A growth mindset transforms writing into a journey of discovery. As a reader, i can often sense if an author is exploring the topic or simply reporting what they know. When I feel that the authors understanding has deepened in the course of writing, i enjoy reading even more, no matter what the subject. Traveling the path together is more interesting for everyone. Heres the good news: while you might have a natural inclination to adopt a fixed mindset, you can change. Scarcity The preschoolers in Walter Mischels study on self-control inhabited a world of marshmallow scarcity. They could not access an unlimited number of sweets, and made decisions based on the concept that the treats were a finite and precious resource.
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Stephen King describes his general approach in his excellent memoir On Writing : I have never demanded of a set of characters that they do things my way. On the contrary, i want them to do things their way. He discovers where the characters take the plot. Authors with a growth mindset start researching and outlining without planning everything in advance. They learn as they proceed. They take risks, and are resilient when their efforts dont pan out. Nonfiction authors consider the act of writing as a path to learning, deepening their understanding of a subject rather than simply reporting what they already know. In her essay why i write, joan Didion confesses, i write entirely to find out what Im water thinking, what Im looking at, what I see and what it means. She clearly approaches her art with a growth mindset. When you engage with the subject before you have all the answers, you may find unsuspected connections, uncover different facets of the topic, and even change the direction or structure of the piece. Although these diversions may consume more time, the resulting work is often better, and the process of writing more fulfilling.
Youre more likely to have a healthy relationship with editors, remaining open to feedback without seeing it as a sign of weakness. Mindset also affects creativity. The fixed mindset shuts down exploration and discovery. You wont want to start an outline until you have all the answers at hand; for some people, that means that the work never gets done. The risks inherent in creative leaps become too great if they endanger your sense of self. A growth mindset leaves room for creativity. For many fiction authors, the details of a plot only develop as the story appears on paper.
Of course, you understand that you can learn and improve. But when faced with a challenge, you may suddenly hear the voice of the fixed mindset whispering that you are not good at the task and are likely to fail. Listening to this belief limits your willingness to take on challenges. Without faith in your ability to grow, you become risk-averse. For people caught in a fixed mindset, failure damages the sense of self. A fixed mindset is particularly dangerous when writing, as it inhibits your ability to learn from constructive feedback. You bristle at corrections or suggestions; criticism feels personal. With a growth mindset, setbacks and criticism become learning opportunities—painful, perhaps, but necessary.
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We might approach a financial negotiation in one way and family relationships in another. Each decision could be appropriate for the context. Growth, mindset, how do you respond when asked to do a task that you havent tried before, such as creating a full-length book or a script for a video? Would you attempt it? If the result needs major reworking, how would you feel about the effort as a whole?
Your response to challenges and setbacks depends, in part, on your sense of yourself when considering the work, and whether you inhabit a fixed or growth mindset. Carol Dweck, are a professor of psychology at Stanford University, describes these alternatives in her book. Mindset : The new Psychology of Success. Put in basic terms, people with a fixed mindset tend to consider their talents or abilities as set, inherent parts of their beings. Those with a growth mindset believe that they can develop abilities through learning and work. While it sounds simple, mindset can be subtler than it seems.
We collaborated with researchers from the University of Chicago who had a longitudinal project with videotape of mother-child interactions. What we found was the more praise was process-oriented—not a ton, just where the greater proportion of the praise was process praise versus outcome praise—the more those children had a growth mindset and a high desire for challenge five years later, when they were. via flickr, todays guest post is an excerpt from. The Writers Process by, anne janzer ( @AnneJanzer ). As a product of the human brain, writing is particularly influenced by emotions, moods, and worldviews.
This post is about creating an internal environment conducive to writing. The term mindset refers to a set of acting assumptions and attitudes that affect behavior; more broadly, a mindset is a filter through which we view the world. Culture, surroundings, and upbringing each influence our perspectives significantly. Yet we can alter or adjust our mindset, as a photographer changes the filter on a lens. There are two mental settings that are particularly relevant for writers: Fixed or growth mindset, abundance or scarcity mindset, these binary, a/B choices oversimplify reality. Mindsets are fleeting, changeable states. Neither setting is inherently right or wrong.
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That child is developing a fixed mindset, even if the parent has a growth mindset. But if the parent reacts to a childs failure as though its something that enhances learning, asking, okay, what is this teaching us? Where should we go next? Should we talk to the teacher about how we can learn this better? That child comes to understand that abilities can be developed. So, with praise, focus on process umum praise—focus on the learning process and show how hard work, good strategies, and good use of resources lead to better learning. Be matter-of-fact, with not too strong or too passive a reaction. You can see evidence of fixed mindset as young.5 or 4 years old; thats when mindsets can start becoming evident, where some kids are very upset when they make a mistake or get criticized and fall into a helpless place. Thats when children become able to evaluate themselves.
You want them to know when to ask for help and when to use resources that are available. All of this is part of the process that needs to be taught and tied to learning. Gross-Loh: Is there a right way to praise kids and encourage them to do well? Dweck: Many parents and teachers who themselves have growth mindset arent passing it on because they are trying to protect the childs confidence, focus on the childs ability, and kind of boost the childs view or protect the child biography from a failure. Theyre conveying anxiety about ability. But we have a new line of research (with my former graduate student, kyla haimovitz) showing that the way a parent reacts to a childs failure conveys a mindset to a child regardless of the parents mindset. If parents react to their childs failures as though there is something negative, if they rush in, are anxious, reassure the child, Oh not everyone can be good at math, dont worry, youre good at other things, the child gets it that no, this.
effort created learning progress or success. Gross-Loh: What should people do to avoid falling into this trap? Dweck: A lot of parents or teachers say praise the effort, not the outcome. I say thats wrong: Praise the effort that led to the outcome or learning progress; tie the praise. Its not just effort, but strategy so support the student in finding another strategy. Effective teachers who actually have classrooms full of children with a growth mindset are always supporting childrens learning strategies and showing how strategies created that success. Students need to know that if theyre stuck, they dont need just effort. You dont want them redoubling their efforts with the same ineffective strategies.
They also believe that talent alone creates success—without effort. In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment. Virtually all great people have had these qualities. Teaching a growth mindset creates motivation and productivity in the worlds of business, education, and sports. Mindset, youll see how. The mindset ideas were developed as a counter to the self-esteem disadvantages movement of blanketing everyone with praise, whether deserved or not.
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Every so often a truly groundbreaking idea comes along. Mindset explains: Why brains and talent dont bring success. How they can stand in the and way. Why praising brains and talent doesnt foster self-esteem and accomplishment, but jeopardizes them. How teaching a simple idea about the brain raises grades and productivity. What all great ceos, parents, teachers, athletes know. Mindset is a simple idea discovered by world-renowned Stanford University psychologist Carol Dweck in decades of research on achievement and success—a simple idea that makes all the difference. In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them.