10 Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset

In my mid-twenties I had no connections, no money, no place to live no information on how to get me from where I was to where I am now. However, I had 2 things, my faith in God and a growth mindset.


What Is Growth Mindset?


A growth mindset is the belief that your basic abilities can be developed and improved through dedication and hard work. It is not a magical belief, without a growth mindset, you would not exert the required effort and you will remain perpetually stuck. With a growth mindset, you can break through from being stuck and achieve the results you desire, whether that be at work, in relationships, or in other aspects of your life.


Do You Have A Growth Mindset or a Fixed Mindset?


Do you believe that you were born and raised with a fixed set of skills and abilities? Or, do you believe that your ideas and beliefs are ever growing and progressing? You can learn new skills if you work at it, and you grow with each new experience. If you said “yes” to the first question, you have what is referred to as a “fixed mindset.” If you said “yes” to the second question, you have what is called a growth mindset. Not to worry, if you have more of a fixed mindset, you can develop a growth mindset.


If you have a fixed mindset, you may shy away from challenges because you do not want to feel embarrassed or humiliated in front of others. Who does? This can be problematic because the fear of making mistakes can lead you to avoid challenges and new experiences which would help you grow and improve yourself.


If you have a growth mindset, you enjoy challenges, despite the risk, usually because you value learning and growth more than others thinking you know what you are doing. You are always trying new things, even when you often do not know what you are doing. Those with a growth mindset often build new skills more easily because they believe they can, and they really work at it.


Differences Between Fixed and Growth Mindset


A fixed mindset person shies away from challenges, possibly from fear of failure and may go into hiding to avoid responsibilities. In contrast, the growth mindset person finds challenges to be exciting and engaging, knowing that they will learn something valuable from their experiences. They stick to it, mastering the challenge.


The fixed mindset person hates making mistakes because it is embarrassing. They may blame others or be defensive when criticized. Meanwhile, a growth mindset person will see the mistake as a lesson to learn from and will be less likely to take criticism personally. Being open to criticism can help improve one’s ability to do better the next time, which is another reason why a growth mindset can lead to success.


Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset

1. Acknowledge and embrace your imperfections. We all have flaws and imperfections. That person with the gap in their teeth, it the imperfection makes them unique.


2. Face your challenges bravely. If you find yourself terrified in the face of a serious challenge, stop, and re-frame the situation in your mind. Consider your challenge as an opportunity, thereby slightly shifting your perspective to make it easier for you to engage. Each challenge or opportunity invites you into a new experience. Fear is an acceptable feeling; press forward anyway and discover abilities you did not know you even possessed.


3. Pay attention to your words and thoughts. Pay attention to the words you speak, even the words in your mind. Listen to what you are saying and thinking. Censor yourself and become your own guide. Replace negative thoughts with positive ones. Replace judgment with acceptance, hate with compassion. Be intentional to think higher thoughts and hold yourself to it.


4. Stop seeking approval from others. Approval from others can often prevent a growth mindset. Learn to trust yourself. You are the only person who will always be there for you, so you are the only one you need to impress.


5. Cultivate a sense of purpose. Does your life feel like it is purpose-driven? If yes, define for yourself what that purpose is. If you are drawing a blank, ask that your life’s purpose become clear to you. Pray and meditate on purpose and see what tidbits come through until you feel like you know the essence of your purpose, or perhaps part of it. Then pursue it.


6. Redefine perfection. We all have strengths and weaknesses. Appreciate your strengths, and work to improve your weaknesses.


7. Turn criticism around until you find its gift. The purpose of criticism is to make things better. Someone else can see what you are doing from a slightly different perspective than you and may have some valuable suggestions for you. If you are open to hearing suggestions, you can more easily develop your growth mindset.


8. Learn from the mistakes of others. If you can learn from the mistakes of others, then you may be able to make fewer mistakes.


9. “Not yet” is OK. When struggling with a task, remind yourself that you just have not mastered it “yet.” If you stick with it, time and practice will lead to improvement.


10. Take risks in the company of others. Try not to take yourself too seriously. Be willing to make mistakes in front of others, because if you are growing, this is bound to happen.


Think about this. Growth mindset means one sees failure as an opportunity to grow, embraces challenges, persists in the face of setbacks, is open to feedback, takes responsibility for their words and actions, and acknowledges that effort is the path toward mastery.


Practice makes perfect. By choosing to make the extra effort to build a growth mindset, you can make your mental processes work for you, resulting in a greater likelihood that you get the results you are looking for.


Download free worksheet to help you develop a Growth Mindset https://bit.ly/3dmleBU


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© 2013 Beverley J. Miller- SOAR EMPOWERMENT