Have you heard of mindset?
Quite popular in the world of entrepreneurship, this is a concept used to describe the different mentalities of an individual and how they influence the personal and professional choices of each one.
In free translation from English, the word means ” configuration of the mind ” and this gives us a good clue as to its meaning.
In fact, when we talk about mindset, we refer to characteristics of the human mind that will determine our thoughts, behaviors and attitudes .
But there is an important aspect to highlight.
Although this configuration of the mind is decisive for your worldview and behaviors, the mindset need not be immutable.
That is, it makes sense when you hear about “changing the mindset”, as this is a skill that can be developed , adapting the individual, his actions and reactions to the context.
Next, we will better understand the concept, its variations, the importance and impacts on professional and personal life.
See the topics we have prepared for your reading:
- What is mindset?
- How important is the mindset?
- Types of mindset
- Find out what your mindset is
- Fixed mindset
- Growth mindset
- How does success psychology work?
- How to develop your mindset for success?
Interested in the subject? So, follow through.
What is mindset?
Mindset is the configuration of the mind, a concept that seeks to understand the psychological predisposition of a person who prioritizes certain thoughts and behavior patterns to then propose and develop a new approach.
It is an individual vision, which makes perfect sense.
The popular saying says that opinion is equal to taste, because everyone has their own.
This is evident if we understand that the worldview of each person does not depend only on what he sees with his eyes.
The truth is that each individual will receive information in a way and, in response, interpret it according to the set of tools that he has available.
This information – whether visual, auditory, olfactory, taste or tactile – is like code that needs to be interpreted in a process in which each will assign meanings according to their subjectivity.
And it is precisely this subjectivity that has been given the name of mindset.
A pioneer in the study of the theme, psychologist Carol S. Dweck speaks, in her work Mindset: the new psychology of success (2017), about the importance of the opinions that the individual adopts about yourself for your relationship with the world.
The author argues that these opinions are capable of affecting your choices, determining the way you live your life .
If someone believes they are a person with learning disabilities, for example, it will make them try to prove to be sufficiently intelligent all the time.
Still, there will be those who, because they believe they are not capable, will not even try to perform a task.
These beliefs tend to emerge in childhood and adolescence , at a time of development when situations or statements by third parties can cause deep, lifelong marks.
How important is the mindset?
As it is a configuration of the mind, the mindset will influence, directly or indirectly, from everyday decisions to those that can radically change a person’s life.
And so that the importance of the method becomes clearer, nothing better than using an example. Or, in this case, the conclusions of a study conducted by Carol Dweck.
In her book, she reports that interest in the mindset started from an investigation into children and their behavior .
In the research, the author analyzed how the little ones dealt with failure and frustration.
In her method, she welcomed the children into her classroom, one at a time, offering them a series of puzzle activities, which became progressively more difficult as the experiment progressed.
When interviewing them about their strategies and how they were feeling with the task, Carol could observe that some children did not even see the inability to complete the puzzle as a failure.
She was surprised to see children excited by the challenge, showing themselves even more excited even though they couldn’t complete the puzzle.
The researcher, who until then focused her research on failure and how people face these situations, was surprised to realize that some of them not only manage to deal with failure very well , but even really like the experience.
On the one hand, some of the children in the experiment saw difficulties as the end of the journey, many times, even refusing to even try, demonstrating that they believe that failure was already given
Others, however, were encouraged by the difficulties and felt motivated to overcome that difficult situation they faced.
Thus, Carol concludes that one of the most striking possibilities offered by the mindset is to transform the meaning of effort .
In a society that believes that effort is an exclusive task for those without capacity, it is revolutionary to think of it as a natural path, as part of the process for everyone.
The discovery served as an incentive for further studies on the mindset, always aiming at human evolution and the achievement of goals.
Types of mindset
You may remember the classic tale of the hare and the tortoise that ran a race.
Even though the hare was faster and more athletic, it is the turtle who prevails in his constant effort , winning the podium in the end.
Meanwhile, the hare, precisely because he believes that his capacity is sufficient for victory, ends up wasting time, sometimes bragging to the competitor, sometimes taking naps along the way.
But, after all, if the hare had greater capacity than the turtle, why didn’t it win the race?
Although some people may take from this story that effort is something for those who have no capacity, it is clear to present the importance of effort to achieve a goal .
In this sense, Carol Dweck invites us to divide people in two perspectives, in two types of mindset.
The first type – the fixed mindset – defines those who believe that their qualities are immutable, that is, their natural abilities and talents are the most important factors that will determine their success or failure.
In the case of the fable, it represents the hare that does not strive to achieve its goal because it believes that the race was already won before it even started.
In the experiment with children with puzzles, they are those who give up before even trying, because they are frustrated with the difficulty of the task.
This is because the fixed mindset indicates that we are all born with certain determining qualities and they accompany us for the rest of our lives.
Thus, phrases such as: “ I see no reason to try if I already know that I will not have a satisfactory result .”
Also people with a fixed mindset tend to spend more time and energy trying to prove their worth to themselves and the world.
On the other hand, there is the growth mindset , which indicates a greater malleability of characteristics, through the belief that innate capacities are just potentialities that can be developed (or not) through effort.
People with this type of configuration are not deceived by their own potential, nor are they genius or omnipotent.
In fact, anyone with a growth mindset assumes that all humans have unknown potential , which can be activated by education, passion and effort.
