I have a daughter who dislikes challenges. She’d rather give up than persevere. This is probably hugely affected by her sensory processing disorder and ADHD. How, I don’t really know. But I do know that she does not have what professor Angela Duckworth calls grit and author Carol Dweck calls it a growth mindset. Or at least it’s hidden somewhere.
And I’m worried.
She’s living with a fixed mindset. This is when you believe that people are either born smart or not; that talents, intelligence, and personality can’t be changed. But we know from decades of research that this is simply not true. Our brains are amazingly malleable, even as adults.
Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t need my daughter to get straight As or a perfect score on the ACT test. That’s not it at all. What I care about is my daughter’s life. Having a growth mindset is essential for a successful life. In all areas. (Although kids with a growth mindset do better in school than their peers without. Just saying. . .)
My heart’s desire is that my daughter starts to see her potential by adopting a growth mindset. I want her to believe she can learn anything, grow in areas of challenge, and work hard to solve any problem.
“If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning.” – Carol Dweck