I recently trained my leadership team on mindset. Specifically, what it is and how we can develop one that is useful. Here’s a summary…
What is mindset?
Mindset is the core beliefs or assumptions we have about a domain or category of things that orient us to expectations, explanations, and goals. Mindset affects the asssumptions you make about a domain – for example, do you view stress as debilitating and bad or motivating and good for you?
Mindsets help us simplify complex reality and distill down our core assumptions that shape and orient our thinking and action.
If you have the mindset that intelligence is malleable, you will be motivated to grow and learn and build from; this is a growth mindset. On the other hand, if you believe that your intelligence and personality are set in stone then you are operating with a fixed mindset; not good.
Do you we have one mindset, or many?
I believe you have one with many ideas that form your overall point of view. For example, I explained my mindset to my team by expressing them in the following way:
- Impossible is nothing, everything if figureoutable;
- Turn shit into sugar;
- Create new worlds;
- Leave things better than you found them;
- Give more than you take.
These tell you a lot about my overall mindset. They tell you a lot about of how I view stress and uncertainty, the future, my perspective on living.
Where does mindset come from?
Mindset comes from four main sources:
- culture & media;
- influential others in our lives;
- conscious choice.
The last one, I believe, is the most important because we can decided what ideas and beliefs we choose to adopt.
How can we learn and teach mindset?
- Be aware that you have a mindset: your view of the world is filtered through your framework, interpretation, expectation, etc..
- Think about the effects of mindset on life: is the mindset helpful or harmful?
- Seek ways to adopt a more useful mindset: seeking discomfort is good for the mind and soul, stress is natural and can help you learn and grow.
Bottom line: Mindset is everything. Mindset is what determines whether you succeed or fail. Mindset matters for leadership because it determines how you lead, how you influence people, the culture you’ll create and the opportunities you’ll pursue.