There are two types of mindset; fixed mindset and growth mindset. The kind of mindset you have determines your approach to life and your attitude to success. Your mindset – fixed or growth depends on your beliefs and what you assume about yourself, your character, and your traits. Your opinions and ideas come from your mind’s view of past actions and events.
You create your mindset from a mixture of your genetic heritage and your life experiences. You create your fixed mindset, and you can change it. You have the power to change how you approach life’s challenges, and the attitude you choose can help you achieve all your dreams.
What is a Fixed Mindset?
When you have a fixed mindset, you restrict your potential because of your beliefs. A fixed mindset belief system states that you were handed a selection of character traits and talents as your birthright. But, unlike the growth mindset, you can’t develop your character or improve your abilities. You get the cards fate dealt you, and it is a matter of luck for you to have a winning or a losing hand.
A person with a fixed mindset believes that self-improvement is hopeless, so they never pick up the book or join the class. A fixed mindset keeps you in a box of your own making. But you can break free of the box and change your mindset and live the life that you create.
What is a Growth Mindset?
When you have a growth mindset, you believe in the possibility of change. You think that you can learn, develop, and grow. A growth mindset inspires you to learn new skills and set yourself exciting goals with the energy and willingness to achieve them.
A growth mindset allows you to live a life without limits and to dream the impossible and make it happen. Anyone who desires change has an element of a growth mindset – a seed that you can nurture into changing a fixed mindset into a growth mindset.
How Does a Growth Mindset Help You?
A growth mindset frees you to learn new skills and pursue new interests throughout your whole life. You do not fear new technology because you are confident you can master it. You try new things and understand that failure is a learning experience – without making mistakes, you can’t gain expertise. This mindset reduces anxiety and promotes happiness.
A person with a fixed mindset feels threatened by constructive criticism as a personal attack. Their belief system holds them back from change and development, so a suggestion that they could perform better labels them (in their mind) as a failure.
A healthy growth mindset welcomes feedback from others as a tool for improving their performance. Their positive attitude and willingness to learn can enhance their careers because managers and colleagues are willing to work with them as mentors and supporters.
Developing a growth mindset is an excellent foundation for a healthy and wealthy life filled with excitement and opportunities.
You Can Develop a Growth Mindset
The first step to developing a growth mindset is convincing your mind that you have the power to change your habits. Your habits form your daily routine and arise from your belief system and traits you have developed in your life. Positive affirmations that you accept and welcome change into your life can help prime your mind to work with you in changing your mindset.
You are not the first person to seek to change their mindsets and habits. Others have traveled this journey before you, and you can benefit from their experience. Try changing your habits in the following ways to move towards having that optimistic growth mindset that helps you on the road to success.
Here are 17 ways to overcome fixed mindset;
- Accept Your Weaknesses
- Welcome Challenges
- Work with Your Learning Style
- Celebrate Your Changing Brain
- Be Less Sensitive to Other People’s Opinions
- Love the Journey
- Work with a Purpose
- Settle for Excellence
- Reward Behavior not People
- Love Your Critics
- Get Failure in Perspective
- Capture the Day’s Lessons
- Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
- Be the Best Kind of Stubborn
- Climb Another Mountain
- It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
- Choose to Succeed
Accept Your Weaknesses
What is a weakness? It is different for every individual. Some people find it easy to get out of bed in the morning while others hide under the covers and pretend the day has not arrived. Is that a weakness? Only you know if being unable to get up in the morning is a problem.
There are plenty of behaviors that you have – snacking, doodling, reading before sleeping, and humming while you think. Most habits happen unconsciously, and you might be happy with all of yourself. Or not being able to get out of bed in the morning means you are always rushing to get to work and are often late.
You decide what weaknesses you have and if they are causing you problems. Then you take a strategic approach to minimizing the effect a weakness has on your life. Take the inability to get out of bed when the alarm goes in the morning – accept it as one of your weaknesses.
