Three Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset

Your attitude determines your success. The right attitude can open new doors for you, while the wrong attitude can shut them down right in your face.

Your attitude determines your days, your connections and friendships, your personal and professional success and, even, your failure.

Someone with the right attitude and state of mind, lights up a room and can change other people’s days and lives.

John C. Maxwell said,

People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.

Well said!

How many times you’ve been to your favorite Starbucks shop and got back filled with positive energy from talking with an enthusiastic barista?

Now think about how many times you let the negative energy of a colleague who always has a reason to complain ruin your day?

In both cases, it wasn’t because what they said, but about how they said it. You felt their attitude and it affected you.

Fixed vs. Growth Mindset

One of the best research psychologists, Carol Dweck, spent her entire career studying attitude and performance.

In her latest study she found that your attitude predicts your success better than your IQ.

What?!?

She found people’s attitudes are either a fixed mindset or a growth mindset.

What does this mean?

People with a fixed mindset think they cannot change who they are, refusing to challenge themselves. Therefore every time they encounter a challenge, they feel hopeless, overwhelmed, and stressed.

On the other hand, their counter parts with a growth set of mind see challenges as a means to improve themselves. They embrace change and challenges, they see them as opportunities to grow.

They outperform those with a fixed mindset even if their IQ is lower.

Why?

Because what they lack in IQ, they substitute with effort.

Now, that’s something to think about every time you start whining of not being able to do this or that.

You too can develop a growth mindset. It’s only up to you.

How to Develop a Growth Mindset

  • Be relentless. We have so many examples of people who simply refused to give up despite failure after failure. From Steve Jobs being fired from his own company, to Walt Disney being fired because he “lacked imagination,” to Gini Dietrich who didn’t hide when there was no money left in the bank account. No, she regrouped and found a better solution, hence Arment Dietrich today and Spin Sucks. Bottom line is believe in yourself no matter what. Believe in your work and never give up no matter how many times you fall. Get up in the ring again. Remember, you write your own history.
  • Go do it. It’s fine to read motivational books and to listen to hundreds of hours of podcasts. But without action they are worthless. You know how you over exercise and the next day your body hurts all over the place (hello squats)? But, as soon as you start walking, it gets easier and easier, and in no time you feel like yourself again, only you feel better and more powerful. That’s how people with a growth mindset act when they face failure, uncertainty, and challenges. They embrace them and take action. Oh, did I mention that the more you do it, the easier it becomes, and you feel like a winner? Well, that too!
  • Be consistent. Now all this sounds great, but it has no value if you don’t do it every single day. Challenge yourself every day and make a conscious effort to be a little better than you were the day before. Keep an open mind and adapt when challenges come your way. It will help you find solutions where others only see problems.

The Compound Effect

Remember the compound effect and make a deal with yourself to have the right attitude and state of mind every day, no matter what life throws at you.

Take small daily steps that bring you closer to your personal and professional goals.

And forget the naysayers and complainers. Have you seen a naysayer successful at anything other than complaining?

Me neither.

Focus, take action, and be consistent.

Now, if the above doesn’t convince you, think about what Herm Albright said

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.

Isn’t your day suddenly brighter?

A version of this article originally ran on Spin Sucks.