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Have you ever thought: “My situation has always been the same: I’m stuck and I just need to play the cards I’m dealt”? If you have done this, you are dragging yourself down with a fixed mindset. Alternatively, a growth mindset means that you thrive despite challenges and obstacles because you see them as catalysts for change and don’t see failure as a way to describe yourself.
Events or actions that don’t work out as expected or desired are learning experiences, ways to grow in every facet of your life, and a way to further develop your abilities. Your intelligence, talents, and most importantly, wisdom require setbacks to stimulate fundamental transformation and growth.
We are all familiar with the saying, “No pain, no gain.” However, Arnold Schwarzenegger took that comparison to a new level when he compared the pain of training to the feelings that come from sex. What if we see life’s pain and difficulties as training to help us get better, with all the positive results? We would embrace pain as today’s challenge and remember the feeling we have when overcome. We would not get discouraged or give up on problems; we would expect obstacles and challenges as usual.
Why not give up? Because anything is possible with the right mindset, determination and action. Early in his career, Arnold had trouble getting a job due to his thick accent. His voice was replaced by a voiceover in one of his early movies, “Hercules in New York”! He could have gotten discouraged and given up on his acting career. Instead, he took voice training lessons and improved, became famous and successful and extended that success to almost every aspect of his life.
Related: Do you want to succeed? Turn your fixed mindset into a growth mindset
Sometimes when people are not happy with their situation in life, they believe that changing their location will make things better. They may say, “If I lived here and not there, everything would be fine.” However, they often find that their original problems, difficulties, and challenges have moved in with them after they move. If you have a fixed mindset before you move and have it afterward, you may be happy for a short time, but soon the reality of the struggles will return to your mind. Regardless of the circumstances, a growth mindset trumps everything.
Have you ever been stuck alone in an isolated place for a long time? I know someone who developed significant skill sets, lost 70 pounds, regained good health, and built two startups while facing a placement challenge; they were alone for almost a year during the Covid-19 pandemic. For them, the “pain” of loneliness was ultimately a gift, and they used it wisely.
The key to real change is often elusive: change the way you think, be happy with everything you already have, and be thankful to wake up to another day. Sound simple? Often it isn’t. When various challenges arise, it’s part of human nature to feel overwhelmed. After a while, we can feel like boxers in a boxing match, taking one punch after another, especially if we get caught up in the negativity and sensationalism that often dominates the news. It can make us think that the next coup is just around the corner.
Related: 5 Ways to Maintain a Positive Mindset (No Matter What Challenge You’re Facing)
Instead, we must fight these thoughts and emotions on a daily basis and assume and hope that the next thing that happens to us is positive. Being surprised and happy when something nice happens, and treating it as something undeserved, will completely change our lives. When internalized, pursued daily, and pursued during critical periods of meditation and reflection, that positive thinking will change outcomes for us. Making time for ourselves is essential for this kind of reset.
For example, if we change our minds to a growth mindset before the day begins, as needed throughout the day, and at night before bed, we will live a much better life. This requires energy and concentration, but it is more than worth it. Living, speaking and exhaling positivity “out” will draw positivity into your life, attracting beneficial opportunities and results that are often dismissed as impossible. Our thoughts become actions, our actions become impacts, and others will notice and be positively impacted. A kind word or thought that is genuine and can come naturally from this energy will also open new doors for us. The constant process of striving to be positive can make radical differences in “what happens to us.” Instead, we are driving the change instead of it driving us, and for the better.
Very often people think that money will solve all their problems. However, having a lot of money will only last so long if they are in the wrong mindset. For example, many professional athletes, often highly paid, are bankrupt within five years of retiring.
Without the right mindset, for example, to focus on being an investor and not a consumer, you will always have problems with money. A growth mindset will direct your thoughts and actions to “how can I grow my money, invest, learn from mistakes and get better at it?” Conversely, a fixed mindset can lead to an unwillingness to exercise delayed gratification, that “as long as we’ve got it, we’ll spend it.”
Related: 4 Ways to Stay Positive Even When You’re Stressed Out
A growth mindset will allow for the purchase of luxuries later, with investment earnings instead of salary. Since a growth mindset and an investor mindset are closely linked, it further demonstrates Mark Cuban’s advice, “live like a college student.” Such an approach can lead to lasting success.
Big thoughts lead to real action, and positive action will eventually lead to positive results. Staying relentlessly positive and staying in a growth mindset is the key to lasting success. Such a perspective will help us clear thoughts of feeling like a victim and instead see every obstacle we overcome as another chance for victory, and thus we will be the victors.