EXCERPTS FROM THE BOOK; MINDSET AND THE MODERN YOUTH CHAPTER 1 PART 1

CHANGE YOUR MINDSET

“Once your mindset changes, everything on the outside will change along with it” — Steve Maraboli

Cambridge advanced learners dictionary (Third edition) defines mindset as a person’s way of thinking and opinion, mindset is therefore a mental attitude that will determine how you interpret and respond to a situation. Mindsets are powerful beliefs in your mind, and you can change them because you always have a choice. The brain is like a muscle that gets stronger and works better the more it is exercised. Usually people believe the brain is stationary which makes them believe further that talent and giftedness are unchanging personal traits that will eventually lead to success. The truth is, every person’s brain has a genius-like ability, your weapon to becoming successful lies in your ability to develop this genius-like character in you. Every time you work hard, stretch yourself and learn something new your brain forms new connections and over time you actually become smarter. According to the research by Dr. Carol Dweck, a professor of psychology at Stanford University. People have two types of mindset, a fixed mindset where people believe their abilities are fixed, that they have a certain amount of intelligence or talent and that’s that, affirming that they can learn new things but can’t change their ability. On the other hand is the growth mindset where people believe that their abilities are things they can cultivate and develop throughout their lives, they believe that through effort and learning they can become smarter and more talented, they acknowledge that some peoples are naturally brilliant but they focus on the idea that everyone can get better with time.

“It is easier for one to take risks and to chase his dreams with a mindset that has nothing to lose. In this lies the immense passion, the great advantage of avoiding a materialistic, pleasure filledway of life” — Criss Jami

We shall take a look at both mindsets, those with fixed mindsets believe they are what they are, and still possess a desire for positive self-image and of course want to perform well and look smart, while those with growth mindset believe that intelligence and abilities can be developed since they believe the brain is like a muscle which can be trained therefore they acquire the desire to improve. Also people with fixed mindset avoid challenges, they think it’s hard and success is not assured, so rather than risk failing negatively and tarnishing their self-image they choose to avoid challenges and stick to what they can do well. A challenge to a growth minded person is welcomed with open arms because they know they will come out stronger on the other side. Obstacles scare away a fixed minded human and he gives up without a fight, while people with growth mindset are not discouraged by obstacles because they see failure as an opportunity to learn, and so whatever happens they win. Fixed mindset people see making effort as fruitless or worse, they avoid making it recapping that their effort will not take them an inch away from where they are, while the growth minded fellow sees effort as something necessary to grow and master useful skills. The way this two categories of people deal with negative forces varies with respect to their cognitive abilities for example, in dealing with criticism, a fixed minded person ignores negative feedbacks by refusing to see his flaws and also take them as insult and further isolating himself from external influences that can help him generate some positive change. Criticism to a person with the growth mindset is seen as an opportunity to know ones weakness and Achilles heel so he can go ahead in growing better.

“A tornado of thought is unleashed after each new insight. This in turn results in an earthquake of assumptions. These are natural disasters that re-shape the spirit.” — Vera Nazarian

It is therefore safe to say that those with fixed mindset may attain a level of success in
 their life even though they don’t reach their full potentials and Growth mindset people will
 always reach a higher level of achievement which also gives them a sense of free will. It is good news to learn that it is possible to change your worldview from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. The aim of this book is virtually how youths with fixed mindset will learn how to change develop a growth mindset while applying their new acquired cognitive functions into some very important aspects which will fuel and transform this great country of ours. Before we begin to learn how to change our mindset into a positive and progressive one I will like to know to what extent do you strongly agree or agree or strongly disagree or disagree with these statements:

  1. No matter what kind of person you are, you can always change substantially.
  2. Trying new things is stressful for me and I avoid it.
  3. You can always change the basic thing about the kind of person you are.
  4. I appreciate when people, parents, coaches, teachers give me feedback about my performance.
  5. I often get angry when I get negative feedback about my performance.
  6. You can learn new things, but you can’t really change how intelligent you are.
  7. You can do things differently, but the important parts of who you can’t really be changed.
  8. Human beings are basically good, but sometimes make terrible decisions.
  9. An important reason why I do my school work is that I like to learn new things.
  10. Truly smart people do not need to try hard.

“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

The answers and opinion you give to these statements will basically give you an insight to the type of mindset you have, although some people have a balanced type of mindset where they both exhibit a fixed and growth mindset in different aspect of their life. After sincerely
 giving your opinion to the statements, you can check the answers description or type of statement to which your opinion is attached.

  1. Personality/character mindset — growth
  2. Ability mindset — fixed
  3. Personality/character mindset — growth
  4. Ability mindset -growth
  5. Ability mindset — fixed
  6. Ability mindset — fixed
  7. Personality/character mindset — fixed
  8. Personality/character mindset -growth
  9. Ability mindset — growth
  10. Ability mindset — fixed

“Anyone who stops learning is old, whether at twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning stays young” — Henry Ford

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