You have a Growth Attitude when you see your abilities as just the starting point which can be developed by dedication, hard work, and effort. This viewpoint creates a resilience, a love of learning, and easy acceptance of new challenges.
Frequent inner thoughts of a growth attitude:
“Failure is an opportunity to grow”
”I can learn to do anything I want”
”Challenges help me to grow”
”My effort and attitude determine my abilities”
”Feedback is constructive”
”I am inspired by the success of others”
”I like to try new things”
You have a Fixed Attitude when you believe your abilities are just given to you. You might constantly worry about how adequate/inadequate you are instead of developing your abilities. You believe talent alone creates success — without effort and are reluctant to take on challenges.
Frequent inner thoughts of a fixed attitude:
”Failure is the limit of my abilities”
”I’m either good at it or I’m not”
”My abilities are unchanging”
”I can either do it, or I can’t”
”I don’t like to be challenged”
”My potential is predetermined”
”When I’m frustrated I give up”
”Feedback and criticism are personal”
”I stick to what I know”
Here’s the kicker — you can move from a Fixed Attitude to a Growth Attitude instantly. How?
Most people have a mixture of a Growth (GA) and Fixed Attitude (FA) — they might be more fixed at home and growth oriented at work. And if you aren’t a mixture of the two, you can slowly move on the Fixed-Growth Attitude spectrum just a bit. Here are some examples to help you expand your Growth Attitude:
Read a book. Most FA people usually say, “I know everything I need to know!” Pick out a self-help, business, biography or history book and start reading. You will get new ideas from it.
Try something new. Don’t keep doing the same things the same way — drive home a different way, host a meeting outside instead of in a stuffy conference room, reach out and have lunch with a connected person.
When you’re about to give up, stick to it. Frustration can be a powerful motivator if focused in the right direction. When we hit an obstacle, we tend to retreat — re-double your efforts and move forward.
Challenges in life are a part of growth. It’s the world testing us to see if we will evolve or huddle in our cave (or cubicle). If work stops becoming a series of challenges and turns into a 9-5 mundane process, it’s time for you to kick it up a notch. Ask for more interesting work, get on a hot project, or look for a better position.