Dweck: Reflections and Responses on Our Growth Mindset and Perspective
In a Psychology Today article titled “The ”Growth’ Mindset” published on September 22, 2016, award-winning Author Carol Dweck noted that “…addressing one’s feelings and regrets is natural for anyone. However, when it comes to living with regret, it is important to be mindful of the problems that cause such feelings, because if we focus on the problem, not the person, we are more likely to overcome the problem.” Her article states that “sadness is one of the most powerful emotions; it can be very seductive to those who try to ignore it, for those who try to sabotage emotions that are already deep, and know very well that their resistance will lead to more feelings, or worse, set them up for an eventual tragedy. That’s why it is important to not be afraid of acknowledging, accepting, and working through sadness.”
Dweck is an internationally known expert in the psychology of organization, teaching professionals for more than 30 years and being recognized by the World Economic Forum as one of the Women Who Shape the World. Her notable academic body of work includes Psychological Dimensions of Performance and Leadership, Cognitive and Affective, Emotional and Neurobiological, and Therapeutic Organization. Dweck’s leadership and contentment research has been featured widely in schools, curricula, management education programs, publications, and more.
Interview with Carol Dweck, Northwood University
Dweck’s perspective regarding the growth mindset is the last piece in a three-part interview with Dr. Dweck. Before the initial interview in the spring, Dweck shared her thoughts on reasons to have a growth mindset and the efficacy of the concept. In September, Dweck spoke at Northwood University about her research, and the conversation surrounding the growth mindset.
It is important to note that while Dweck’s philosophy is that strong and powerful emotions are good for motivating, convincing, and motivating others. Those people who try to avoid those emotions are at a greater risk of self-delusion, making them less likely to work effectively and emotionally.
“…one important thing I’ve learned about growth is that it is not so much about devising a plan to gain. It’s much more about cultivating a mindset. You have to live life that your action and your choice is less important than the choice you make about yourself. I think that having a growth mindset is fundamentally different from a perfectionistic mindset in a very crucial way.”
Dweck’s point of view does not veer towards the concept of doing less than your best. Rather, it centers on the idea that there is no responsibility for the choices you make about yourself.
Dweck on A More Thoughtful Working Environment
“…Leaders also need to begin to set clear, old-fashioned, executive expectations. The most important one is that they start to realize their team members, especially junior ones, are not their children. They are not their nephews, and they are not their best friends. And when they feel their team members are not there for them, they are unhappy. And they are far more likely to look for outside help.”