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Embrace Growth Mindset Thinking

Embrace Growth Mindset Thinking

Have you ever called yourself an idiot, or worse, when something didn’t turn out as planned?

Stop that! An outcome doesn’t define you or your worth.

The growth mindset looks at an unfavorable outcome as a learning experience, not a failure. It’s ok to feel upset, but it’s never ok to berate yourself.

Need to nail that pitch? Reach out to someone whose work you respect and ask for advice. It can be as simple as asking for tips on how they prepare to deliver a killer pitch. Most people love to help. If you don’t ask the answer is always “no”.

If you put in the effort, challenge yourself and stay resilient when things aren’t going the way you hoped – it will pay off. The growth mindset will help you focus on improving. A fixed mindset will make you focus on being judged.

Ask any professional musician, speaker or athlete if they still work on improving their craft.

Spoiler alert – the answer is yes. So, never stop learning and don’t compare yourself to others – learn from them and create your own style.

I’ve heard people at the start of their career say things like “Oh, I could never do that” or “I could never be that good” while observing someone who has invested years and thousands of hours practicing whatever it is they’re doing.

Be mindful of where YOU are in your own career or journey. Rather than comparing yourself, identify one or two areas where you’d like to improve. Make a list of all the ways you can enhance the knowledge or skill you you’ve identified.

Workshops, classes, and seeking a mentor are just a few ways to expand your knowledge. If you’re on a tight budget or tight on time, online classes and audio books are a great option. Instead of checking status updates on your phone, listen to or read something relevant to your goal – every tidbit of new information will increase your confidence and expertise.

Best of all, it’s the perfect way to train yourself to choose the growth mindset.

What are you working towards? Let me know in the comments below.


Shift Your Mindset for a Kick-Ass 2018

Shift Your Mindset for a Kick-Ass 2018

Shifting your mindset sounds like a secret Ninja skill. What does it mean?

According to Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., Author of Mindset: The New Psychology of Success we either have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset.

In the most basic terms, people with a “fixed” mindset believe we’re all born with a specific set of traits and intelligence that can’t change. In contrast, people with a “growth” mindset believe our intelligence and talent can change and grow through our efforts and experiences.

The fixed vs growth mindset gave a name to patterns I saw in my own family. The dramatic impact mindset had on their life gave me a first-hand look into the future. More on that in a later post.

For now, Let’s focus on one way to shift to a more productive mindset.


Better Done than Perfect


It might not seem like it, but perfectionism works against you. As a recovering perfectionist and workaholic, I can tell you that working an unhealthy number of hours to make everything perfect is a bad strategy. It leaves you drained and prone to errors. Without self-discipline and hard deadlines, perfectionism soon turns into procrastination and burn-out.

In my case, I had a twisted mantra that said the only thing worse than death was mediocrity. It created a mentality where every little thing had to be perfect and nothing ever felt good enough. I held myself back by not putting out work or ideas that felt less than perfect.

According to Dweck, the fixed mindset creates a need to prove yourself to others time and time again – a common trait of perfectionists.

A growth mindset always open to learning understands that ten good ideas that can be implemented right away are always better than one idea that took a year to perfect.

A closed mindset drives you to create unrealistic expectations that keep you from starting or finishing your most important goals.


Striving for excellence is different than making perfection the end goal.


Know the difference and keep yourself in check. To do this, find an accountability partner and create an actionable plan. Meet on a regular basis to review your progress.

Your accountability partner should be supportive and able to give you productive feedback while establishing realistic milestones. Commit to completing action items within the established timeline. Nothing will change if you don’t do the work.

If this is the first time you’ve worked with an accountability partner, look at it as a great foundation for building a growth mindset. Stretching yourself by trying something new definitely falls into the mindset you want to adopt. The more you do it, the easier it becomes.

If you feel yourself becoming nervous or self-conscious in a new situation – remind yourself that you’re in a learning situation and perfectionism is not your friend. Allow yourself to be a student, keep an open mind and know that you are changing your mindset. And then, congratulate yourself.

I’d love to hear from you – what do you want to change this year?

