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What is a growth mindset OR How to develop a growth mindset.

What is a growth mindset? What are the benefits of developing one? How do you cultivate a growth mindset?

A growth mindset is the philosophy that your abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work – brains and talent are just the starting point. For example, instead of believing that ‘I’m not good at Maths’, I’ll recognise that ‘I can improve my understanding of the subject even if I’m not where I’d like to be yet’. It’s the exact opposite of a ‘fixed mindset’ which says that our ability, character and intellect cannot be changed or improved. Here at Doceo, we encorage all our students to develop a growth mindset, to foster a sense of resilience and a lifelong love of learning that is essential to success.

How do you develop a growth mindset?

  1. Do some reflection. A useful starting point is to acknowledge the things you want to improve on. It might be that you want to work on listening to others better or becoming a regular reader. Whatever skill or character trait you want to ‘grow’, take note of it and then you can start making active steps to doing so.
  2. Try new things. Challenges are often the best way to learn and the same goes for developing a growth mindset. If you want to work on your listening skills, put yourself in an environment which requires you to exercise this habit and in doing so, you’ll improve your ability as well as your belief in your capability to do new or challenging things.
  3. Display visible reminders around you. For example, you might change your lock screen to your goals for the quarter or have a reminder of your targets on a vision board in your room.
  4. Read books with characters who have faced challenges and have shared their strategies to overcoming them. This is a fantastic way not only to remind ourselves that we’re not alone in facing challenges but also to learn how others have coped and dealt with theirs. For example, ‘Taking Up Space’ by Chelsea Kwakye and Ore Ogunbiyi is an amazing book for incoming black undergraduates as the authors share their experiences in further education and advice for others. You could also check out ‘Noughts & Crosses’ by Malorie Blackman and ‘What Do You Do With a Problem?’ by Kobi Yamada.
  5. Follow social media pages of real models who have faced challenges and shared their strategies to overcoming them. Taking inspiration from other people who have faced a similar challenge to you can be really encouraging so have reminders around you that it is possible.
  6. Model growth mindset and teach others. They say teaching is one of the best ways to really prove that you understand a topic or concept. Plus, if you help the people around you develop a growth mindset, it’s a win-win for both of you as you can encourage each other on your journey of continuous growth. If you have younger siblings, friends family members who might benefit then feel free to teach them what you learn and discuss how you plan to implement it.
  7. Follow Doceo! Shameless plug but we are passionate about helping young people develop a growth mindset and our weekly tips are simply unrivalled so what are you waiting for?

A great starting point for developing this growth mindset is to do some reflection and identify where you want to improve. So, feel free to leave a comment and let me know one thing you’d like to work on this month.

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