6 simple activities for exploring the power of mindsets
A curated collection of resources for exploring how the mindset we adopt shapes our future possibilities.
Activity 1: Who do we choose to be?
Purpose — To explore how the mindset we choose to adopt shapes our future.
Time — 20 mins
Materials — Access to YouTube to watch ‘Lost Generation’ (2 min)
Process — Introduce / revise the Fixed, Growth and Benefit Mindsets. Then, invite participants to watch ‘Lost Generation’ to explore where they feel each mindset shows up. After the video is complete, ask participants to pair up to discuss what they found. Finally, facilitate a group discussion about how the future changes depending on the mindsets we choose to adopt. End with the prompt, what happens when we change our mindsets?
Activity 2: Everyday mindset examples
Purpose — To name and share everyday examples of how each mindset shows up in your class / group.
Time — 30 mins
Materials — Sheets of paper and an assortment of coloured pens
Process — Introduce / revise the Fixed, Growth and Benefit Mindsets. Then, in small groups ask participants to write down as many examples as possible of a Fixed Mindset in 3 mins. At the end of the brainstorm, invite each group to share their favourite examples and explain why they think it’s a good example of that mindset. Repeat activity for the Growth Mindset, and once again for the Benefit Mindset. Facilitate a final discussion about what these examples mean for the groups future activities.
Activity 3: Creating cultures of contribution
Purpose — To illustrate how cultures thrive when everyone contributes. A great activity for positively framing a multi-day workshop or the start of a school term.
Time — 45 mins
Materials — Provide every participant with a colourful circle (or large post-it note).
Process — Introduce / revise the Fixed, Growth and Benefit Mindsets. Then, invite participants to reflect on their unique strengths and passions (e.g. character strengths). Next, ask participants to think about an everyday strength or passion they could share with the group for the duration of your time together. Something they believe will make a meaningful difference to the group as a whole. When the participants have something in mind, invite them to write their offer on the top half of the circle and write why they think this offer will bring out the best in the group on the bottom half. Finally, invite participants to pin their co-contributions on the wall to see them as a diverse ecosystem of strengths performing in concert.
Activity 4: 21 day Benefit Mindset challenge
“Small consistent actions performed over 21 days can create a significant impact in our personal lives. When these actions are done by groups of people the impact ripples out even further.” — kindspring.org
Purpose — Can you step-up your Kindness, Gratitude, Mindfulness & more for 21-days straight?
Time — 21 days
Materials — Each participant is required to keep a journal.
Process — This activity challenges participants to do a small act of leadership, everyday, for 21-days straight (e.g. an act of kindness, expressing gratitude or listening to others with our full attention). The only catch with the challenge is that every day, the action you choose must be something new.
What tends to happen is in the first week people act in familiar ways that aren’t too disruptive and outside of their comfort zone. In the second week, the challenge gets harder as we are forced to start trying new things. In the third week, we have to start innovating and be really creative with how we do our actions. By the end of the 21 days, we discover new capacities and latent potential we didn’t know we had in us. The cumulative effect of doing small actions every day creates an upward spiral. You feel good, others feel good, and everyone becomes more courageous and creative.
This simple activity can lead to surprising and even transformative outcomes. By regularly disrupting our routines in life affirming ways, we subtly shift how we see the potential of our everyday possibilities.
More Information —Check out out how to guide or read this heartwarming whole school example from St Francis Xavier College in Australia.
What happens when 3000 students, 500 teachers and a community of parents work together to create an ecosystem of…medium.com
Activity 5: Ready to learn? Ready to lead?
Purpose — To prime an activity with learning and leadership mindsets.
Time — 5 mins
Materials — Paper, pens and mindset reference material.
Process — Prior to beginning an activity, invite participants to reflect on how the mindset they adopt changes the potential of the activity. Facilitate a short discussion to give voice to the collective readiness for both learning and leadership.
Activity 6: Mindset reflections
Purpose — To reflect on how participants’ mindsets shifted at different stages during an activity.
Time — 5 mins
Materials — Paper and pens.
Process — At the end of an activity, invite participants to rule three columns with the headings Fixed Mindset, Growth Mindset, Benefit Mindset. Under each heading, write 1–2 ways they exhibited each mindset. Facilitate a short discussion to give voice to the groups reflections.
Mindset video resources
A full collection of resources are available from our website.
Have you facilitated any of these activities? If so, we’d love to hear about your experiences via our Benefit Mindset Facebook community page.
Or alternatively, do you have an idea for a new Benefit Mindset resource? We’d love to hear from you.