In management theory and psychological theory, a growth mindset is simply an extended set of ideals, methods, or beliefs held by a group or individual of individuals. A growing mindset may also be viewed as stemming from a person’s view of his/her true world view or philosophy of life. It is different from the conventional “business-minded” mindset, which assumes that all decisions are motivated by profit. A growing mindset, on the other hand, recognizes that there may sometimes be an element of human uncertainty or risk involved in making business decisions.
According to the study of human behavior called the National Academy of Sciences, “A growing mindset is sometimes linked with increased assertiveness, and it is associated with a decreased perception of risk.” Additionally, “aversiveness in the face of potential danger or the search for novelty in everyday situations may be associated with increased productivity and a more positive work environment.” Although there are numerous studies on the link between a successful attitude and a high level of productivity, psychologists agree that the link between a growth mindset and creativity is most often in how people make mistakes rather than the quantity or quality of their work.
According to a popular belief, the goal of a successful manager is to prevent or correct mistakes made in the process of doing the necessary tasks. The philosophy of growth mindset is quite different. Its underlying premise is that a mistake is never a negative event, unless it turns into a disaster that crushes all hopes and results in the loss of whatever was valued most. The key to attaining a positive view of risk and adversity is to always remember the good that can come out of even difficult experiences. Failure, however, is not the end; it is only the beginning of something better, larger, and more meaningful.
One of the keys to a successful growth mindset is to never compare yourself to others. Self-esteem is related to motivation, and the former is related to the latter. People with low self-esteem will usually avoid risks and challenges because they think that failure will bring down not only themselves, but their employers, too. High self-esteem, on the other hand, encourages people to take on challenges and overcome obstacles just to be able to show off their abilities. This will make them feel better about themselves and build their self-confidence and self-esteem.
The challenge of facing new challenges is part of growing up, but this does not mean that you cannot start focusing on your weaknesses. As students grow, they should start focusing on the things that they are good at instead of what they are not so good at. Students will learn more by working on what they are good at, not by spending their time on what they are not so good at. When students start focusing on their strengths, however, they also start building a growth mindset. Because the key to motivating others is to build a sense of self worth, students who start focusing on their strengths will also be able to motivate the rest of the group.
The problem lies in students who are not aware that they have a growth-mindset or a fixed mindset. Students with a growth mindset are always optimistic and look for the good in everything. They look for opportunities instead of threats. In fact, the more risks they take, the more they will get better at avoiding them in the future. A fixed mindset on the other hand, will always see things in a certain way. Students with a fixed mindset will not take any opportunities into account because they already know that there will be risks involved, no matter how small they seem.
Student with growth mindset will not be afraid of taking risks. They know that making mistakes will help them improve and become better human beings. Instead of getting depressed over mistakes, students with a growth-mindset will take it as a lesson in life – something that they can use to improve on their next endeavors. The biggest challenge that most students with intelligence problems face is not overcoming their challenges but rather accepting them and building their resilience to the situation. If they had embraced their weaknesses, overcome the challenge by getting better at the things that they are good at, and learned to be comfortable with mistakes, they would be able to bounce back from setbacks that will surely come in their life.
Intelligence is not a fixed attribute. Anyone, regardless of intelligence, can become a leader, succeed at work, and achieve personal goals. If you’re not one of those people with growth mindsets, the next time you encounter a challenge, don’t let your intelligence defeat you.