If you ever want to grow your chances of success, you need to grow your mindset.
This is something that I learned when I first started my self improvement journey. This is what led me to become a writer and generating enough money to support myself financially.
A growth mindset.
Before all of this, I was someone who didn’t know where to go in life, pursuing a career in accounting and eventually becoming a sales rep for a credit card company. Even though I was going somewhere with my life, I felt stuck.
After work, I felt drained and lounged around with no vision or ambition for anything.
But deep down, I had that mindset and when I got serious and started to work on my business, it bloomed into what it is today.
Whether you have a direction in life or not, growing and changing is part of our course. If we can’t learn to grow or be open to change, we can’t advance.
This is a concept people fail to understand as so many of us resist change or generally feel stuck and are unsure what to do. This isn’t to say a growth mindset is the only thing you ever need, but to find any success, this is the way to grow your mindset.
What Is A Growth Mindset
Carol Dweck explained what a growth mindset is in 2014 in the TED talk “The Power Of Believing That You Can Improve.”
In the video she explained what a growth mindset is:
“A growth mindset is when students understand that their abilities can be developed,”
But merely understanding that we’re capable of growth isn’t entirely what a growth mindset is all about. While knowing is one thing, over the years, self improvement writers and life coaches have taken it a step further.
For myself, I feel that a growth mindset, in essence, is knowing that our abilities can be developed, but then taking action to build on them. To learn more about them.
There’s nothing magical or mysterious about it. In fact, a growth mindset can be developed through these simple steps below.
Step 1 Acknowledge Flaws And Embrace Them
Not only in ourselves but in others. As mentioned above, growth begins when we recognize that nothing is perfect and can be improved. But this step stretches that idea a bit further.
Because as I’m sure you know, we don’t have one flaw. There are a number of flaws that we have.
Maybe you overthink and procrastinate a lot?
Maybe you have self-esteem issues?
Or we struggle to learn a certain way or perform a certain task in general.
The number of flaws we have are endless but they are only flaws if they are things we want to improve on. Recognizing we have several flaws can suggest that we have much to learn in various aspects of our lives.
Our relationships, our social behaviour, our skills and abilities.
Embracing this begins the learning process for ourselves.
Step 2 Develop A System Of Growth
To grow your mindset, you’re going to need some form of action after that. When we recognize a problem, we make an effort to fix it and change it.
Despite me being in business since 2015, I only started to get serious about my writing business by 2017. What happened during that time was due to the fact I lacked a system to develop myself.
I recognized for a long time that I was stuck and that I wasn’t going anywhere. What changed that was by buckling down and giving myself challenges and setting up a system I still use today.
Setting up a system I feel is the best sort of approach to having a growth mindset because it’s all action. And having a system will keep you more on track than trying to develop a single habit.
Think about it.
A routine isn’t one habit. It’s a series of habits that form our ritual or system. If we want to have a great day, we go through a combination of habits that help us get the most out of our day.
With this in mind, what I suggest is to work on a series of habits to help you grow. Here are some suggestions for habits that you can develop. Select several and practice them on the regular. These can form the basis of your system:
- Clean yourself up (Take a shower, groom yourself, wear some nice clothes you feel good in.)
- Enhance productivity (Set targets for work, break tasks into a to-do list)
- Energize yourself (Get to bed early, reduce intake of blue light, eat breakfast.)
On top of that system there are all kinds of ways to reinforce these as well. Because as much as we run on systems, we can’t instinctively do them on command. Like any habit, repetition is what’s going to make things stick.
So some ways to reinforce these systems are things like:
- Setting up a goal system to give yourself a bigger picture. You can narrow it down further into a to-do list that you want to complete every day.
- Practice memory reconsolidation. It’s the idea of practicing something and then changing the action subtly while still yielding the same results. For example to do better tennis serves, practice your serve 20 or so times. Then do the same 20 serves, but loosen the tension on your racket ever so slightly.
Whatever the case is, practice makes perfect as they say.
Step 3 Analyze Internal Dialogue
What we say plays a massive factor in our attitude and motivation as well. It’s one way for us to learn about ourselves, but it’s also a way to grow ourselves.
When we learn to set aside our negativity, we can begin to use our internal dialogue to discover problems.
To see this in action let me share with you my problem-solving system.
Whenever I feel bothered by something, or I need time to reflect, I go for a walk. During that time I think and talk out loud about whatever is on my mind. I jump from tangent to tangent. But during that time, I also pay attention to various themes.
When I struggled to get my business off the ground, the most common theme that came up was of course money. And while that certainly dragged my emotions down, I started to gain hope when I recognized that thought process.
Instead of moping about it, I moved to the next step to this system: setting goals and motivating myself to work towards them.
I went and applied myself to be a freelancer on Upwork. I went out and applied for work on that platform like crazy. And when I landed a job, I worked as hard as I could to make sure the work was great.
To grow your mindset, pay attention to what you are thinking. Sometimes you’ll find problems in there you can handle which give you direction and purpose.
Step 4 Create A Path Forward
To grow your mindset, you need a path. And while everything up to this point helps carve it, you’ll need to find a way to spring into action and to start walking that path. In order to do that, there has to be a higher sense of being to propel you forward.
So how do we find it?
Well, there are all kinds of ways.
One method is finding a sense of purpose. Knowing your problems and knowing yourself is one thing. But it’s another to know why these things are important to you in the first place.
We don’t simply do things for the sake of doing it. There is normally a reason – positive or negative – for us to do something.
Another method is setting yourself higher challenges. Even if you don’t achieve them, setting the bar higher can push you to grow further in one particular area.
Other forms of moving forward is finding sources of motivation and energy. Examples are some of the suggestions I made above or even finding a why for when you set a goal.
Step 5 Reflect, Adjust, And Use Feedback
For you to grow your mindset, one other aspect is to change your attitude towards failure and mistakes. For someone who is growing their mindset, you need to see failure as a way of growing yourself further.
Mistakes and failures are stepping stones to your growth and success. As such, you want to spend time deliberately reflecting on past progress and consider other areas to improve.
Or maybe you’ve hit a plateau recently and everything is going smoothly. It’s during those times where you reflect and consider what other ways you can challenge yourself and grow more.
All in all the final step to growing yourself is giving yourself feedback and looking for more ways to be improving yourself. After all, we are always work in processes.
Grow Your Mindset And Succeed
Growing your mindset takes time, energy and reflection. But putting in the time now will help with a growth-oriented mindset which can be used in a variety of fashions. From putting new perspectives to situations to critical thinking, growing your mindset comes with distinct advantages you don’t want to pass up.
To your growth!
Eric S Burdon