Developing a Growth Mindset

20 Oct 2023
3 min read
Author – Vedika Jogani

A recent graduate from Ithaca College with a Master’s degree in Sports and Exercise Science, specializing in Mental Performance, Vedika is OMP’s Product and Content Manager. During her studies, Vedika worked closely with Ithaca’s Men’s and Women’s Tennis Teams and Women’s Volleyball Team as their Mental Performance Consultant. Vedika is currently completing her Certified Mental Performance Consultant Certification.

In the world of high performers, a profound truth emerges – the ability to transform failures into steppingstones toward success.

Arguably one of the greatest athletes of all time, Michael Jordan gives us an insight into this mindset with his timeless quote, “I have failed over and over again, and that is why I succeed.”

Dr. Carol Deck, an esteemed American Psychologist sheds light on this mindset in her work, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success.

Through her book, she introduced the pivotal concepts of fixed vs growth mindset, ideas that have seeped into the realms of education and sport and have become guiding principles for personal and professional development.

What is a Growth Mindset?  

A growth mindset is all about believing in the power of hard work, effort and feedback to develop your abilities and intelligence.

Think of it as seeing challenges as exciting opportunities, setbacks as temporary hurdles and effort as the key to mastering new skills.

Failures? They’re just the steppingstones on the path to learning.

Research conducted by Ng (2008) suggests that there are neural connects between having growth mindset and intrinsic motivation.

This kind of mindset allows individuals to embrace challenges, persevere in the face of setbacks, see effort as a path to mastery and view failure as a learning.

Individuals with a growth mindset can lead to higher achievements, increased motivation and a more positive attitude toward learning and personal development. 

How Can Athletes Develop a Growth Mindset?  

1. Commit to Lifelong Learning 

Embrace every chance to learn, both on and off the field.

Don’t hesitate to approach coaches and teammates for valuable insights and resources. Cultivate a spirit of curiosity that fuels your enthusiasm for acquiring new skills and tackling challenges.

Stay open-minded and proactive, recognizing that every opportunity to learn is a step toward personal and athletic growth. 

2. Persevere in the face of setbacks 

Embrace setbacks as valuable chances to learn and grow.

Take the time to analyze what didn’t work and explore different approaches for next time.

Welcome feedback as a guiding light, illuminating the path to personal development. Always remember, it’s not a loss; it’s a lesson, a catalyst toward your ultimate success. 

3. Challenge Your Beliefs, Skills and Knowledge 

Recognize and confront any rigid beliefs that might hinder your growth, ensuring a continuous journey of skill and knowledge enhancement.

Transform your inner dialogue from self-doubt (“I can’t do it”) to unwavering confidence (“I can”). Embracing this positive mindset is the key to unlocking your full potential. 

4. Celebrate Effort, Not Results 

Recognize and celebrate the dedication and hard work you invest in your tasks and goals. Understand that effort is a vital component of your journey, irrespective of the result. By appreciating your continuous commitment, you honor the process and pave the way for future achievements. 

In the world of sports, growth mindset is not something you master overnight; it takes consistent effort and time.

Athletes, just like anyone else on a journey of self-improvement, need to stay open to challenges and always be ready to learn and grow. So, keep on embracing the journey.



Read more related blogs below


To start your journey to an improved mental game and to get access to hours of content from some of the best minds in sport, download the Optimize Mind Performance App now.


For the Organization

Get in touch with our sales team to get your organization involved today.


For the Athlete

Download the Optimize Mind Performance
app today.