen as a failure and thus be a stint on their image. For example, a child who isn’t encouraged from an early age at home will be less reluctant to try and participate at school for fear of being wrong and being laughed at by their peers. They would see the wrong answer as a dead-end to their learning and not as another step added to the ladder of intelligence.
With this mindset, an individual excels on challenges and sees failure as a lesson rather than a measure of one’s intelligence or mental capabilities. For example, a figure skater will see their inability to execute a certain move as a push to try harder and not as a sign of inadequacy.
There are three highlighted differences between the types of mindset. Let us list them out:
- Effort – an individual with a growth mindset will see a task as an opportunity to learn. The only way to achieve that would be through the 2 P’s, passion and perseverance. On the other hand, the individual with a fixed mindset will prefer to delegate the more difficult parts of the task to another. In that way, they focus only on the easy and minimal work.
- Challenge – the individual with a fixed mindset will most likely not want to engage in new challenges because of the fear of failing. An individual who possesses a growth mindset will more likely find it appealing and exciting to take on something new and willing to master it through trial and error.
- Mistakes and feedback – an individual with a fixed mindset will see criticism as a personal attack and feels embarrassed about errors. In contrast, an individual with a growth mindset will welcome the feedback as it is, whether good or bad and give insights on their success or failure of the task. To that particular individual, the feedback seen as a push in the right direction.
My thoughts and views on this topic? I think a growth mindset is a spectacular way of leading your life and should be encouraged from an early age. In the society that we live in today, encouragement is a necessity no matter how great or small the accomplishment. Encouraging students from an early age makes them feel free, comfortable and relaxed in their environment. Although I do understand that not everyone will be able to develop this kind of forward-thinking, since fixed is rigid, it would be beneficial in boosting productivity. Within Culturelligence, openness is a factor and that in itself promotes the growth mindset.
As youth, we can gain knowledge on this matter quite easily. Technology is now a way of life and has become the new normal of our era. An individual can log on to the internet and find books, webinars, and so forth to get involved in things. But at the end of the day, it starts from a young age for our schooling system to encourage openness amongst fellow students and teachers. In that manner, it would be a lot easier for the children to adopt the growth mindset.
Although, the majority of the youth may not acknowledge nor be aware of the types of mindset. However, they still acknowledge the mind as a secret tool to success. They acknowledge the capabilities of their mind and work around them for better understanding and change their lives for the better and reach back to others to raise awareness about mental capabilities as technology has become a big part of our existence and a way to connect with the world. A simple Tweet or Facebook post can reach a large number of people and call them to the action of getting to know about the types of mindset and which one they fall under.
I have come to acknowledge that I have a growth mindset and tend to look at the glass as half-full rather than half-empty. I am an HR graduate with several certificates, hard-working, and a quick learner. But it seems when coming to looking for a job in the real world isn’t the easiest thing to do. I have had so many doors closed in my face and have received so many “unfortunately you are not the right fit for the position” emails. It is discouraging, I must say. But having the growth mindset forces me to keep looking with the hope of something happening. It is said stupidity is doing the same thing over and over again and expect different results. Well, that is not how I live my life. I live my life with a mindset that doing the same thing repeatedly enhances the end results. It is a very fine line to walk, where one should be careful when on that path. I guess in my case, it was intelligence since my persistence and optimism paid off at the end of the day.
Finally, mentality is not a group of stones. It can be easily modified and developed through small constraints and steps. With that belief, change in life is important that a person has to evolve to keep pace with the changes happening in the world around them.