The way we live our lives and the way we see the world starts with our brain and our thinking. As a result, our mindset could be one of the key factors influencing our happiness and growth. Carol Dweck calls it a Growth Mindset and Heidi Halvorson call it the “Get Better” Mindset. No matter the name, its influence on our lives is tremendous.
So what is Mindset? The dictionary definition says its “the established set of attitudes held by someone”. Carol Dweck describes two sets of mindset, a fixed and a growth mindset. A fixed mindset is when “people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time document their intelligence or talent instead of developing them”.
On the other had a growth mindset is when “people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work – brains and talent are just he starting point”. Get the more in depth reading on Carol Dweck’s growth mindset concept here: mindsetonline.com.
To illustrate this better here’s a summary graphic created by Nigel Holmes:
Similarly to Carol Dweck, researcher Heidi Grant Halvorson talks about the Get Better mindset vs a Be Good mindset. In her 99u talk “The Incredible Benefits of a Get Better Mindset“, Heidi explains that we should avoid a Be Good mindset “one where we are constantly attempting to prove our superiority to the world. Instead, we should embrace a Get Better mindset where we always perceive ourselves as having more to learn. When we embrace a Get Better Mindset, we embrace risk and are less afraid of failure, which is key to personal development.” So simple and yet so powerful.
What I’ve learned from these two thought leaders is that if we embrace continuous development and growth, if we put the conscious effort to learn more every day, we will be able to change our attitudes and adopt a mindset that will set us up for long term success and happiness. It makes sense, sounds easy but its very complicated in reality. It requires hard work and strong will to stay focused and not give in to an inherent ability to easily revert back to Fixed Mindset.