Growth mindset for champions in boxing

Growth Mindset: With the right mindset to success

Conor McGregor - one of the best mixed martial arts fighters - is known for his unbelievably great self-confidence and his irrepressible will to always give the best and to accept every challenge and to be successful at the most. Growth Mindset is a way of thinking that will help you grow and succeed. We'll tell you how to do this in this post.

Have you ever heard of the term growth mindset? Growth Mindset - also known as growth thinking - is a way of thinking that not only gives you healthy self-confidence, determination, more power and strength. It's a mindset that makes you more productive both mentally and physically. That will make you grow beyond yourself and make dreams come true. Growth Mindset can be illustrated by the example of Conor McGregor - one of the best MMA fighters of his time, who is known for his eccentric advertising appearances.

Admittedly, his strong self-confidence and his extroverted manner are not for everyone, but he always manages to pull people under his spell and literally infect them with his self-confidence. But what is its secret? How does he manage to be mentally strong and focused? What force drives him in one of the toughest sports in the world, in which you have to be incredibly strong not only physically but also mentally to be the best?

In an interview he once said: “There's no talent here, this is hard work. This is an obsession. Talent does not exist, we are all equal as human beings. You could be anyone if you put in the time. You will reach the top, and that [is] that. I am not talented, I am obsessed. "

So there is no talent for Conor McGregor, just hard work. It wasn't talent that got him out of unemployment. It also didn't help him fight a multi-million dollar fight against Floyd Mayweather. In his opinion, it was iron discipline, mental strength and perseverance that made him a confident, strong-willed and successful person. Success begins in the head - that is growth mindset.

You will now find out what exactly is behind it and why and how growth thinking can help you too.


Where does the term growth mindset come from?

Did you know that growth mindset is not just a term, but that there is a research-based model behind it? It was discovered by the American psychologist Dr. Carol Dweck, who is known as the “discoverer” of the growth mindset.

For many years she worked at Columbia University as well as Harvard and Illinois before moving to the famous Stanford University in 2004.

In 1988, Dr. Dweck a model for the first time to show the influence of different ways of thinking. Perhaps you have already experienced that you only achieved a certain goal because you believed in it. You left no doubt, always had your goal in mind until it finally became a reality.

The fact is: Everyone has a very specific way of thinking that shapes their self-image. This mindset can make the difference between success or failure and, more importantly, it determines how you deal with new challenges, tasks and problems.

In her model, Dr. Dweck clearly between a static self-image (fixed mindset) and a dynamic self-image (growth mindset). In her opinion, mindsets can be either performance-based (achievement goals) or learning-oriented (learning goals).

With a fixed mindset, the result and the associated success play a major role. For example, success depends on good grades in school - there is no other way of thinking for these people. The result counts, nothing else.

However, anyone who pursues a learning goal and thus has a dynamic self-image (growth mindset) will accept any challenge - no matter what effort it takes. Not with the aim of getting good grades and achieving the best performance, but with the endeavor to become better, to grow personally and mentally and to acquire more knowledge.1 You can certainly imagine who will come out on top in the end.

In later studies, Dr. Find out something else of interest. How how we think about ourselves can have a huge impact on our actions. For example, someone who thinks they are not good enough or not quite as smart will not believe in their success in the first place. However, those who are convinced of themselves and their abilities and have a healthy self-confidence will accept any challenge and will be able to deal better with failures.

How we think about ourselves and our mental performance seems to have a great influence on our motivation and our handling of challenges and failures. To support her theory, Dr. We love to work with children. For example, she gave them tricky tasks that they had to solve, increasing the level of difficulty each time until the tasks were unsolvable for the children.

Many children responded with it Stress. They were annoyed, upset and demotivated, which is why they preferred to focus on an easier task rather than solving the difficult one. Other children behaved very differently. They didn't bury their heads in the sand. On the contrary: They even enjoyed the fact that they had to look for possible solutions. They were neither overwhelmed nor stressed or demotivated. Nor did they shy away from asking for help because they wanted to learn something. The fact that they could not solve the difficult tasks on their own did not matter at that moment.

What happened? Why were the children's reactions and approaches so different? Dr. Dweck in her 2006 book "Mindset: The new psychology of success".

Challenge for a growth mindset

What mindsets are there according to Dr. Dweck?

You have already learned that the American psychologist Dr. Dweck differentiates between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. People with a fixed or growth mindset are fundamentally different. But in which points do they differ exactly?

Under the term "Fixed Mindset" you understand people who do not allow themselves to be dissuaded from their way of thinking. They are firm in their beliefs and are more likely to spend their time moving around in an area they know and are familiar with rather than trying something new. This way, you don't make mistakes and you don't have to face any problems or face new challenges.

As a result, they cannot fulfill their lifelong dreams, precisely because they shy away from new tasks and fear the fact of making mistakes. People with a fixed mindset believe that talent and intelligence alone bring the desired success. You are performance-oriented - if you fail to achieve your goal, it is because you are not talented or intelligent enough.

As soon as they fail or face obstacles, they give up quickly. These people cannot deal with criticism any more than they can with the admission that they have to accept help from others. Often out of fear of not appearing intelligent enough or even of being weak. They are just as intimidated when other people are more successful than they are. And how are people with a growth mindset?

