Howard Zinn People's History of the United States

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Thread: Fixed Versus Growth Mindsets - Society or Psychology?

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  1. #1
    Ideas bounce around in my head Jason's Avatar
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    Oct 2016
    Nashville, TN

    Fixed Versus Growth Mindsets - Society or Psychology?

    I was on a plane recently (yes, I know COVID-19), and a woman came walking down the aisle reading a book that had the word "mind" at the end of it. Turns out the book was entitled "The Naked Mind" which is a book that she claimed would change my views on alcohol. As we talked a bit, she recommended another one, titled "Mindset - The New Psychology of Success"by Carol Dweck, (c) 2007. I couldn't find the first on my Kindle Unlimited in time before the flight took off, but the latter was available on Audible. So, I downloaded it with the few minutes of internet I had left and started to give it a listen. Fair warning, the voice over talent (Bernadette Dunne) is not very good - very robotic and lacking much in giving the narration any life, BUT...

    The content turns out to be very interesting. I ended up pausing and taking notes for the first few chapters so far. In essence, the premise is based on the principle of two mindsets we have as humans: a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. The writing cites both studies and anecdotes illustrating that a growth mindset is the one worth cultivating, whether your focus is on improving your relationships, your career, school, and even parenting.

    At times the writing seems kind of hokey, and very "self-help" in its overtones. However, the underlying themes are very intriguing, and I find the overall purpose beind the book interesting enough to keep reading/listening. I can only take about 20-30 minutes of it at a time because of the narration. What is most striking to me so far is the argument that it's not a binary sort of thing where we as humans are either one or the other, but that we are a combination of both.

    Knowing that there are quite a few academics here, I'd like to hear from others who have read this and get their thoughts on the writing. Do you agree with Ms. Dweck's conclusions? What are your thoughts on the entire work? Have you read anything else that falls under this umbrella? What category would you put this book into?

    Other questions worth considering: is this fixed versus growth mindset something that all of us experience? What constitutes awareness of which mindset is dominant for us? If discernible through self=actualization, can we change it ourselves, or do we need external forces? Of course, another alternative would be that this is not a binary sort of thing either, that it could be a little of both all the time.

    Would love to hear others thoughts on this, whether you've read the book or not
    Last edited by Jason; 03-10-2020 at 07:03 AM.
    2018 Goals
    Read as many more of these books as I can - (minimum of another 25 roughly)
    Come up with a good book idea and actually write it!

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