There are two mindsets which we manifest from a very early age, that influences a great deal of our behaviour, rapport with professional and personal success cum failure and proclivity towards happiness.
How do you react during challenging times ? Do you waste your time proving yourself repeatedly that you are the best ? Or do you focus more on being better without bothering about being understood by others?
If you engage in the former, you have a fixed mindset. If you do the latter, then congrats you have a growth mindset. Most of us have both the mindsets with one overruling the other. Whenever we get accustomed to the fixed mindset, it could make living life a Herculean task.
A passion for learning is more important than a hunger for approval. There is a saying that if you ask a question, you are a fool only for five minutes. But if you never ask a question, you remain a fool lifelong.
If you’re the kind of person who hesitates to ask a question out of the fear of being embarrassed, then you are stuck in the fixed mindset. You need to grow.
In an interesting research by a psychologist, a group of five year old kids were given puzzles to solve. They could either redo an easy jigsaw puzzle which they were habituated with or try a harder one to challenge themselves. These children displayed specific traits of either of the two mindsets.
Kids with “fixed” mentality chose the easy task of sorting the puzzles that would only affirm their already existing solving skills, conveying to the researchers their belief that smart kids are immune to mistakes.
The ones with the “growth” mindset came from the belief that doing the same puzzle over and over again if wouldn’t help them in learning anything new. One batch of kids wanted to succeed to appear smart whereas the other set of kids wanted to succeed by becoming smarter which could only be done by stretching themselves.