Book of the Month: Mindset
At Libro.fm we believe in the power of online communities.
We’ve all seen people, separated by geography, come together to do amazing things on Twitter, blogs, and forums. With this in mind, we’re selecting a Book of the Month each month.
Every month, we’ll focus on a particular book and generate discussion on our blog and social media around it. Think of it like an online book club that lasts all month long. We’ll pick books from all walks of life and all genres, mixing up fiction with nonfiction, and all of the subcategories therein.
First up, we’ve selected Mindset: The New Psychology of Success by Dr. Carol Dweck, a book that I’m very excited to discuss. I’m also especially excited that we will offer Mindset at 60% off the retail price, throughout April.
Mindset is the sort of book that I’ve been hearing about for years, one that I’ve always meant to pick up. When my friend and colleague Tracy Cutchlow wrote about Mindset for The Huffington Post, the post went viral, racking up more than 212,000 likes on Facebook. As the publisher of John Medina’s Brain Rules for Baby, I received more feedback about Mindset than any other topic. Po Bronson, author of NurtureShock, wrote about it for New York Magazine. It’s the most read article in the history of the magazine. Clearly there is something to this book and Dr. Dweck’s research.
Dweck believes that people possess two types of mindsets: fixed or growth. Those with a fixed mindset believe that talent is innate, that people are either good or something or not, and if they are not, they have failed. People with a growth mindset, however, believe that steady dedication will see results. These people love a challenge because it is just that—challenging. They do not believe in inherent intelligence or skill. Not only are people with a growth mindset happier and more satisfied than those with a fixed mindset, but they are better at achieving their goals too.
And yet, Mindset hasn’t acquired that household name that some other psychology books have.
Going into Mindset, I had it in my head that this was a parenting book. After all, Dweck’s fabulous TED Talk is mostly geared towards parents and teachers. In it, she speaks about disadvantaged kids and whole schools who were able to shoot to the top of their studies when these same kids were encouraged and “praised wisely”—that is to say that they were praised for their work, not their intelligence.
I don’t have kids myself, but thought maybe there were some ideas in Mindset I could extract for my own purposes.
I quickly discovered that while, yes, this is a parenting book (there are several great ideas in here for parents), it is so much more than that. Dweck covers coaches, teachers, athletes, CEOs, musicians, artists, and, in the end, every ordinary person who reads her book. Take the following audio clip, for example. Dweck examines confidence and uses the real-life examples of athletes to demonstrate her points.
Over the course of Mindset Dweck illustrates how to respond to others in order to encourage a growth mindset, as well as how to think about things in one’s own life.
Even if you are already in a growth mindset, you can still learn something from Mindset. But if you are in a growth mindset, I don’t have to tell you that. You know that there is always something to be improved upon; there is always room to grow.