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“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.”

-Thomas Edison

Mindset Matters

Mindset refers to our mental attitude or outlook toward life and it’s challenges. It is the beliefs, thoughts, and attitudes that shape how we perceive and interpret the world. Mindset can be categorized into two main types: 

Fixed Mindset: A fixed mindset is the believe that abilities, intelligence, and talents are fixed traits that cannot be changed or developed. People with fixed mindsets tend to avoid challenges, give up easily in the face of obstacles, and view failure as a reflection of their personal shortcomings.

Growth Mindset: A growth mindset is the belief that abilities can be developed and improved through effort, practice, and learning. A person with a growth mindset embrace challenges, persist in the face of setbacks, and see failure as an opportunity for growth and learning.

Essentially, mindset is a belief that we either control the outcome or we are victims, limited by our circumstances. Despite our current mindset, we do not have to be forever married to this thinking. We have choices and how we choose to approach any task can disrupt this thinking and completely alter the outcome. 

Mindset is also domain specific, which means that we can have a growth mindset towards one skill or domain, and a fixed mindset towards another. For instance you may have a growth mindset when it comes to playing the piano, but when it comes to fitness you might find you have more limiting beliefs. If you are experiencing difficulty with or resistance toward a task, it can be helpful assess your mindset toward that particular task. Simply recognizing certain limiting beliefs can help you move past them. 

We all get stuck in our fixed thoughts at times and can’t imagine there’s another way… of course this is almost never the reality of the situation. 

Consider the game of chess. After the first 4 moves of a chest match you may look at the chess board and see a dozen possible moves, if you're more advanced you might even see a couple hundred potential moves... in reality there are 288+ billion potential moves. 

The fact is that there is always more than we actually see and know. If we can open our minds to just a few more possibilities it could completely change our world.

Here are 5 simple coaching tips for when you are confronted with challenges:

1-Track Effort, not just results 

Tracking behaviors or actions and rewarding consistency.

You may want to lose 10 pounds, but rather that focusing on the actual scale, focus on the behavior (i.e.. eating more slowly, moving more often, etc.) that moves you toward weight loss. You don't control the outcome, you control the process.

2-Pay attention to Small Improvements

Identify 1 small way you improved every day. Identifying your success's empowers you to continue with the behaviors that are working for you. It's the collective impact of many little practices (behaviors) that will make the biggest difference.

3-Learn from Failure

Dedicate time to analyze your “failure” and making a plan based on what you learned. Think about the success's and failure's in your life. Which taught you more? Which made you think and grow? You eliminate "failure" whenever you seize opportunity to grow.

4-Seek out the Opportunities to Practice

Use challenges and difficult circumstances as opportunities to practice the skills that build strength and resilience in that domain of life.

5-Identify the Progress of Your Efforts 

Take note of progress when it happens. Write down what efforts had the greatest impact on that progress.