Valentines Day Mindset

candy-heartsNo, I haven’t completely lost my mind. I know Valentines Day is over, that’s actually the point of this post.. The flowers are starting to fade and wither and the cards and gifts are already becoming a distant memory. So what are you doing to keep the Valentines Day mindset?

For one day of the year, as a nation, we focus on our loved ones. Everywhere you turn there is an abundance of hearts and flowers, candy, cards, and gifts of every kind. All attention is focused on the special person in your life. The next day we wake up and perhaps start to fall back into old habits. The “I love you’s” and sugar coated sentiments are behind us and “real life” comes back into motion. Why?

Our relationships like anything else in our lives are victims of habit, good and bad. Habits are much like an addiction – defined as something we can’t stop doing. All of the days, months and years we spend thinking and acting in a certain way eventually get programmed into our brain – literally. We create neural pathways that can lead to habitual negative views and reactions to our loved ones. Ever have the same old arguments with the same old results? You feel yourself falling into it, your head tells you to stop yet you can’t, you get sucked into the energy of the moment and go down that well traveled path to nowhere.

Is it possible to stop? Yes, most definitely. You will have to work at it though. Just like that well worn path, it took a long time to become that way and it will take focused effort to move it in a new direction. It may sound cheesy to some, but visualization – also known as “mental rehearsal” can work miracles. It’s a well documented tool used in training athletes for peak performance. That peak performance isn’t limited to sports or physical activity; it can be anything you want to achieve – including a better relationship.

Try visualizing the desired outcome to your age old argument. What is it that you would love to say (that’s positive) if you weren’t caught up in the moment of the argument? How would you like to see your partner respond? What would you say in turn? See it in your mind, and let yourself feel the emotion as if it were really happening.

Keep repeating this process every chance you get. You are literally changing the neural pathways of your brain. Practiced consistently, the next time you start to engage in that same old argument, you will have developed new patterns of thinking and a new response. Done faithfully, you will end up with your desired result.

Remember, you need to change the way you are feeling, thinking and responding. The goal is NOT to change your partner. The change will occur when you change YOUR pattern of thinking and reacting. It’s a great way to keep the Valentines Day mentality going all year long. Reprogram the bad habits with good ones, your relationship could depend on it.

The only constant is change

It’s that time again..Time to figure out what worked in 2008 and enhance it and figure out what didn’t — and change it.. That’s the mindset you have to adopt as you go into 2009. I know you’ve heard it before, but if you really want to see different results, you’re going to have to do different things. Sometimes, just the act of making one small change opens new doors and starts a whole new pattern of thinking.

I’m sure you’ve noticed some changes to this site. I’m in the process of updating it and working on a new layout and content that will hopefully provide you with the tools you need to start 2009 on a positive note. I know it’s been a tough year for many, but what you do right now will be critical to what happens next year. This holds true both personally and professionally.

I’ve decided to update this site over time rather than trying to get it perfect and unveil a brand new site overnight. Life usually doesn’t work that way. It’s a series of small consistent changes that most often leads you to something new and exciting. Start today. Go do that thing you’ve been putting off, who knows what exciting new things it will lead to..


Dear World,

Please let today be the first day of our journey into a brighter era. That the last eight years has been difficult is a gross understatement. Rather than focus on the past and what went wrong, I’d like to focus on a brighter future.  I want to wake up on November 5th knowing that we are capable of true change, and creating a deep and powerful bonding and healing of our people and nation.

As someone who grew up in the midst of forced busing, I’ve experienced a first-hand and very frightening view of racism at it’s ugliest. For those that have never encountered it, I don’t know that I can ever adequately explain how it changes and haunts you. I’m sure it’s what’s fueled my life-long quest for equality, self-improvement, empowerment, and the American dream for each and every one of us.

I’ve loved watching Senator Obama bring people together. At the end of his speeches, as the camera pans the crowd I’ve been moved to tears to see the diversity of his supporters. There’s something powerful about seeing the hands of people coming together to shake his- they are the hands of all ages and ethnicities banding together for our future, and the beginning of a new era.

Please take a moment to watch this video, it really is worth the time.