Suppose you have been exploring all of the available information about changing your mindset. In that case, you may have come across books like Mindsight by Daniel Siegel, The Mayo Clinic Guide to Stress-Free Living, The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg, or Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. An incredible amount of information is available about research and ideas developed to describe how our brains work. If you take the time to read these and many other books on the topic, you will notice a common theme.
You have the power and ability to change your brain. It is all about Thought Habit!
It is one thing to understand how the brain works, but it is another to know how to make it work as you want. That requires change, and change is difficult. Thankfully, it is possible and gratifying. As I mentioned earlier, the brain is similar to a muscle in that when you do specific exercises, the strength of some regions of your brain can grow.
Yes, you can change your brain!
You can create new connections, strengthen existing ones, and build insulation that speeds the transmission of neuronal impulses. In simpler terms, you make the reaction pathways that you want the brain to follow instead of those it defaults to. You can increase your neural growth by taking action and creating an invincible mindset.
What is a Mindset?
A mindset, in short, is a way of thinking.
“Your mindset is your collection of thoughts and beliefs that shape your thought habits. Thought habits affect how you think, what you feel, and what you do. Your mindset impacts how you make sense of the world, and how you make sense of you.” -J.D. Meier
Dr. Carol Dweck, the leading growth mindset researcher for over 30 years, began her research by studying students’ attitudes about failure. She was determined to discover why some students rebound after minor setbacks while others seemed devastated. After reviewing the behavior of thousands of students, she coined the discovery of two types of mindsets: fixed and growth.
Fixed or Growth Mindset
A fixed mindset embodies the belief that your qualities are carved in stone, which creates an urgency to prove yourself repeatedly. On the other hand, a growth mindset is based on the belief that your basic qualities are things you can cultivate through your efforts, learned strategies, and help from others. Essentially, everyone can change and grow through application and experience.
Can you tell into which category you might fall?
The image provided shows that a growth mindset drives motivation and achievement. If you believe you can get more intelligent and achieve more, you are significantly more likely to grow in the way you desire.
Grow Instead of Fail
Another important aspect of having a growth-type mindset is embracing the idea that you’re simply learning how to grow instead of failing at something when the outcome isn’t exactly what you want or what you expected.
Nothing in life is actually pass or fail unless you make it that way. I like to view each day of life as an ongoing experiment. Think of the things you want to achieve, the person you want to become, or the life you want to create, and then start trying to accomplish those things. When they don’t turn out exactly like you thought they would, you learn from what happened and make changes accordingly.
If you think of an actual science experiment, you begin by stating a hypothesis that you want to prove or disprove. You set up the experiment and carry it out while collecting data. In the end, you analyze that data. No matter the results of your experiment, it is impossible for it to fail. UNLESS you have set in your mind that negative results mean failure. The experiment is set up to get results, and that is exactly what you got. The beauty of getting results is that now you are a little more educated and more prudent about the next best step for moving forward.
The next time something doesn’t go quite the way you hope, remind yourself that this is an opportunity to analyze the results and make changes accordingly. There is no place for failure in your vocabulary or your mindset.