Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

Parent Category: Resiliency Reader eNewsletter Category: Winter 2015 - Resiliency Reader Index
Carol Dweck - Mindset book cover

How we can learn to fulfill our potential 

Carol Dweck, PhD
ISBN: 978-1400062751
Hardcover: 288 pages (other versions available)

© 2006
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I love this book. There were lots of "aha" moments while reading it. What struck me immediately is how the book demonstrates how we set the tone of life experiences with our mindset, and how different types of mindsets will respond to challenges and the unfamiliar differently. Is your mindset fixed on successes and failures or is your mindset fluid with growth and development? Once you reach your "success," will you stop your growth? It is unlikely. Recognizing the existence of a growth and development mindset shifts the paradigm in your response to life's challenges. It solidifies the resiliency skills of curiosity, lifelong learning and open-mindedness without judgment. Dweck states, "Mindsets frame the running account that's taking place in people's heads" and, "They guide the whole interpretation process." This thought aligns with my previous and current discussions on our how we respond to our circumstances. To me, this is fundamental and foundational to us and our connections.

Dweck also states in her book that, "The growth mindset is based on the belief in change." This belief in change and how we respond to it is the basic premise of the book. In the Oregonian newspaper some years ago, I clipped out an article with the title, "Perpetual change, continuous upkeep." I cut it out because it struck a deep chord in my soul and I still have it today. Each day you wake up is a new day and you as an entity or organism require continuous upkeep along with upkeep of your skills and intelligence with the idea of continuous development or growth.

I like how the book embraces several levels of intelligence and emotion and presents the potential for growth and development at each level. It sends the message that if you are interrupted in a goal or are perceived to fail reaching a goal, it can be re-framed to be a growth mindset of "not yet" or "not there yet." Setbacks or goals not yet achieved are just another stepping stone in the learning process for growth and development. I love the book's propensity for positivity, bouncing back, potentiality and resiliency in each individual. It is an absolute feel-good-about-yourself book.

(Review provided by Molly Siebert, ASRC Director)

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