You know that when the alarm goes off, your natural inclination is to ignore it. How can you change your circumstances and habits? You can try setting the alarm half an hour earlier to allow yourself the gradual wake-up. You can buy a loud alarm and put it at the far end of the room, so you need to get out of bed to switch it off. Or you can set out your clothes, breakfast, and packed lunch the night before so you can get ready in the time you have available in the morning.
Whatever your weakness, you need to accept it and then try out different ways of dealing with the problems it causes you. Be kind to yourself and focus on the desired outcome rather than being critical of your “weakness.”
Challenges are opportunities for growth. Welcome the challenges you face in life because they move you out of your comfort zone and improve your skills. If you want to be a better badminton player, you need to play players who are better than you. There is no challenge in playing a player whose skill level is lower than yours. You may win every game, but you are getting stuck in a rut.
Every day look for opportunities to challenge yourself in small ways like learning a new cooking technique or more significant challenges like aiming for a promotion at work or setting up your own business.
Work with Your Learning Style
You understand information according to your preferred learning style. You may be unaware of what it is, but you will unconsciously express preferences. You may choose diagrams to words or listening to seeing. Alternatively, you may need hands-on experience through practical classes.
Identifying your learning style helps you learn new material efficiently and quickly. Most people have a mix of learning styles, but everyone has strong preferences. You can take an online assessment to identify your learning preferences. Then you learn new skills with an approach that feels natural to you.
Visual learners like images and diagrams – they need to see the information to understand it. Audio learners need to hear the lesson and do best with lectures, audiobooks, and podcasts. Some people need to talk out loud to reinforce ideas – verbal learners.
Others need hands-on experience and muscle memory – kinesthetic learners. Finally, some logical learners need to work it out for themselves. In practice, everyone has a mix of all the learning styles, but some areas are more pronounced than others.
Your learning style is a character trait that you work with, so you get the maximum benefit from your learning experiences.
Celebrate Your Changing Brain
Your brain and your mind are as changeable as the weather, and that is excellent news. That means you are free to grow, develop, and learn for your whole life. You are always open to taking a new path. Keep training your brain and building new connections, so your thought processes stay flexible and adaptable to changing trends and technologies.
Be Less Sensitive to Other People’s Opinions
It is natural to enjoy praise and be hurt by critical opinions. But you need to live your own life and do what is right for you rather than being pushed about by other people’s views on what you should be doing. Always chasing other people’s approval limits your choices to following what somebody else thinks is best for you.
You may want to be a hairdresser and dream of running a salon. Your friends may suggest that you are too intelligent to be a hairdresser and you should be an accountant. Hairdressing and accountancy are both excellent career choices with their pros and cons. If you listen to your friends’ opinion that accountancy is better than hairdressing, you turn away from your dream career to be unhappy in their idea of your best option.
Learn to trust your views and feelings. That way, you can pursue a career that satisfies you and lets you spring out of bed with enthusiasm to start your day.
Love the Journey
Enjoy the process of being open to new ideas, knowledge, and opportunities. A growth mindset enables you to engage with your learning, setting frequent process goals, and being delighted by the unexpected challenges you meet and overcome.
Many successful people are happy when they remember the time they spend in starting their own business, learning new skills, and building their brand. Enjoy the transformation of a fixed mindset to a growth mindset and treasure all the milestones on your unique journey to success.
Work with a Purpose
A meaningful life needs a sense of purpose – why do you do what you do? If your goals are meaningful to you, you will be motivated to keep on working and developing.
Sometimes we work to pay the bills, and that is a worthy goal. But with a sense of purpose, you can pay the bills and still work with a sense of joy and satisfaction, taking pride in delivering a quality job.
Settle for Excellence
Don’t rush the process of learning; take time to embed the knowledge at a deep level. No one learns to drive a car with just one lesson – the skills of maneuvering, paying attention to hazards, and controlling your speed takes repetition and practice.
All learning needs to be applied, yes, you make mistakes, but by using your knowledge, you gain expertise.
