Lately I’ve been reading about fixed vs. growth mindsets (see Carol Dweck’s work referenced here). What Dweck found was that high performance is not born in us, but ability to perform at high levels is. And if we are groomed to embrace that we can achieve great things, our performance will excel and continue to blossom as we face greater and greater challenges.
Whereas, if we are told, and firmly convinced that we are bad at a task and stuck in who we are and where we are – fixed – then we will remain as such, most likely giving up when faced with a challenge and will never grow any higher than where we are right now. But, if we are given the opportunity to fail and fumble a little, and then ultimately success, we can see that we can grow and adopt the growth mindset. However, it doesn’t just happen at the flip of a switch or through a simple exercise. The process to change from the fixed to the growth mindset can take some time. This is where yoga can help.
No one naturally knows yoga postures. We come in as beginners, each of us, and learn the poses and continue to fail and falter. But with persistence and coaching, success results. The amazing thing about the physical aspect of a yoga practice is that it bleeds over into the mental aspect of our lives. Through the persistence falling and getting back up to try again and again and again, we learn and we grow in our physical and mental capacity.
Which mode of thinking do you migrate towards and which will you choose for the rest of your life?