Carol Dweck has coined a new set of terms that are spreading in popularity because of the message behind them. In her book, she breaks down the ways that you can adjust your mindset in order to bring about the best possible outcome for your future. She believes that one of the most relevant approaches to finding your way to success includes focusing on how you manage failure and mistakes. Grappling with failure is something that everyone has to face, but according to Dweck, you can either let it define you or grow from it.
The two primary mindsets detailed by Dweck are a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. People with a fixed mindset are prone to thinking that failure or mistakes are defining moments. They are more likely to focus on the idea that these mistakes are their limitations, and that they cannot actually extend beyond that failure. However, a growth mindset treats mistakes like opportunities. This mindset compels people to accept their mistakes, reflect on them in a productive way, and learn from them in a way that allows them to truly grow from the experience.
When you have one of these mindsets, it will impact the way that you look at the world around you. With a fixed mindset, you don’t see the world for all of the opportunities that it harbors. It will lead you to back down from challenges and shy away from your own potential success because there will be moments when you just don’t quite get it right the first time around. On the other hand, with a growth mindset, you will see new challenges as a way to learn and grow whether you have managed to rise to the occasion or not. This simple change in mindset will help you to see the world as a place of opportunity and personal development rather than on a stage where you will potentially fail.
The best way to improve the dynamic around you is to encourage other people near you to embrace the growth mindset. Instead of being surrounded by peers who will feel threatened by failure and refuse to think outside of the box, you can encourage the people around you to try new things and celebrate them for doing so. This level of support can go a long way when it comes to helping those around you to learn how to embrace this freeing mindset.
The face of the matter is that we should and will face challenges that will seem to be too much for us. We will eventually fail or not have complete success. We might even look silly doing so. That doesn’t change the fact that failure is a stepping stone on the way to doing something better. As long as you are willing to take it as a learning opportunity, you might just be amazed by how much you can learn from failing. It might feel bad in the moment, but it is good in the long run. So wake up at 5 am, it's not easy but set yourself the challenge and make the best out of every day.