This One Change Will Dramatically Improve Your Ability to Take Feedback

A Book Review of “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success”

TypeThursday’s core mission is the critique. It can be challenging to present work publicly for review. In the past year of holding TypeThursday we have noticed certain people thrive while another struggle with critiques. We often wonder why this was the case.


From the book “Mindset”, Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck, in decades of research on achievement and success, has discovered a truly groundbreaking idea — the power of our mindset.

The Fixed Mindset

In the fixed mindset, a person views themselves, and other people’s qualities as static. A given.

The Growth Mindset

While what the author calls the growth mindset, people’s basic qualities are things that cultivated with effort.

The implications of which of these two mindsets a person holds dramatically affect their respective views on effort, failure and success.

Mindsets Change the Meaning of Effort

In the fixed mindset, if a person needs to apply effort, then that person is bad at an activity. Things come easily to people who are real geniuses. Effort is only for people with deficiencies.

Effort in the fixed mindset reduces the assessment of the individual. To apply effort robs the person in a fixed mindset of all excuses. The thought of using effort to be excellent terrifies a person from the fixed mindset.

Mindsets Change the Meaning of Failure

Individual acts, performances or object, do not just stand for themselves, also shift onto describing the person themselves. If the work is a failure, then they are a failure. If you see yourself as a failure, and that fact can not change, the author rightly asks, “where do you go?” Instead of learning and growing from failure, the fixed mindset focuses on repairing their self-esteem by comparing themselves to others worse off or simply blame others for their failures.

The possibility of participating in a TypeThursday critique would be impossible for a person in the fixed mindset. If it were to be exposed the work is incomplete and effort is needed to improve it, it would mean not just the work, but the person, themselves, is a failure.

Growth mindset individuals operate very differently. We have seen it over the last year. These people acknowledge that failure is painful, but it doesn’t necessarily define them as people. Instead, failure is a problem to be faced, learn and overcome. It’s information to help improve their development. If abilities can expand, then there are many paths to success.

Mindsets Change the Meaning of Success

Perhaps the large gap between people I’ve seen with the fixed mindset and growth mindset is in their respective of the sense of success. For the fixed mindset, success is about establishing their superiority over others. Their intelligence, their ability, their achievements have value in how they compare to the rest of the crowd.

Individuals in the growth mindset see success vastly different. Instead of success being a measuring stick to compare to others, success is a measure of themselves doing their best, learning and improving.

The growth mindset view of success is at the core of TypeThursday. A proof shown at TypeThursday is a document captured in time, with an implicit expectation that things need development. But there is potential in the project that, if realized, would make that work outstanding.

At the heart of the growth mindset is a commitment to the value of individuals devoted to growth. That greatness is achievable with dedicated growth and the right environment to support that growth.

We invite you to attend a TypeThursday in either New York City or San Fransisco if you’re in the area.


Interested in learn more? Pick up Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.

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