Updated: Jan 27, 2020
Mindset is something we hear a lot about in today's world. Things like meditation, yoga, and mindfulness have made controlling one's thoughts more mainstream than ever before. Changing and controlling your mindset takes lots and lots of time and work. You'll need to develop patience and the skill for identifying your negative thoughts and flipping them into positive ones.
In a fixed mindset one believes that qualities are fixed and cannot be changed. The belief that we are born with certain skills or talents and cannot develop more. When we have a fixed mindset we are less tolerant of criticism and challenges. We tend to give up easily and get frustrated when learning new things. A fixed mindset tells us that it is pointless to put effort into new skills because we don't already possess them and therefore cannot attain them. The fixed mindset is a liar.
Growth mindset is the opposite of a fixed mindset. Growth mindset is the belief that new skills and traits can be gained and improved over time. Those who have a growth mindset believe that they can learn from failures and embrace challenges and see criticism as constructive feedback. Growth mindset tells us that success can be obtained even if we lack skills and experience; we can learn!
Steps to take you from a Fixed mindset to a Growth Mindset
How do we go about transforming our mindset? There is not a one size fits all answer. As with anything, you'll have to find what works best for you. We do have a couple of suggestions to get you on the right track!
1. Replace negative thoughts/attitudes with positive affirmations.
This is easier said than done, we know, but with discipline and practice you won't even have to consciously focus on it after a while.
When you catch yourself thinking:
"It's too hard."
"I'm not smart enough."
"That was a dumb mistake."
"I don't care."
"It's good enough."
Replace those thoughts with things like:
"I can do hard things!"
"I won't give up!"
"I'm getting smarter everyday."
"Mistakes help me grow."
"I want to learn!"
"I want to do my best work."
After some practice, your thoughts will become these positive affirmations instead of the negative self talk we so often give to ourselves.
2. Practice Gratitude
There are numerous things to be thankful for every single day, and even more ways to practice gratitude. You can even turn those negative thoughts into grateful affirmations.
"I have to go to work."
"I have to go workout."
"My home is a mess."
Practice gratitude by rephrasing"
"I get to go to work." or"I am grateful to have a job."
"I get to workout because my body is able."
"I am grateful to have a comfortable home to live in."
Other ways to practice gratitude include:
Journaling - at the end of the day write down everything good that happened that day.
Thanking those who help you in your daily life.
Giving Back - Volunteering to help those in need.
Paying it forward next time you are in the drive thru line by paying for the customer behind you.
This list is not exhaustive, there are plenty of ways to practice gratitude in our daily lives. Being grateful for what you do have can help you change your mindset to see situations in a more positive light. Positivity will enable growth mindset.
3. Pay attention to the details.
What does this last one mean? There are most likely tiny pieces of your day that bring you positive feeling like comfort, joy, or happiness. When you experience something in your day-to-day pay attention to how it makes you feel.
If it brings you positive emotions, try to take notice of it everyday. You can also try to replicate it. For example, if relaxing in a made bed at the end of the day is your favorite thing. Make it a point everyday to make your bed so that when you get home you can relax and feel the joy that it brings you. If you absolutely love candles, buy yourself candles and light them when you feel like it!
Give yourself these positive feelings. You can make them happen for yourself! YOU can be the positivity in your own life.
Trust The Process
All of these things have 1 thing in common - discipline. But if you have the discipline to implement any of these steps you will be well on your way to developing a Growth Mindset and leaving a Fixed Mindset behind. Your mindset determines your success. Growth Mindset will allow you to achieve the success you seek, but you have to trust the process.