Reward Behavior not People
Praising somebody because they are ‘smart’ implies that they possess the fixed quality of being ‘smart.’ What they do does not matter, because they are smart. Caregivers to young children are careful to praise the behavior they want (tidying up the toys) and avoiding labeling the child for silly actions. If a toddler runs out into the road, you explain ‘running into the road is a stupid thing to do.’ You avoid telling the child that they are stupid.
As adults commenting on other adults concentrate on the actions and the effort – that was a remarkable piece of work, not you are fantastic. That leads us on to the next strategy for changing a fixed mindset – feedback.
Love Your Critics
Not all criticism is helpful – you are clumsy, for example, labels the person without offering any hint for improvement. Constructive criticism contains suggestions for improved performance and is vital to your learning. For example – I didn’t enjoy your presentation because I couldn’t hear you at the back of the room. It is critical, but it contains a message for self-improvement. You can change what you do and get better results.
Accept constructive criticism gratefully because someone has taken time to help you. When you offer feedback, remember to focus on how the performance can improve and not on traits.
Get Failure in Perspective
When you get feedback that tells you that you need to improve in some way, that means you get the opportunity to work on improving yourself. It does not mean that you are a failure. You are still on your journey to success, and you’ve encountered some bumps along the way.
People with a growth mindset build the resilience to pick themselves up and start again when they encounter the most severe setbacks – bankruptcy or a life-changing injury. These people take the attitude that any experience is the starting point for a better outcome.
You have the power to choose to get up and try again, no matter how many times you get knocked down. Stay positive and learn from your mistakes because all experience is learning.
Capture the Day’s Lessons
Before going to bed, sit, and reflect on what you have learned so you can absorb that knowledge. You can sit quietly and think or capture your experiences in a journal. After the day’s journey ends, it is an excellent time to review what went well and what might need a new approach.
There may be actions you regret, and now is the time to resolve to fix that problem. Have you spent your time wisely? An evening reflection lets you plan to do better the following day, so you continually refine your methods for achieving success.
Don’t Reinvent the Wheel
There is no need to repeat other people’s mistakes. If someone jumps off a cliff, you are not obliged to do the same. If you see someone has made a mistake, it is an opportunity to avoid making that mistake yourself. We learn the lessons of history, so we don’t make the mistake of repeating them.
Be the Best Kind of Stubborn
We all know someone as stubborn as a mule, with a fixed mindset, refusing to change their mind under any circumstance. That’s not the best kind of stubborn.
The one quality essential for success in any field is the capacity to stick with your goals. You need passion and enthusiasm, but above all, you need a stubborn determination to carry on and persevere despite the challenges. That is the right kind of stubborn or grit required to get the job done.
Climb Another Mountain
Your work hasn’t finished when you have achieved your goal. It is tempting to sit back and rest but set yourself another target, learn something new, and achieve greatness in another field. You can never know everything there is to know, but that shouldn’t stop you from trying.
To stay motivated, interested, and engaged in life, always set yourself new goals and commit to learning every day. You can always find another mountain to climb.
It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Becoming an industry expert or a recognized specialist takes time. You invest the time in learning and growing as an ongoing process. You need time to seek out and try new approaches, work with your habits, take classes, and read. You need to work hard to be an overnight success, so be patient and keep learning.
Choose to Succeed
You have nothing to lose and much to gain by adopting a growth mindset. Our marvelous brains can absorb a massive amount of information, and you can rewire your thinking with a few simple tools. You can plan and work towards your goals with confidence.
What Mindset Do You Want?
You may tend towards a fixed mindset or a growth mindset, but you can always change your mind and adopt successful strategies to change your habits and your attitudes. When you set your goals and are determined to succeed despite obstacles and challenges, you have already moved to a growth mindset.
Believe in yourself and your dreams and then go out and get the tools you need to succeed. Learning and developing is the path of a successful and satisfying life. When you set out on that path with grit and determination, you are your inspiration for success and have left your fixed mindset behind.