There is a psychological trait that many successful people seem to have in common – the growth mindset. This is the idea that intelligence and skill in any field, can be developed with the right amount of effort and desire to achieve.
In contrast, there is the fixed mindset. The concept of intelligence and skill being something you’re born with. Nature, not nurture.
The growth mindset doesn’t happen by magic, and of course adopting this mindset doesn’t guarantee you’ll become the next Elon Musk, Tiger Woods or Arianna Huffington. Research suggests however, that people who have the growth mindset are three times more likely to become successful than those with a fixed mindset.
Using the Growth Mindset to help you achieve
When you use the growth mindset, you’ll start to see problems in a different way. No longer are there barriers to your success; instead there are opportunities for you to learn and grow.
In the world of apprenticeships, this is especially true. You’ll start out as a beginner – someone taking their very first steps in a working environment. You’ll have to overcome new challenges every day, challenges that can be daunting, especially if you’re in a place surrounded by experts at their craft.
Show those around you how willing you are to learn, overcome challenges and leap out of your comfort zone - trust me it will be recognised. You may not get a medal, a raise or a week off work, but you might start to make a bit of a name for yourself as someone with drive who has the potential to achieve.
It’s about more than just you
Like it or not, your apprenticeship isn’t just about you. It’s also about how much you can offer to the business as well. Making yourself not only useful, but essential, is the best way to get ahead and stay ahead.
If you think you can’t offer anything just yet – think again. The growth mindset can help you to take in what you’ve learnt so far and apply it to the new challenges you’ll face each day. So long as you’re learning, you’ll make mistakes. The growth mindset can help you to be comfortable with these mistakes, and can teach you how to overcome them in the future.
Who the hell is this guy… and why should I listen?
So, you’ve taken on board what I’ve said (I hope!) but now you’re thinking who the hell is this guy; why should I listen to what he is saying? He’s obviously just googled some idealistic success traits to make himself look clever.
Well yes and no. Here’s why you should listen…
I used to have more of a fixed mindset, I was daunted by the abilities of others around me when I first joined the largest tech company in the north west (rentalcars.com), and at times I let this hinder my progression. So, what changed?
After adopting the growth mindset, I began to notice a change in how people saw me, and I saw myself, it was like a switch got turned on and I was no longer in the dark. My boss was really impressed with this change, so much so that he nominated me for a cultural education award. A few questions asked and a couple of months later I won the award, I was now labelled the most inspiring creative apprentice in the North west.
I am not the smartest, most talented or successful creative apprentice in the North West, yet I still won the award. My boss recognised a shift in my attitude towards new challenges and expressed this when nominating me. I believe that my attitude towards learning new skills, taking on new challenges, staying focused and making every day count was what set me apart from the other finalists.
A final note
A lot of self-help content comes from established CEO’s, billionaires and gurus, so hopefully some advice from a fellow apprentice is a nice change. I urge whoever is reading this to further research the growth mindset, there are a few 5-minute Youtube videos which are very digestible, listen to one on the way to work, take it in, then go out there and wow your boss!