Develop a Growth Mindset

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    Kevin Mahoney

    I am currently trying to develop a consistent growth focus in my personal and professional life. One thing I have noticed about myself is that I feel energized when I am in the process of pursuing a goal. However, once the goal is achieved, I tend to feel a letdown and can be left thinking “Now, what?”. To counter this, I desire to focus more on the process of growth and less on the positive results that growth inevitably brings.

    I recently came across and interesting blog post by Sharen Ross titled “5 Ways to Cultivate a Growth Mindset for Self Improvement”. In the blog, Ross compares a “growth mindset” with a “fixed mindset.” Obviously, a growth perspective would be desirable if we are to reach our full potential. Ross gives some simple tips to help cultivate the growth mindset. Such as, obtaining expert help (coaching), seeking out examples of people around you who are committed to growth, focusing your attention on the effort (not outcome) others have put in to be successful, competing with yourself (past achievements), and learning from previous failures.

    This past week I had a chance to develop my growth mindset by learning from a prior mistake. On Thursday, I had the opportunity to be the guest reader for my son’s second-grade class. I prepared for the event by selecting a couple of books ahead of time and reading them through several times beforehand. The event went well, the children were entertained, and my son was excited to see me. Things did not go as smoothly last year when I read to my son’s first-grade class. At that time, I did not practice reading ahead of time. Honestly, I had not given it much thought. As a result, the children were fidgety and they were not as entertained as they could have been. While I made it through the first experience in one piece, I came away understanding that some practice ahead of time was warranted.

    Does the “growth mindset” come easy for you? What are things you do to create such a mindset?

    Ross, S. 5 Ways to Cultivate a Growth Mindset for Self Improvement. Retrieved from


    Jerry Jacob

    A “growth mindset,” as Dweck calls it, is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a tendency to believe that you can grow.The consequences of believing that intelligence and personality can be developed rather than being immutably engrained traits, Dweck found in her two decades of research with both children and adults, are remarkable.



    This was a great read for me! I was following one prescribed program, which had a purpose of personal spiritual growth. It offered me so many things I’d never encorporated into my life before, yet I still decided it wasn’t the sole solution for me.

    Since leaving I’ve told some of my friends and the overwhelming response was “when you bottom out again you know where to come”. I was told The guilt I felt was because I’m letting myself down, but I don’t see it that way. Life is so dynamic, and I love how flexible this is.

    The fact that you felt no guilt in the original reading for your son while in 1st grade and sought to improve, which you did a year later….that is how I want to manage my own life life.


    Right now im not sure what direction to go, I think there is still a massive void where this program used to be, and like ending a relationship, it’s just going to take time to adjust.


    Kevin Mahoney


    Good luck with your new direction. I think the key is putting yourself around people who truly want what is best for you.

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