Anyone will tell you that attitude can make up for other things that may be lacking when it comes to success. Carol Dweck’s most recent research shows that attitude is a more effective predictor of success than IQ. However, what makes a difference is not whether you are Mary Sunshine, alway arriving with a smile and a spring in your step or Sam Schlubbum who greets interactions with a stoic face and isn’t excited about too much of anything.
The key difference is whether you have a growth mindset or a fixed mindset. A growth mindset embraces challenges, persists in the face of setbacks, believes effort will lead to a level of mastery, and learns from criticism. A fixed mindset,on the other hand, tends to avoid challenges, gives up easily, doesn’t believe effort will lead anywhere and ignores useful criticism. I’m sure we all know people who fit both of these descriptions.
If you’re stuck in a fixed mindset, don’t despair. Anyone can move into a growth mindset. The key is to start small. For example, when you’re faced with a challenge and ready to give up, decide to work at it for a few more minutes. Decide what you’re passionate about and find ways to incorporate more of that into your day. When the answer is no, don’t be afraid to try again. Countless successful people were rejected over and over again.
Watch the people around you this week. Who is exhibiting a fixed mindset? Who’s exhibiting a growth mindset?