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Mindset and achievement

Achievement is usually a byproduct of having a growth mindset. The main aim for someone with a growth mindset is to learn and grow, they create learning goals.

This means that someone adopting a growth mindset will seek to gain a deeper understanding of a subject, rather than shallow knowledge in order to look good or pass a course, for example.

In Mindset, Dweck comes up with a number of powerful examples of people who have succeeded in life through effort, determination, good teaching and effective learning strategies. The basketball player, Michael Jordan is a good case in point. He is often seen as a 'natural' but, according to his coach, Jordan did not show a great deal of promise initially but persevered, trained harder than anyone else and particularly worked on his weaknesses. Dweck argues that one of the great ironies about mindsets is that fixed mindset people are often desperate for success to prove how clever and talented they are, however since they often lack good learning strategies, and are easily stressed by failure, they often don't get to the top. In contrast, growth mindset people are often less fixated on achievement but are more likely to get there. She writes: 'The top is where the fixed mindset people hunger to be, but it's where many growth-minded people arrive as a by-product of their enthusiasms for what they do.' In short, growth mindset people are enthralled by the learning process, not the destination. If they get to the top it is an added bonus not the point of their engagement. 
 
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