I loved this article the US Masters Swimmer magazine that references Stanford University professor Carol Dweck. Her research mentions people fall into two categories:
- People who think their ability doesn’t change much.
- People who think their abilities can be developed and changed.
She called the former a “fixed” mindset and the latter a “growth” mindset which you can read about in her book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.” In working with athletes as a coach, I find this to be especially true from my own personal experiences.
Dweck noticed people with the growth mindset tend to perform better and keep their motivation longer. Sometimes we all need to work on breaking our fixed mindset. As a person who loves science, I love these four high level tips you can use to develop a growth mindset in your training:
- Turn everything into an experiment.
- Analyze what didn’t work when you don’t achieve your desired outcome and what you may need to do to improve your next attempt.
- Remember everything is data.
- Learn the power of the word “yet“. This could be one of the most powerful ways to overcome a fixed mindset, for example a swimmer might think, “I’m not a good kicker yet,” rather than, “I’m not a good kicker.”
Good Luck Out There!
-Coach Dan, Training To Race