Mindset : The New Psychology of Success – Book Report

Your thinking shapes your definition of success, failure, and effort. Success is determined by how people believe their abilities are fixed and hence choose to remain in their comfort zone and focus on proving it. A growth mentality focuses on learning and stretching. There’s nothing wrong with boosting confidence (Dweck, 2008. Perceiving yourself as special or defining your self-worth by your achievements is risky. You’ll start to worry about losing your sense of uniqueness. When things go wrong, we all feel horrible. Our response differs. Failures define people with a fixed perspective, so they give up or try to defend their image by hiding their flaws, assigning blame, or making excuses. An upset growth mentality sees the mistake as an occurrence and an issue to be solved (“I failed this time”). According to Dweck, people endeavor to discover their flaws, overcome obstacles, and find new ways to succeed.

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Main Points and Arguments of the Author

Dweck discovered a fundamental self-belief that guides and pervades practically every aspect of our life. It is the mindset. This belief either limits or empowers us. It distinguishes between excellence and mediocrity. It affects our self-awareness, self-esteem, creativity, ability to overcome obstacles, resilience to setbacks, despair, and tendency to stereotype. Mindset can either be fixed or growth orientated. A fixed mindset tends to resist effort because (a) it implies they’re not “special” enough, and (b) it implies their greatest effort will be inadequate. With a growth mentality, people strive for greatness and win as a result. According to Carol Dweck, your beliefs influence your ability to attain your goals. Dweck discovered that your thinking determines your success.

Carol Dweck identified belief power in her book. “They heavily influence what we want and whether we get it,” she wrote. People’s beliefs, even simple ideas, can be profoundly changed. A “fixed mindset” believes their intelligence or personality cannot change. They are more prone to focus on familiar tasks, avoid challenges, and be less resilient to failure. A “growth mindset” believes intelligence and personality are adjustable. They perceive challenges as opportunities to grow and learn. Examples include Lee Iacocca of Chrysler and Lou Gerstner of IBM. Both entered troubled companies and successfully turned them around. The distinction is in the aftermath.

A smug Iacocca surrounded himself with devotees and cared more about his image than the firm. To compensate for his low self-esteem, he made poor choices, such as sacking an innovative designer, which drove the corporation back down. Talent is everything to a fixed perspective. People without talents believe they will fail if they are not given with the talent to perform anything. Their skills, like their appearance, seem to be genetically encoded, which is why they never try to improve.

People with a growth mindset, on the other hand, feel that anything is possible if they work hard, dedicate themselves to their goal, and practice as much as they can. Because our thinking affects our performance, both are worth exploring. A stable mindset avoids tough situations. The longer you work on anything, the less reason you have to fail. However, Gerstner realized that IBM’s internal strife hampered teamwork and customer service. So he dismantled old hierarchies and became an employee to better communicate. He brought IBM long-term success by focusing on teamwork and learning from past mistakes. Michael Jordan, on the other side, was unstoppable in a world full of wealthy basketball players (Dweck, 2008).

A stable mindset avoids tough situations. The longer you work on anything, the less reason you have to fail. This attitude would have saved Christopher Reeve’s life after his riding accident left him paralyzed from the neck down. Instead, he fought hard for spinal cord research. He could now move his arms, legs, and even his top body. He eventually walked across a pool’s bottom. A growth attitude is surprisingly inherent. The author notes that babies have no boundaries and want to learn everything. However, between the ages of 1 and 3 a mindset is formed. Babies with a growth mindset strive to comfort other crying babies, while fixed mindset babies are disturbed. Aside from our parents, our teachers shape our perspective. Bad teachers tell D students they’ll never amount to anything. Unbelievably, they ace the next test.

A growth attitude is also learnable. Dweck says, “To begin, try this: When you spill your coffee, don’t blame yourself or blame clumsiness. Consider it a one-time occurrence and promise to do better next time. “I can’t undo what’s been done. Let me wipe everything up and be more careful next time.” So you may spend more time pursuing your dreams and less time fretting about your flaws.


