Lightning McQueen and growth mindset

Last night I was reading Cars (Disney Pixar) book to my kids before bedtime. Reading a story provides a very different experience from seeing the movie. You infer so many nuances that cannot be visually interpreted. The key take away from reading the story out loud is the importance of a pit crew. Lightning McQueen thought he knew all about racing and winning a race, he got comfortable. The rest of the story is about how he realizes that there is more to a race than just winning it and how important a pit crew is. I enjoyed explaining to my 5 year old what a pit crew is, not just in relation to the story, but life in general. A teaching moment. I told him how his family is his pit crew, we will always have his back. If he falls down, we will help him up, if he succeeds, we will be there to cheer for him, how we are all a team who support each other. I didn’t realize then that I was slowly laying the foundation for the growth mindset. This morning read a wonderful article by Carol Dweck on revisiting the growth mindset.

A growth mindset isn’t just about effort.”, “ need to try new strategies and seek input from others when they’re stuck”. This got me nostalgic over my 8 Saturdays at Product School with my cohort and my teacher. Each class was about feedback, critical and honest feedback. Joining the course was a step I took in growing, in learning. Getting input from others and applying was more than just effort, it was about continuous improvement. The article has given some important tips that I can apply in inculcating a love for learning, in my kids.

Coming back to pit crew, I believe it is about having people you can trust in your corner, people who will not hesitate to speak the truth, be honest and critical at the same time cheer loudly when things go right. I am very thankful for a family that has my back, for mentors who act as sounding boards when I want to bounce ideas, for friends who will tell it like it is. It is up to me to teach my kids how they can work on adding to their pit crew.