By Michelle Post
What did you learn today? What mistake did you make that taught you something? What did you try hard at today? ~ Carol S. Dweck
A growth mindset is key to personal and professional success. This has been proven by Dr. Carol S. Dweck in her bestselling book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.” In this month’s Business Bytes, I want to discuss what a growth mindset is, why it is critical to your success, and most importantly how to develop it.
Before I explain what a growth mindset is, I think it is important to put meaning to the opposite – a fixed mindset. When a person holds the belief that their talents or intelligence are simply given traits, they focus on chronicling them instead of developing them. They may rest on their laurels, believing that their talent alone creates success; or, they may lack confidence believing they do not have the power to create their own favorable outcome. There is very little room for personal development or an enthusiasm about learning with such a fixed belief system. In contrast, a growth mindset is one focused on diligence and hard work, understanding that intellect is only a building block for success. This outlook creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for accomplishing great things, according to Dweck.
Henry Ford said, “If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.” Developing a growth mindset is not just saying to yourself repeatedly, “I know I can, I know I can.” Instead, it is a belief in you and your abilities. The more you know about yourself – your personality, values, strengths and weaknesses, passion and purpose, the easier it is to develop a growth mindset. Using a growth mindset in business allows you to see new opportunities where you may not have seen them before. A growth mindset lets you change your internal monologue, which in turn allows you to replace fixed thoughts with growth thoughts.
Developing a growth mindset does take work, but let me assure you it is worth it. Here are just a few ways to develop a growth mindset:
1. Embrace your imperfections
2. See opportunities instead of problems
3. Learn to develop GRIT (guts, resilience, initiative & tenacity)
4. Learn something new each day, no matter how small
5. Re-frame failure as a new learning experience
6. Take time to reflect daily
7. Learn from others
Who you are matters, and what you do matters; therefore, let yourself embrace a growth mindset and watch what it can do for you, your business, and your relationships.
Check out these resources for more learning opportunities in developing a growth mindset:
Book: “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success,” by Dr. Carol Dweck
Ted Talk (Video): www.ted.com/talks/carol_dweck_the_power_of_believing_that_you_can_improve
Blog: Briggs, Sarah - 25 Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset - www.opencolleges.edu.au/informed/motivation/develop-a-growth-mindset/
Book: “GRIT to Great,” by Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval
Dr. Michelle Post is a social media strategist, connector, and inspirational speaker. She joined The Connection staff to help others to learn how to release their internal gifts for personal and professional success. Monthly, we will feature “Business Bytes” to help you gain insight and succeed in business.