Which One Are You?

We talk a lot about mindset.

But what does that actually mean?

For those who are readers, I highly recommend the book Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Carol Dweck.

Basically the book talks about how there are two mindsets; the fixed and growth mindset.

The Fixed Mindset

A fixed mindset is one where you believe your talents and abilities cannot be improved by any means,  that you are born with what you have and no part of you can be improved.

A person with a fixed mindset believes challenges and less than ideal outcomes are negative.

A person with a fixed mindset attaches themselves to outcomes, e.g You haven’t done a push-up in 20 years but you try a floor push-up and at that moment you can not perform one.

A person with a fixed mindset would believe they can’t do push-ups.

It’s important for you to understand that if you have a fixed mindset, its not your fault. It’s likely something from your past that molded your thinking without you knowing.

Here’s a typical scenario.

Meet Mary

  • Lets imagine an average American girl in todays world, her toys and her tv shows all show skinny women.

  • Mary doesn’t take much interest in sports/exercise.

  • She was never taught fundamental fitness movements & kinesthetic awareness yet she was asked to perform sports in gym class. Since she had no proper training, she felt uncomfortable with exercise & sports so she never played any or learned to exercise.

  • Mary has decent genetics so she stayed slim through high school yet she is still self-conscious because everywhere she looks (tv & magazines) show skinny women.

  • She gains a few lbs through college but still not overweight. Fast forward five years, shes in her late 20’s, still has never learned to balance exercise in life but now is starting to gain weight.

  • Her hormones and metabolism are changing….she is not unable to eat + drink what she always has.

  •  Now Mary is overweight so she decides to run because that’s all she knows how to do.

  • She doesn’t think she is athletic enough for movement and is too self-conscious to try on her own or at a gym.

The Growth Mindset

A growth mindset is where you believe that all aspects of your life can be improved through embracing discomfort, hard work and persistence.

A person with a growth mindset does not attach themselves to outcomes, e.g You haven’t done a push-up in 20 years but you try a floor push-up and at that moment you can not perform one.

A person with a growth mindset would say, welp it has been 20 years, why would I expect to do a push-up? I need to work on these!

Bring Back Mary: Growth Mindset – Spurling version

  • Mary is 20 lbs overweight, barely uses her gym membership because its boring and she doesn’t feel comfortable.

  • Her friend begs her to come into try Spurling so she comes during a bring a friend week (next week!).

  • She has trouble with some of the exercises, but the coaches regress the movements and keep her going.

  • Although tired and out of breathe, Mary is proud of what she just accomplished.

  • She signs up for 12 month membership, and loses 15 lbs in the first 90 days.

  • Mary is now outgoing, move confident than ever and had the most successful year of her career.

How You Can Transition From a Fixed to Growth Mindset

It’s important for you to understand that you were born with a growth mindset…or otherwise you would have never learned to walk.

There are two important points I want you to know:

  1. You are not stuck with a fixed mindset

  2. Even if you have mostly a growth mindset, from time to time you will slip into the fixed way of thinking…this is normal and its okay.

Catch yourself!

Replace I can’t, with I can I just need to work at it. 

Trust me, you can do 99% of things you would ever want to do.

This is not to say you will be close to good at them without any practice but you can do whatever it is to some extent.

When you find yourself setting limitations or letting others set your limitations, snap out of it.

Remember, YOU are the greatest miracle…no computer or anything else has as much ability as you have.

Just realize to do those things you need to progress small steps forward each day and that it will be an adventure; unexpected things will happen, you will have to alter or maybe even change your entire course, there will be highs and lows – embrace it all.

And if you do something and it doesn’t workout the way you wanted it to, feel good about yourself because you just over came a challenge. Next, look at it, whether a push-up or a new job and think, what did I learn from this?

Remember that failure is an event, not a person. Zig Ziglar

1% Better.

Dedicated to Your Success,

Doug Spurling