The Mindset for Success
- Mar 18, 2015
What is that unique thing in humans that sets them apart from all other species on the planet? Well, it is the power of their mind. Believe it or not, the human mind is blessed with enormous potential. The potential to make the impossible, possible. The potential to succeed against all odds, and reach for the stars! All that is required is the will to succeed.
This reminds me of the words of the retired American baseball player, Roger Clemens who said that nothing is impossible if one has the desire to do it and invests his time in making it possible. That’s true. It all depends on your ‘mindset’.
What is Mindset?
Let us understand what actually is meant by the term ‘mindset’. Carol Dweck, a Stanford psychologist has presented an amazing explanation about what mindset is all about in her book ‘Mindset: The New Psychology of Success’. The book is enriched with Dweck’s comprehensive research on the adaptability of the mind and its impact on one’s personal goals. It speaks about the strength of our belief systems and how they can be modified so that it takes us one step closer to the doors of success. You would find that this psychologist has classified mindset into two distinct faculties: ‘fixed mindset’ and ‘growth mindset’.
Fixed Mindset: As the term suggests, a fixed mindset is characterized by static forms of self-belief, judgment and intelligence. Carol’s research has stated that people with fixed mentality associate failure with an inferior level of innate intelligence. Similarly, they firmly believe that talent is crucial to achieving success in any field. In addition, such people are more prone to losing hope and giving up simply because they fear society’s disapproval of their failures. They make the best attempts to avoid failure to maintain their impression of being smart individuals.
Growth Mindset: On the other hand, a growth mindset is a marked contrast to the fixed mindset and prefers flourishing in the face of challenges. It embraces failures as pillars of success and transforms them into a fierce motivation to excel in all endeavors. In other words, persons with a growth mindset manipulate the disappointment triggered by failure into a driving force that eventually enables them to succeed in accomplishing their aims. People with growth mindset keep inspiring themselves to pour in the best of their abilities through diligence and hard work, enjoying the process of learning.
What kind of a mindset must you choose?
Tell me friends, what kind of a mindset would be appropriate for you? Answer a few questions first. Did you wish you loved studies? Do you actually enjoy learning? How often have you patted your back and congratulated yourself for a minor achievement, such as getting good grades in your recent Math class test?
Whether your answer to these questions is a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’, you definitely require a growth mindset for healthy survival, if you wish to smile away all your blues. The best thing about developing a growth mindset is that your life begins to shine brightly with an aura of positive energy. Gradually, this flow of positive energy makes its presence felt through your daily activities like studying, playing and, all other forms of social interaction. Your relationships improve, along with your relationship with one another, and most importantly, with yourself.
How can Kids Develop Growth Strategy?
Now, let us see how kids can be encouraged to inculcate a growth mindset into their belief systems. Parents must follow certain measures to make sure that children start developing an optimistic outlook towards everything in their lives.
- Discuss daily: Try to discuss about how your child has spent the entire day at the dinner table. You can also do this before your kids retire for the day. It would be a good idea to ask them about what they have learnt at school. When your child shares about his experiences, don’t forget to hug him and appreciate his work. And when you discover that your child struggled through his Math period, tell them how you admire the way they continued trying.
- Praise wisely: I have come across some parents who love complimenting their children on their physical appearance and smartness. However, research says that doing so might make them more conscious about how they look, walk or wear an attire. Moreover, they might also lose their self-confidence. Instead, notice how they deal with challenges such as preparing for their board exams or meeting an important deadline, including that of a project submission. If they have scored well in their exams despite having a tricky syllabus to deal with, congratulate them.
- Inspire them: Kids love learning about new and amazing things, so why not amaze them once in a while? Most children love watching superhero characters on the television such as ‘Spiderman’, ‘Batman’ and much more. Convince them about the superhuman strength of the brain and tell them how brains can indeed grow stronger. You can explain your kids how an element known as brain plasticity helps improve one’s intelligence and brain functioning. I’m sure your children would absolutely love to hear that.
- Encourage failures: For success to follow, it is essential for you to welcome every failure that comes your way. For instance, if you didn’t motivate yourself to study hard before your exams, low grades in a subject are inevitable. This failure would immediately motivate you to start studying seriously for your next terminal examinations.
- Teach the essence of positivity: Positive attitude is not built in a day. It takes practice and a great deal of determination to get rid of all kinds of negative self-talk that threatens to hurt your confidence. So, the first step to being positive irrespective of your circumstances actually starts right from your home. Whenever you child expresses his uncertainty in answering a particular question in any subject, show him the positive side of it. For example, if your kid exclaims that Math is the toughest subject, tell him that he is intelligent enough to conquer that tough subject.
A growth mindset is an essential requisite for each and every human being, and blessed are the souls who have been capable of adopting such a mature mindset. From today onwards, promise yourself that you would only prioritize positive feelings and thoughts and discover a new life waiting to embrace you!
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