What is a growth mindset?
Growth mindset was briefly mentioned in our previous blogs on compassion fatigue and resilience. Developing compassion for yourself and others includes the arts of forgiveness, growth mindedness and gratitude.
The terms growth mindset and fixed mindset were originally coined by Carl Dweck during the 1980’s (Dweck, 1986). A ‘fixed’ mindset is when somebody has a fixed belief about their abilities. It can be either positively or negatively fixed, for example, someone might think ‘I’m good at cooking!’ or ‘I’m bad at maths’. The problem with these mindset statements is that if someone thinks they are naturally good or bad at something they are unlikely to try hard at it.
Alternatively, a ‘growth’ mindset links effort, not ingrained ability, to success. People with a growth mindset are likely to increase the effort they put in to achieve success. Most people have a mixture of growth and fixed mindsets for different activities.