Updated: Nov 11, 2020
Have you ever had a thought pop into your head like, "I would love to be able to do this", then immediately you tell yourself, "There's no way I could do that, I'm not (fill in blank) enough"?
For me, it was about writing. My dad always told me I should write a book. Even as a good student and avid reader, I would always say, "I'm not good enough to write a book, some people are just more talented than others."
You ever have this mindset? The "I'm not good enough" mindset?
See, a mindset is our beliefs about our own qualities, like intelligence and personality. There are two types of mindsets: fixed mindset and growth mindset (1).
A fixed mindset is a limiting mindset. We believe that our qualities can't change (1).
In my example, I believe that I wasn't a good enough writer because I lacked the talent required to write a book. I had a fixed mindset, believing that that quality in me would never change.
But now look at me, I'm writing a blog!
A growth mindset is the idea that we are always growing and have the ability to change (1).
With a growth mindset, individuals don't see failures as lack of talent, failure is viewed as a lack of effort (1).
Why do we need to adopt growth mindsets?
Individuals with growth mindsets views themselves as "works in progress" and are always attempting to learn more (1). In addition, it has been found that growth mindsets are related to reduced psychopathology (mental diagnoses) and reduced negative affect (how we feel) (1).
If that isn't reason enough to change, I don't know what is.
If we stay in our fixed mindsets, none of our biggest goals can be achieved because we will always see ourselves as "not good enough". But, if we change to a growth mindset, we can start believing in our ability to grow and put effort toward achieving our goals. Doesn't that sound better?
Photo cred: pixistock
Resource: (1) Schroder, H.S., Callahan, C.P., Gornik, A.E., Moser, J.S. (2019). The fixed mindset of anxiety predicts future distress: a longitudinal study. Behavior Therapy, 50. 710-717.