Find out what your mindset type is
Now that you know the meaning of the concept and its importance, you are ready to find out which mindset fits and learn to use them for your benefit.
The good news is that no one is born with an immutable mindset type , which will last for the rest of their lives, let alone we are doomed to this or that future because of our skills and abilities.
Of course, we all have our skills, but they really are just potentials that can be developed – and they don’t represent a destiny written in stone.
One of the main points of the theory presented by Carol Dweck is that our mindset is formed by the daily choices and positions , almost in a daily exercise.
So, the only person who can choose to sustain this or that mindset is yourself.
In order to understand which mindset we fit into, it is essential to observe reaction and behavior in the face of two concepts that are very common in everyday life: effort and failure.
Who has a fixed mindset, sees failure much more as an identity than as a situation, a challenge to be overcome.
Because they believe that people, and themselves, are born with a limited amount of skills, fixed-minded individuals see no reason to try to overcome their limits .
They think something like: “If I studied for an exam and still had an insufficient grade, it means that I will never be able to get a good grade, regardless of how much I study.”
These people see the results of their efforts as a direct reflection of who they are – and not just an indication of how they tried to accomplish the task.
In the same sense, effort is something delegated to failures, as the winners are guaranteed access to this highly sought after place of success.
In education, people with a fixed mindset tend to be less confident that their effort will pay off, viewing low grades as clear evidence of their lack of intelligence.
This movement becomes a snowball because, unmotivated, the student may no longer want to study because, in his view, “it is not worth it”.
In response to the lack of effort, he ends up creating positive reinforcements about his disability .
Unmotivated by his grades, he no longer dedicates himself to studies, which results in even worse results, which, in turn, indicate to that person that he is, in fact, what his grades demonstrate.
In contrast, the growth mindset assumes that no one was born a genius and that there are no people predestined for success or failure .
On the contrary, people with this configuration see that talent is part of the nature of every human being, and it is up to each one to identify their potentialities and develop them through effort and knowledge.
These individuals view failure as a situational outcome, feeling challenged to seek new solutions to problems.
It is as we saw in the puzzle experiment, in which some children were excited by the increased difficulty.
What happens is that individuals with a growth mindset are motivated when something goes wrong.
At the end, the growth mindset recognizes that success is not given and that effort is an intrinsic part of the process.
These people are even attracted to failure at a certain level, because they believe that it indicates that they do not yet know how to do that, but that they already know how not to do it – and that is a starting point.
As a rule, they have a sharper self-perception and are able to more fairly assess their strengths and weaknesses.
How does successful psychology work?
Mindset is also called the psychology of success.
And it works to identify what a person’s thoughts and behavior patterns are.
By the time you get here, you already know the two possible paths, and you probably already have an idea about which mindset definition best fits your profile .
And don’t worry if you identify characteristics of the two mindsets in their behavior, because this is quite common.
In fact, it is even expected to happen in different contexts.
In any case, of the two paths, only the growth mindset is able to lead the individual to develop all their potential , guiding their efforts towards success.
This is because people with a fixed mindset reject effort as a characteristic relegated to those who cannot count on natural talent.
“She’s not very smart, but she’s hardworking” , they say.
If we go back to the fable, nobody wants to be the hard-working turtle , but at most a smarter hare, able to use his talent and the least possible effort to cross the finish line.
We live in a society that cares much more for natural talent, as if it were the very realization of success, and not a potential that needs to be worked on.
The truth is that, just like in the fable, in real life, those who achieve success are those who work constantly , and the loser is one who does not strive.
Of course, it cannot be said that all those who fail do so because they have not tried, because this is not true.
There are an infinite number of psychic, social and physical reasons , which can make one have an advantage over another.
The point is that no matter how much some fail, even if they have tried hard, those who do not, very difficult, will achieve success.
While people with a fixed mindset refuse to even try, because they believe that failure is certain, people with a growth mindset strive, because they are aware that, to win, it is necessary to try – and there is the psychology of success.
How to develop your mindset for success?
The first tip that anyone who wants to develop their mindset for success is that this is not a change that happens overnight , from one hour to the next.
As you start to be more receptive to effort, identifying failures as opportunities, the growth mindset begins to emerge as a reality.
Of course, eventually, the old beliefs will appear in the mind, but that is not what it is about.
We are dealing here with the human mind and, therefore, the changes do not come in a surgical way, but progressively, in everyday attitudes .
This is because the change of mindset begins in behavior, communication, posture, in short, in our ways of relating to the world.
In fact, changing is not an easy task, but it is a possible task.
In order to bring about change, you need a considerable level of self-knowledge to identify what are the beliefs that keep you from the success you so crave.
In this sense, cognitive therapy and the coaching process, both focused on human development, are among the best tools to identify beliefs and modify them.
The mindset concept enlightens us a lot about the value we place on failure and effort in modern life.
While the first became an identity, we live in the shadow of the image we have built of ourselves, afraid of facing challenges for believing that defeat is certain.
The effort, on the other hand, has been relegated to those who are not fortunate enough to count on the brilliance of natural talent.
In this context, those who manage to face failures as challenges stand out and understand that no capacity precedes effort .
To achieve real success, you need to understand the configuration of your mind and, if necessary, reconfigure it to a more positive way, which prioritizes growth.
We hope this article has helped you and serves as a starting point for your development.