3 Takeaways from Mindset by Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D.

3 Takeaways from Mindset by Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D.

At Sidi.io, one of our core values is having a growth mindset.

We believe that we’re all students and that we have to be open to and constantly seek out new opportunities to learn, grow, share and mentor, every single day.

It just so happened that this aligned perfectly with our Book of the Month selection for this month, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck Ph.D.”

After discussing what it means to have a fixed and growth mindset, our team came away with the following takeaways:

  1. Identifying the Growth vs Fixed Mindset
  2. The Fixed Mindset Prevents Success
  3. Your Talent & Future Are Not Predetermined  

Identifying the Growth vs Fixed Mindset

Someone with a growth mindset views intelligence, abilities, and talents as learnable and capable of improvement through effort.

Whereas, someone with a fixed mindset believes that they’re born with certain intelligence, skills and abilities that cannot change.

During our group discussion, the team did a deep dive into their thoughts about the growth mindset vs the fixed mindset.

Here are our key takeaways and learnings:

Fixed Mindset

  • A fixed mindset is something that sticks with you well into adulthood even after you leave that environment because that’s what you’re used to.
  • Even if you start off in a fixed mindset, it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to stay in a fixed mindset.
  • We were all aware of the growth mindset and fixed mindset, it’s just that we never had a label for it.

Fixed Mindset Voice

There are many times in your life when you’ll hear the negative voice of the fixed mindset.

Below are some examples the team had come up with that depict the fixed mindset voice.

Do any of these sound familiar to you?

  • I failed.
  • I’m not good enough.
  • I was better off in a different role.
  • I’m not representing my company well.
  • I’ll ignore it and hope it goes away.

Growth Mindset

  • We can look at challenges and difficulties as opportunities.
  • Having a growth mindset empowers you to think about whether or not you have a given situation, the way that you think about it can change how it affects you.
  • Striving for a growth mindset challenges us to look at situations in a new way.
  • When you’re striving for a growth mindset and you’re trying something new, don’t write it off right away even if it’s difficult. Give yourself three tries before deciding that it’s not for you.

Growth Mindset Voice

Below are some examples the team had come up with to change their fixed mindset thoughts into a growth mindset.

  • I really want to understand how I can turn failure into an opportunity.
  • I can improve my skills with effort and practice.
  • It’s never too late to learn.
  • It’s okay if I fail, at least I learned something.
  • I appreciate constructive criticism.

Now that our team understands which voice belongs to which mindset, we now have the tools to transform our fixed thoughts into a growth mindset.

The Fixed Mindset Prevents Success

The idea of trying and still failing–of leaving yourself without excuses–is the worst fear within the fixed mindset…(p. 41). 

During this part of the discussion, the team talked about how a fixed mindset can prevent people from trying things they may or may not be good at.

  • People who have fixed mindsets are typically embarrassed because they tend to have an ego. So to them, asking questions is showing weaknesses and allowing vulnerability.
  • You can lose a little bit of the joy in your life and other aspects of your life if you have a closed mindset.
  • I can now pinpoint when I’m approaching situations with a fixed mindset and I can find ways to get out of that.
  • There are so many different ways that you can tackle challenges or experiences and it’s really exciting because you can label them and understand them a little bit better.

A Motivating Setback

  • I had a personal setback that really helped me start to have a growth mindset and I feel like you can really see where the shift in my mindset started to happen.
  • I had two people who helped me to kind of open my mind even when I didn’t want to.

Your Talent & Future Are Not Predetermined

Just because some people can do something with little or no training, it doesn’t mean that others can’t do it (and sometimes do it even better) with training.  This is so important because many, many people with a fixed mindset think that someone’s early performance tells you all you need to know about their talent and their future (p. 70). 

Below are key takeaways from our team about why they think people with a fixed mindset stay away from new challenges.

  • We think some people are afraid to fail, so they don’t try because then they don’t have to worry about failing.
  • Whatever you’re afraid of, the only way to get over it is to go ahead and do it, the experience is in the journey!
  • Failures provide experiences.
  • I used to think that failing meant I could never do it, but now I recognize it’s the best teacher.

Would We Recommend Mindset?

Overall, the team has come to the conclusion that Mindset offered tremendous value.

“Not only is Mindset great for businesses, it also touches on sports, parenting, relationships, and school.”

Members of our team acknowledged that they’re already actively applying the learnings from Mindset not only in their work, but also throughout their daily lives.

One team member shared that they are using the book to help their children understand how to look at things with a growth mindset and others stated that they’re using it to not only understand themselves, but others as well.

“This book taught me how to identify when the fixed mindset is taking over, how to process it, and turn it into a growth mindset.”

Rating: 5 Stars

Get your copy of Mindset here.


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