The phrase growth mindset is often thrown around yet the essence of the phrase is not always understood. So what is growth mindset?
What really is growth mindset?
The best way I can describe this is through a concept Simon Sinek introduced called
"the infinite game".
Where productivity and goal setting should not be directed towards just reaching certain goals but going beyond them and never reaching a point where you say to yourself
"if I achieve x I'll be happy"
because there is so much more that can be achieved and the only reason we believe we cannot go beyond that is because of our own hesitation and lack of self-belief.
The infinite game and growth mindset have one major thing in common which is the attitude to keep going, keep learning and keep growing. When you have a growth mindset you automatically start playing an infinite game and that's why it is crucial for leaders to start transforming their mindset to this.
A growth mindset means that you constantly look for improvement and do not let anything get in the way of what you want to achieve. You look for new ways to overcome your challenges and you're always trying to learn more and better yourself.
A fixed mindset is very rigid and is not flexible in its way of thinking. A fixed mindset does not allow any room for growth as challenges and failure are not welcome or taken positively. It is also very closed off and does not let the individual explore their opportunities or go out of their comfort zone.
A fixed mindset really limits all that an individual could achieve and can have detrimental effects on the organisation they are leading too. If the leader in an organisation has a fixed mindset the negative effects on the organisation could be that the organisation more or less stays the same and they don't try new ways to improve their ways of working and hence the company growth could be hindered. A fixed mindset would also cause other staff in the company to take challenges and feedback negatively and this could cause their individual performance to remain stagnant or worsen and possibly ruin relationships within the organisation.
However, with a growth mindset, the company can grow further as the leader and the employees are looking to improve and grow and hence take feedback well so that they can be better from it and improve their own performance which allows the company's performance to improve too. Furthermore, if the company is open to trying new ways to do things they can learn more about their organisation's culture and their customers and how they react to them. Through trial and error, they may find a new way that really helps them profit more and hence their business becomes more successful.
1) Recognise what kind of mindset you currently have and identify why it is like that. For example, if you generally take feedback as personal criticism you have to ask yourself why you do so.
2) Rationalise the belief that you have and ask yourself whether that behaviour is healthy for you and your work or not. eg. is the thought process of me believing that my boss is criticising me when he/she is actually giving me tips to improve healthy and rational? or am I taking it the wrong way?
3) Reset yourself when you catch yourself giving into that behaviour. eg. next time your boss gives you feedback and you see yourself processing it as criticism, stop yourself and correct yourself! This can be done by reminding yourself that it is only for your improvement so that you see it as a more positive thing.
4) Reward yourself when you do the behaviour that takes you closer to a growth mindset so that you do it more. eg. when you take the feedback positively reward yourself with your favourite candy!
While these are a couple of ways to work on creating a growth mindset, another thing that can help, is the content you consume. If you listen to inspirational content such as Ted Talks it will help you grow your mind or if you read stories of how people have transformed their mindsets it can help you see the possibilities and open yourself up to new opportunities. Furthermore, here at Petadiri we have worked with several company leaders and their staff to help them grow from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset through the growth mindset modules in our courses. By enrolling in such, you will be able to learn from professionals on how to conquer your mind through trained leadership coaches.
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