For people with one Growth mindset intelligence and talent are rather secondary. They believe that with dedication and hard work, they can achieve their goals. They know that success depends on their perseverance, which is why they don't get discouraged - even when there are obstacles in their way. Constructive criticism spurs them on, as does a possible failure. Sentences like: “You can't do that!” Do not exist with them.

set goals and overcome obstacles People with a growth mindset are always looking for ways and means to achieve their goals. Thus, they are constantly developing, which also leads to them becoming more flexible, stronger, smarter and more efficient. They develop into optimists and at the same time build a positive self-image. Effort, hard work, and discipline are the essence of a growth mindset that sooner or later leads to success.

The success of other people is by no means viewed critically or viewed as a threat. On the contrary: They use other people's intelligence to expand their awareness, get inspiration and learn something new. For them, the path to the goal is a learning process that is also associated with failures or mistakes. Instead of describing themselves as stupid or untalented, people with a growth mindset strive to acquire new knowledge and thus continuously develop themselves.


Growth Mindset or Fixed Mindset: What Do Studies Say?

People with a fixed or growth mindset seem to react differently to feedback or constructive criticism. Studies in neuropsychology make this clear. With the help of an imaging process, researchers tried to find out to what extent fixed and growth mindsetters differ if they were confronted with the respective result after a previously carried out test. How do people with a fixed or growth mindset deal with constructive criticism?

After evaluating the test with the participants, they were given feedback on their performance and the solutions on how they could do it better (learning feedback). With this learning feedback, they could actually have answered the questions correctly in the second attempt. Then after a while there was another unannounced surprise test. In their study, the researchers first found that both groups, i.e. both the fixed mindset participants and the growth mindset participants, concentrated on the performance achieved.

However, it was surprising that the Fixed Mindset participants disregarded the learning feedback and thus failed again in the second test.2 The growth mindset participants, on the other hand, knew how to use the learning feedback, which is why they were able to improve on the second attempt.

In another experiment, the researchers tried to find out why the participants with growth mindset paid more attention to learning feedback than the fixed mindset participants by recording the electrical activity of the brain using an electroencephalography (EEG). With this method, they were able to identify a neural mechanism - a so-called Pe amplitude - which signals conscious attention here.

Since the Pe amplitude was much more pronounced in the growth mindset participants, the researchers hypothesized that the growth mindset participants paid more attention to the learning feedback and were therefore better able to implement it than the fixed mindset participants.3 That would also explain why the growth mindset participants were also able to complete the second test of the aforementioned study much better.

It is also interesting that with a growth mindset you can compensate for negative emotions that are caused, for example, by failures, unexpected problems or criticism. Incidentally, this is not the case for people with a fixed mindset.4 This is shown by a recent study. Therefore, researchers assume that the transformation into a growth mindset could have an effect, especially with perfectionists, in order to be more satisfied and more balanced.5


What does growth mindset mean for sport?

In the meantime, the theory of different mindsets and the associated possibilities have even arrived in the sporting field, even if Conor McGegor is currently the best-known example of a growth mindset.

Although there are already many studies on this topic, there still seem to be many critical voices that question the theory of the growth mindset. Not entirely unfounded - after all, scientists have not yet really been able to prove exactly how a growth mindset is created.6

Perhaps the growth mindset is only viewed somewhat critically because there are not so many studies on this topic that describe the development of the growth mindset in detail and make it understandable and applicable for everyone. on Basis of the approaches and studies presented here (especially the studies by Dr. Dweck) could possibly provide a little more information in future research results.

If you look at top athletes, the effect of the growth mindset becomes particularly clear. These people work hard to continuously improve and develop their athletic performance in order to become mentally and physically stronger, faster and fitter.

These athletes do not let setbacks stop them. Quite the opposite: Motivation increases with every defeat. You will then work even harder on yourself and look for solutions and new challenges in order to improve your performance and thus be better than other athletes or at least at their eye level.

Another example of a growth mindset is an extraordinary athlete who made a big footprint in basketball. We're talking about Michael Jordan, one of the best basketball players of all time. In his book "Relentless", the author and trainer at the time, Tim Grover, reports on an exceptional talent who did not want to leave anything to chance.

In 1989 - just at the beginning of his career - Tim Grover applied to every Chicago Bulls player as a personal trainer with an application in every locker in the locker room. However, he did not send an application to Michael Jordan because he was already the best player on the basketball team and - so Tim Grover suspected - possibly had a personal trainer. Interestingly, only one athletics coach called him back on behalf of a single player. It was Michael Jordan, whom he hadn't really considered at all.

But what prompted Michael Jordan to contact Tim Grover? Presumably, the desire for more power and better performance was so great that Michael Jordan wanted to use every opportunity to improve personally and athletically.


How can I use Growth Mindset and what can I learn from it?

Everyone can use Growth Mindset for themselves - including you! Even if it sounds easier than it ultimately is to consistently pursue your goal, to accept the help of others and to use constructive criticism as motivation, a different way of thinking can definitely bring you further. The journey is the goal - not the result. Intelligence and talent are good - hard work and perseverance are better for going above and beyond. Do you have problems with your motivation? Like you Overcome listlessness you can read here at the Academy.

When you deal with the growth mindset, you should always remember that setbacks and defeats say nothing about a person. On the contrary: they only make you stronger. You are neither stupid nor untalented if something doesn't work out the way you imagine it would. So don't be afraid to take on seemingly impossible challenges.

Learn from your mistakes to do better next time. Challenges help you develop further, although you shouldn't be discouraged by defeats and failures.

Conor McGregor and Michael Jordan are two good examples of athletes who have internalized the growth mindset. If you ever doubt yourself and your abilities, just stick with Tim Grover. He once said: "The difference between criticism and feedback is how you take it."

[1] / faculty-staff / pugh-kevin / dweck_leggett88.pdf


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