Showing posts with label Personal growth. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Personal growth. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Growth Mindset

Copyright 2019 by Mari Andrew

Mindset is probably one of the most overused word in Psychology. It's a loaded term, so to understand it let's look at it's definition in APA (American Psychology Association). Mind-set is a state of mind that influences how people think about and then enact their goal-directed activities in ways that may systematically promote or interfere with optimal functioning. 

So for understanding What is Mindset? we have to look at it through the prism of attitude (state of mind) and behaviour (goal-orientation).

Let's dwell into Dr Carol Dweck's research to understand Mindset further. 

"For thirty years, my research has shown that the view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects the way you lead your life. Believing that your qualities are carved in stone - the Fixed Mindset - creates an urgency to prove yourself because you are concerned with how you'll be judged. The other type of people belief that your basic qualities are just the starting point for development - the Growth Mindset - you can cultivate through your efforts, your strategies, and help from others. Therefore growth mindset makes you concerned with improving." - Dr Carol Dweck

For an easy comparison between the Fixed and Growth Mindset, you can read the table below:

This Blog's tagline says, 'Applied Psychology - Wisdom without application is worthless'. It's great to know this research and theory, but what does it mean to us in practical terms? Is it's real-life application? For this, let's explore the relationship between Ability and Accomplishment.

Research across all spheres of life shows Ability (Talent) is over-rated in long-term success. Only talent does not ensure the sustenance of success. For achieving and maintaining success, one has to back this up with hard work and continuous learning. Well doesn't this sound familiar to Growth Mindset? :) 

So for sure, there is a strong incentive for us to develop a growth mindset and shun the fixed mindset.

In this regard, in a Q&A session, Dr Carol Dweck was asked - Can I be half and half? I recognize both mindsets in myself. 

She replied - "All of us have elements of both - we're all a mixture of fixed and growth mindsets. I'm talking about it as a simple either-or right now for the sake of simplicity. People can also have different mindsets in different areas. I might think that my artistic skills are fixed but that my intelligence can be developed. Or that my personality is fixed, but my creativity can be developed. We've found that whatever mindset people have in a particular area will guide them in that area."

So self-introspect to find out the areas in your life, in which you hold a Fixed Mindset (for example, I am not good in Maths, I can't do programming, etc), embrace and accept it, and embark on the journey of changing your Fixed Mindset to Growth Mindset with willpower and self-control.

Wishing you a happy transformation from a fixed to a growth mindset!

Reference: For a detailed reading, I recommend you pick up the book Mindset by Dr Carol S. Dweck, published by Hachette.

Saturday, October 28, 2023

SHAOLIN - Insights from the Book by Bernhard Moestl

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The author Bernhard Moestl is of German origin. Since his childhood days he has been fascinated by Shaolin Kungfu. He traveled to China and stayed at the famed Shaolin Temple (Monastery) in Henan province to learn kung fu from the monks. This temple was made famous by the movie of the same name 'Shaolin Temple' realized in 1982. The Shaolin Temple was established over 1500 years ago by the Indian monk Bodhidharma. During his stay in the Shaolin Temple, he discovered that Shaolin Kungfu was Mental Discipline (Mind) and Physical conditioning (Body). The Shaolin monks have internalized that it is their mind that energizes the body - or weakens it.

In his book Shaolin, he writes about the Shaolin principles and the Shaolin monks' way of thinking, so that one can imbibe these learnings in their lives to achieve peace, clarity, and inner strength.

My blog summarizes the Key Insights from his book, to provide a quick couple of minutes read. (I have given reference to the book for serious readers who would like to take a deep dive into this 300-page book, which is a worthwhile read). 

The 13 Shaolin Principles and the key insights:

1. The Principle of the Present: Shaolin principle urges us to accept the present moment without attributing any judgment value to it. It urges us to live in the moment (here and now), to give it our everything, accept it with gratitude, and let it go (let bygones be bygones...).

2. The Principle of Mindfulness: The Shaolin principle recognizes Attention as a form of Mindfulness. It urges us to be mindful in the rituals of daily life because mindfulness leads to deeper insights and awakening.

3. The Principle of Resoluteness: The Shaolin principle cautions us not to want something without determination because it takes up an enormous amount of energy that you will lack elsewhere. It teaches us to either do things wholeheartedly or not at all.

Few people Act and Many people React. Resoluteness is the first step to acting.

4. The Principle of Detachment: Shaolin's principle cautions us against Greed because it makes us vulnerable and susceptible to coercion. The principle of detachment teaches us to do things because we want to do them, not because we want to gain something in return.

5. The Principle of Calmness: Shaolin's principle says a good fighter has no anger, nor should they. A furious person has power, but they have no control over the situation or the consequences of their actions. People lose their true calm in life, therefore they react without comprehending the full situation. If you are agitated, do and say nothing. Slowly breathe in and breathe out and wait till your spirit is calm and clear once more.

6. The Principle of Slowness: Shaolin's principle asks us to reflect - What have you gained by the increase in speed (fast life)? And what has it cost you? It urges us, not to allow ourselves to be rushed.

It is better to do nothing than to achieve nothing with a lot of effort. - Lao Tzu

7. The Principle of Imitation: "There are three methods by which we may learn Wisdom. First by Reflection, which is the noblest, Second by Imitation, which is the easiest, and Third by Experience, which is the bitterest." - Confucius. Shaolin principle gives importance to imitation but also cautions against mindless imitation. It urges us to reflect on what is worth imitating and then to learn easily by imitating.

8. The Principle of Opportunity: The Shaolin principle asks us to define our objective (goal) and not just one way (plan) to achieve it. It states us to have the ability to deviate from the plan when needed and to have patience because patience leads to success.

9. The Principle of Yielding: The Shaolin principle teaches us that the Soft triumphs over the Hard. Stiffness is the companion of death, flexibility is the companion of life. A tree that cannot bend will crack to the wind. The hard and stiff will be broken, the soft and supple will prevail.

10. The Principle of Superiority: The Shaolin principle teaches us to build a reputation so that people fear engaging in a fight with us. Draw the bow, but not to shoot. It is better to be feared than to hit.

11. The Principle of Letting Go: The Shaolin principle teaches us to approach each situation afresh. It urges us to recognize our biases because it clouds our judgments and it urges us to let go of tired and tested methods or preconceived solutions.

12. The Principle of Self-Knowledge: Shaolin principle urges us to learn, that everything you are and will become lies only within you.

"Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment" - Lao Tzu.

It also teaches us to free ourselves from praise or criticism from outside. Learning to deal with praise and criticism is an important quality.

13. The Principle of Community: The Shaolin Principle says that leadership does not mean power over others, but the opportunity to achieve a common goal. Leadership means responsibility, leadership means giving recognition and leadership means winning together. It also states that Self-Leadership is crucial, authority depends on inner attitude and good communication is key.

Here is the Book for your reference: