6 Ways to Develop a Growth Mindset

The world is always rich in opportunities, but only for those who can see and seize them.

learn more about Sherrie Campbell

By Sherrie Campbell

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Succeeding requires that we engage in the process of our own personal growth. It can be incredibly hard to remain forever open to being wrong and changing direction. It is natural to become overly attached to what we think works and to what is familiar. To develop a growth mindset, we must train ourselves not to view "deficit" as a deficiency in our ability, but rather, as a deficiency in our own learning or experience. Since, we are all capable of learning and experiencing, these two constructs can be easily fulfilled. The only way we can stop succeeding is if we choose to close our minds to change, to learning and to further developing the depth of our knowledge and insight.

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1. Continual learning

We must not look for others to approve, we must look to others to help us improve. If we avoid facing obstacles, we cannot maximize upon our current gifts and talents or develop new skills. Challenge always provides us an opportunity to learn. The more we learn, the more knowledge we develop, the more skill we acquire and the more value we offer to our employees, friends and family. This willingness to expand and grow places us in an upward spiral of increasing our income and our emotional well-being. Continuous learning means we're keeping the "raw material pile" of our brain freshly stocked, enabling us to come up with new and better ideas, which every business needs. New ideas and solutions are one of the primary ways to add value to our job, and increase our success.

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2. Perseverance

Feelings of frustration can single-handedly drive us to quit long before we should. We cannot forget that we are designed to thrive. We must train ourselves not to focus on what happens to us, but to focus on what is happening for us. We must discipline ourselves to look at what our challenges add to us, rather than on what they take away. Because we are built to accommodate an adapt, there is no obstacle too great for us to overcome. We must learn to turn our obstacles upside down by acting with a reverse clause, so there is always a way out or another route to get to where we need to go. This help us not to view setbacks as permanent situations set to impede our progress. When we believe setbacks are temporary we can use them to strengthen and empower us.

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3. Embrace challenge

Challenge is going to come. In fact, challenge is an integral part of any worthwhile endeavor. We must learn to embrace it. It is always during our more painful times that we develop the depth of our character. Meeting our challenges head-on builds our resiliency to face even greater challenges to come in our future. Confronting our challenges makes for a smaller ego and brings the humility of realizing there are some things we still need to learn. When we take action in the face of challenge, we develop a sense of personal responsibility, instead of looking to others as a source of blame or help. The confidence and pride of accomplishing difficult tasks frees up our mind and spirit to be kind, thoughtful, and generous to others, letting compassion rule.

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4. Embrace failure

We cannot avoid failure and view this as success. Failure is truly a matter of perspective. It is almost impossible to go through life without experiencing some kind of failure. For this reason, there is no benefit in living a cautious or paranoid life. Doors are going to open and doors are going to close, and we will all likely make some extremely poor decisions. But, we must think of all the opportunities we would miss if we allow our fears to stop us. Failure is a master teacher. It teaches us things about ourselves we could have never learned otherwise. Often, our most usable, practical and valuable insights come only after a failure. Accepting and learning from those insights is the key to our success.

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5. Open to feedback

The more open we are to receiving feedback, the more we increase our chances at success. Effective and timely feedback is a critical component of our success, and should be used in conjunction with setting goals. Effective feedback illuminates our progress. This type of feedback helps us determine where we need to improve and the areas where we are doing great. There is nothing more helpful than understanding what is working for us and what isn't. The sole purpose of receiving feedback is to help us improve our performance. How can this not be positive? When we refuse to receive feedback, we are stubbornly communicating we are not open or willing to change, be wrong or grow. We cannot put off this vibe and become the success we desire to be.

6. Celebrate others

To make the climb to success an enjoyable one, we cannot live jealous and intimidated by others. We must commit to being genuinely happy for the success others have achieved. It is only in committing to this that we cure the envy which can too easily sabotage our own success. There is nothing appealing about a "hater." How we handle other people's success, especially when things may not be going so well for us, is an indicator of our own maturity and belief about ourselves. We must seize every chance presented to us to sincerely congratulate others. This helps create an atmosphere for others to want to celebrate our successes with us as we reach them. The next time someone we know receives great news, don't hate -- celebrate with them. Remember, we reap what we sow. We only set ourselves up for more joy in our own lives as we celebrate the successes of others.

Sherrie Campbell

Psychologist, Author, Speaker

Sherrie Campbell is a psychologist in Yorba Linda, Calif., with two decades of clinical training and experience in providing counseling and psychotherapy services. She is the author of Loving Yourself: The Mastery of Being Your Own Person. Her new book, Success Equations: A Path to an Emotionally Wealthy Life, is available for pre-order.

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