We have an image of ourselves. That image gets stuck in our heads and in our subconscious minds. Is it good? Is it bad? It doesn’t matter, that is who we are and how we see ourselves.
But what if we are in a mental prison created by our own beliefs?
Chip Conley is a New York Times Best Selling Author who has disrupted the hospitality industry twice. The first time as the founder of the unique and highly successful Joie de Vivre hotels. The second time, as the mentor of Airbnb’s founders; who were your typical tech guys but didn’t know anything about the hospitality business.
On a more personal side, Conley’s philosophy seems to be centered on life-long learning, or more precisely, what he calls ‘long-life learning’. At 60, he doesn’t believe his best years are behind him. He continuously works on himself and does what many would call ‘young people activities’, like learning to surf. He has a growth mindset and we can all learn from him.
Growth Mindset vs Fixed Mindset
Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck in Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, teaches us about our belief systems and how our behavior can shape our lives for better or for worse.
A fixed mindset is when we do things by always thinking about failure or success. The end result. Seeing other people’s success as a threat instead of drawing inspiration from it. A fixed mindset is limiting.
“In the fixed mindset, everything is about the outcome. If you fail — or if you’re not the best — it’s all been wasted. The growth mindset allows people to value what they’re doing regardless of the outcome . They’re tackling problems, charting new courses, working on important issues. Maybe they haven’t found the cure for cancer, but the search was deeply meaningful.” — Carol Dweck
The growth mindset, on the other hand, is focused on improving yourself. It’s about growing and learning. It’s about how to embrace challenges and enjoy the lessons learned from our setbacks. A growth mindset gives you the freedom to do anything you want. Because why not?
The passion for stretching yourself and sticking to it, even (or especially) when it’s not going well, is the hallmark of the growth mindset. This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives.
According to Consley, it’s all about being curious in order to constantly gain wisdom. He says ‘curiosity is the elixir of life’.
Opening your mind to different things. Seeing everyday things from a different perspective. Even learning about random topics can sometimes be what you need to break out of that mental prison. Forget about the fear. Forget about the outcome. Focus on the small wins and keep going.
You can do anything if you set your mind to it. Recognize and identify the patterns that are governing your life and dare to redefine them. Your life will always be a mirror or your subconscious mind. So why not use this to your advantage? It all starts within you.
If you believe you can do better. You absolutely will.
Do you see some patterns of behavior in your life that are holding you back? What are you going to do about it? Let me know in the comments!