What is the growth mindset and how can it help me be happier?
Answer: By helping you rewrite the inner critical voice!
You may have noticed a voice in your head that keeps chattering at you especially during stressful times when you’re trying to achieve your goals and having difficulties. This inner critic can often be more critical and negative than we would be with any other person or allow any other person to be with us. And yet this voice even thought it desires us to be successful wants us to avoid failure so much it uses “tough love” to chastise us which isn’t actually helpful. In order to help ourselves be hapiper and healthier and achieve our life’s goals better, we can learn to rewrite this inner voice in ways that support us in a more compassionate and effective way!
After learning about the principles and benefits of the growth mindset, I created this mug to keep this important tool for happiness ever present in my mind as I go about my day. I’ve found that keeping the lessons I learn “top of mind” as I go through my day is very helpful and that’s why I’m sharing it with others through our blog and our happiness life skills course. We have all kinds of tools like this we have created to help people like you create a positive healthy focus.
The GrowthMindset basically says that we keep growing and improving through every experience especially setbacks and realizing this helps us focus on progress. This way we are more resilient to problems or failures and less likely to beat ourselves up for life’s setbacks.
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It’s too easy to identify one’s feelings of self worth with whatever our latest problems or failures are. But some have learned that these setbacks or failures are not about our failures of character or self-worth but more about the process of learning.
Professional sports athletes especially at the highest levels see losses or strikeouts as part of the process of getting to the eventual hit, home-run or won game. They learn how to reframe or interpret failure. Every strikeout brings the player closer to a basehit or homerun!
Professional sales people learn to see every no they get as getting them closer to a yes and therefore a new sale. They don’t see rejection of their service or product as a statement of their own personal worth. They see the process of “failing” as a journey to reaching success they are on. You can too.
Here’s an example; Instead of saying “Darn it I failed!” or worse “Darn it I failed I’m a failure!” or “I failed again, I’ll never succeed!” try saying “I haven’t succeeded at this YET!” or “I definitely need to find a new way to do this!” or “perhaps I need to get help with this”.
Here are some thoughts or phrases I have found maximize the benefits of the growth mindset. I have learned when I hear critical self talk instead of ignoring it or trying to erase the self-defeating negative self-talk, I modify it by adding on a new bit on the end that changes it to a growth statement. This is how this would look. The positive growth mindset modifiers are in bold appended to examples of inner critic negative self-talk.
I haven’t succeeded with this, yet!
I am upset with myself because I did this or that thing. But that was before and this is now and I can do better this time.
This was a disaster! Okay how does it help me get to the next level? Where’s the lesson for me in this?
I am just no good at this! But I am getting better.
One of the ways or paths to greater happiness is helping others learn and grow. We often feel better when we are involved in something greater than ourselves such as helping others and sharing what we have learned.
So here’s what I’d like to ask you. If you know someone who could benefit from this and stop beating themselves up over perceived failures please share this post with others by forward it in your email, tweeting it or sharing on Facebook, Instagram etc and buy some mugs to share with people you work with or live with too! Then you can talk with them about how to create more happiness, inner peace and progress in life by reframing “failures” or looking at things differently.
So much of our lives are about the decisions we make about what happens to us and in front of us each day. Thank you so very much for taking a moment to share this post with people. I am very grateful you’re here reading this and thinking about how to become happier and share more happiness with others.
Please let me know if you’re familiar with the Growth Mindset? Leave a comment below and tell me about your experiences with it. Or perhaps you have struggled with your own inner critic and found ways of addressing it to create positive change. If so I’d love to hear about it and I think others could learn from this too.
How do you use the growth mindset in your business, in school or your home life?
The growth mindset is an alternative to what most people operate from which is the fixed mindset. The fixed mindset says that some are smarter or more talented than others and no matter how much effort we give things we will never be enough or as good as them and so less successful. The growth mindset teaches that there’s happiness and success to be found in learning and growing through determined persistent effort in life. That all of us can improve! And that setbacks or problems contain opportunities for us to grow as people and to achieve new things in life.
I’ve found that the most helpful part of applying this growth mindset is in my own “self-talk”. There is an inner voice each of us have that chatters away all day and night and tends to be critical and quite often negative.
When we work at retraining this voice to look at our challenges in life not as negative crushing failures that end our hopes and dreams, but as feedback about how we can try new things or reach out to get help, we begin to realize more inner peace and find pleasure in our progress.