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Overcoming the Fixed Mindset Mentality

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When it comes to self-help, there are usually two general notions that are promoted: Individuals have a growth mindset, or alternatively, they possess a fixed mindset. Those with a growth mindset are always trying to improve themselves by learning new things or fostering their own growth. On the other hand, those with a fixed mindset believe that nothing can change and continue on as they are, regardless of how they perceive their lives and how unhappy they may be.

Can you relate to this? While you may be tempted to focus solely on your growth and may therefore work, grind, and focus on achieving your goals, you must find a healthy balance between work and relaxation to excel in self-development and increase your productivity. Let’s take a look at what a growth mindset is, and how you can use it to better yourself!

Introducing: The Growth Mindset

So, what is a growth mindset? How does it differ from the fixed mindset? Growth requires that you use more than one strategy but that you also include relaxation and rest in your self-development journey. To successfully overcome challenges, like those you face whenever you are trying to grasp the attention of your customers, or when you want to stand out more from the competition, you not only need to focus on the growth of your company but your personal growth too. 

For example, as a business owner, you may need to increase your productivity efforts to beat out competitors in a particular industry; so, think about how you can apply this to your own industry. This is because a growth mindset is one where you always see the potential for improvement, and where challenges become learning opportunities instead of overwhelming barriers in your way. Can you think of such challenges, and how you learned from them?

“Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed no hope at all.” – Dale Carnegie

Maximizing Your Potential

A growth mindset also means that individuals try to maximize their potential in all senses of the term. So, if you possess this kind of attitude, you are always looking for the biggest and best way to achieve something instead of looking at barriers in your way as something that you can’t get over. When it comes to beating out challenges or overcoming obstacles, those in a growth mindset are interested in finding the bigger picture and what’s going to get them there– not focusing on the opposite. 

In contrast, if you have a fixed mindset, you tend to look at obstacles as a roadblock or something that is going to prevent them from achieving their goals. So, having this growth mindset is truly about learning to maximize your potential and focusing on the ways to do so rather than constricting yourself to the things you feel comfortable with. It’s about getting out of your comfort zone!

Accept Success and Failure

This mindset expects to encounter both successes and failures throughout your path. Individuals who live life with a fixed mindset are not willing to take a chance or even to look at an opportunity for growth simply out of fear of failure. On the other hand, those who embrace growth are willing to look at challenges as opportunities and are eager to try new things, even if they lead to failure. Why? Even in terrible experiences, you can always learn something new! Because the growth mindset encourages you to be adaptive, it can greatly improve productivity as you learn to adapt to difficult or challenging circumstances rather than being stuck and stopped right in your way at the mere sight of a challenge.

“Look for the good in every situation, seek the valuable lesson in every setback, look for the solution to every problem. Think and talk continually about your goals.” – Brian Tracy

Increased Motivation and Discipline

A fixed mindset can cause a person to be paralyzed by the fear of failure. In addition, because they do not believe that they have much control over any outcome, many people with this mindset also lack motivation to succeed and to even get themselves started. They also often get discouraged when they don’t see immediate results from their efforts, which can lead them to procrastinate or to simply give up. In addition, many people with this mindset are not motivated to take reasonable risks in dangerous situations, because their perception is that failure has many consequences that are either unavoidable or that could potentially hold them back from any possible success. 

Their thinking tends to be that if they do anything too risky, they will permanently lose what they have worked for and end up as a failed person. Instead, a growth mindset will help you become more disciplined and motivated to work towards the things you want to achieve because you see failure as a way to learn, and you learn to appreciate this opportunity to grow.  In fact, a growth mindset allows people to take calculated risks and to evaluate and revise their initial assumptions as the situation requires. It allows people to accept uncertainty as a natural part of life and to use uncertainty as a tool for growth. 

Your mindset is very important if you want to be a well-performing, highly productive, and focused individual. A growth mindset permits you to take risks by allowing you to consider uncertainty as a natural fact of life, rather than as a problem to be fixed; and to make calculated decisions based on this. It also allows you to be a more enthusiastic person, someone who is interested and dedicated to their success. So get out of the fixed mindset, and instead, focus on expanding yourself by adopting a mindset of growth.

Julie Zhu is an experienced marketing consultant based in NYC. She helps entrepreneurs and small business owners raise their visibility and stand out in their industry. Ready to accelerate your business's growth and reclaiming your time? Check out her free guide "How to Get 10 New Leads in just 30 Minutes" here.

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