Believing in our ability to learn helps us perform better.
People with a ‘Growth Mindset’, that is people who believe their talents can be developed (through work, good strategies or external support), tend to perform better and achieve more than those with a ‘Fixed Mindset’ who believe their talents are innate gifts.
Research has shown that focusing on the potential you have for improving and increasing your skills and abilities, as opposed to fixating on the status quo of your talents, will raise your level of success in the long run.
When we regard both our intelligence and our talents as malleable, we can better accept failures as temporary setbacks, look at problems as opportunities to learn and grow and take criticism more openly. Above all, a growth mindset leads to more perceived control over the course of our own lives which translates directly to more intentional decision making and action.
Some of the hard science behind why a Growth Mindset is actually in line with reality (i.e. you actually can develop your physical and mental qualities to a tremendous degree) is the science of neuroplasticity.
“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed no hope at all.”
— Dale Carnegie
“It’s not that I’m so smart. It’s just that I stay with problems longer.”
— Albert Einstein
“You’re in charge of your mind. You can help it grow by using it in the right way.”
— Carol S. Dweck
- 📝 Read this hbr article by Growth Mindset researcher Carol Dweck about its fundamentals.
- 🎥 Check out this 5 min. animated video about the differences between a Growth Mindset and a Fixed Mindset.
A few further resources you might like if you find above idea interesting:
- 📚 Carol Dweck’s Mindset: The New Psychology of Success
- 📚 Barbara Oakley’s A Mind for Numbers: How to Excel at Math and Science
- 🖥 Skillshare (Online Learning Platform)
- 🖥 Masterclass (Online Learning Platform)
- 🎥 Crash Course (YouTube channel)