Do you know that your mindset, the way you look at things, can make a huge difference to your success at Taekwondo and in life generally – and that you can control it?
Stanford University Professor Carol Dweck suggests that our mindset can either actively promote our learning and moving forward in life – the growth mindset ….or work against us, stopping us learning and holding us back – that’s the fixed mindset.
People with a fixed mindset often feel more anxiety as they believe that their abilities come naturally, so are fixed. They prefer to look for opportunities to show what they are good at right now, rather than tackle the things they find difficult. This isn’t due to laziness, just an inborn sense that they’ll never be any good at their weak areas so it’s a waste of time trying.
People with a growth mindset believe that although some skills are difficult right now, they can learn them and be successful if they work hard and persevere. They find time to practise their weak areas whenever they can, monitor small changes and gradually grow their ability.
Taekwondo is the perfect activity to develop a growth mindset. Most of us face challenges in one area or another – the obvious areas are developing the ability to jump and break boards. We can all achieve those things when we adopt a growth mindset.
Learning Taekwondo is a recreational activity. It’s also an amazing learning experience that can instill a growth mindset. It shows us what we are capable of doing when we put in the time and effort. It’s a lesson that once learned stays with us for life and impacts on our entire future.
Encouragement and praise are an important part of developing a growth mindset. We recognise high achievement and success, and so we should. But consistent effort to improve and small steps forward deserve praise too and give the encouragement needed to keep going.
If you want to see examples of growth mindset in action, just look at your branch instructor. He or she has been where you are now, that’s why you can believe them when they encourage you, praise you, offer honest feedback and tell you, ‘You can do this’.
|Fixed Mindset||Growth Mindset|
|1. Ability||I am what I am,
my ability cannot change
|I can learn to do more than I can do now, I can grow my ability|
|2. Focus||I accept my limitations and work on what I’m good at||Growing and developing new ability matters to me|
|3. Effort||I should be able to do things well NOW.||My effort and persistence to gain new skills are vital for my success|
|4. Challenge||I would rather not try than look foolish||I persevere no matter what|
|5. Feedback||I hate feedback and don’t take it well||I get as much feedback as possible|
|6. Mistakes||I hate making mistakes||Mistakes mean I’m learning what not to do|
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