In the classroom, growth mindset has gone awry in two major ways. A chart in front of the audience, a speech identifying the two mindsets, and then expecting the learner to behave is illogical. I think instead of only presenting the concept, Dweck should have implemented behaviors that promote growth and learning. Second, I think growth mentality is just appreciating effort. As stated before, it is not that straightforward. It needs everything else.

Mindset research could be criticized for overpromising and under delivering. I know millions have been spent on mindset studies. If this doesn’t work, the author’s study has wasted a lot of time. Even proponents of mindset acknowledge the concepts rapidly went viral. Any popular educational concept that spreads faster than science can catch up with the educational system. Leaders of the new generation of mindset research groups believe that Dweck thought growth mindset was a straightforward idea. “But then we saw how easily it could be misconstrued or misapplied. This means that nuances matter.

Regarding these methodologies, I contend that education is not the only field testing them as suggested by the author. Brief therapies for adolescent depression and anxiety require thinking methods as well. Mindset therapies are similar to cognitive-behavioral therapy, which gives people control over their ideas and behaviors. Mindset understanding is required for short interventions to produce significant improvements in both parent and youth-reported depression. However, concerned about the schooling backlash, I believe the author go well on them.

Implications of The Author’s Arguments

This book has taught me about hard effort and quitting. The fixed mindset hates hard labor and gets enraged when faced with it. Its first reaction is to quit, believing you will “look dumb” for trying. Knowing how the fixed mindset operates will help you stop it before it takes over your life. That is, you I be able to identify that my fixed thinking is holding me back from progressing. All I have to do is concentrate and work until I have achieved my goal. I will have no excuses to reach my goal. As previously said, understanding and controlling the two mindsets is the key to success. Every difficulty will allow me to grow. I will be fearless of failing and daring to succeed.

The book’s societal meaning is that a fixed-minded individual runs away from challenges, despairs quickly, and is threatened or intimidated by others’ achievement. This is because a fixed perspective sees intelligence and talent as “being” rather than “developing.” Fixed mindsets can be detrimental. Thanks to the book, I now understand that the brain can develop smarter if I have an open mind. I can do better in school because I am empowered to study. I can increase my grades if I focus on progress and consider work as a way to build abilities. I now see failure as a necessary component of learning.

Now I know Mindset is everything. Having the correct mindset can help me succeed in my career, establish my own business, get through a tough workout, or be a better parent. A fixed mindset implies our brains, character, and creativity are fixed. In essence, you are given a hand in life and must accept it. Believing in my qualities makes me want to keep proving them. A stuck perspective can stall a career. A growth mentality, on the other hand, assumes that I may cultivate my essential traits via effort. It assumes that everyone can change and grow with time. A growth mindset sees failure as a stepping stone to success. Mindset is a result of powerful beliefs. A growth attitude assumes that views can be modified when they hinder progress.


The key message in the book is that a development mentality recognizes change. The author advices that one’s task is to identify where you have a fixed mindset and strive toward a growth mindset. This book says we should seek growth, not approval. To cultivate a growth mentality, one must seek out and use feedback. What we value, what we want to achieve, who we want to become are all influenced by our beliefs. These mindsets can help people become more motivated and effective leaders, parents, coaches, business owners, teachers, and partners. Like people, we all have a mix of fixed and development mindsets that manifest at different times. In sports, today’s culture prizes easy success above hard work and being a “natural” is often touted. But, as great sportsmen like Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Michael Phelps, Mia Hamm, and others have shown, it takes more than talent to succeed. They excelled in their industries because to their dedication, perseverance, strategy, and more. It is possible that fixed-minded parents are fostering fixed-mindedness in their children by exclaiming, “You’re so brilliant!” and applauding them, rather than understanding the link between work, procedure, and outcome. To sum up, growth isn’t achieved by learning a few quick fixes. To be in charge of our lives, we must continually assess our thinking, seeing, and interpreting, and choose to use this information to transform, not constrain, our lives.

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