Mindset – a PhD student’s review

What is the book about?

book "Mindset" lying on wooden desk.
The book “Mindset” by Carol Dweck

This book by Carol Dweck is about mindsets and how they affect your life. Basically, it differs between “fixed” and the “growth” mindset and illustrates how each one defines your actions, especially your handling of mistakes.

The fixed mindset can be really bad and it’s very common. Society unfortunately nurtures this mindset: Good results which did not need any effort are prefered to good results for which you had to work your ass off. The problem is you don’t learn from your mistakes and might even hide them.

The growth mindset is the opposite: You place your focus on the effort, not the results. That way, you embrace the mistakes you make, learn from them and stay flexible. Also, you see mistakes not as stains on your ego, but as possilibties to learn.

Why is “Mindset” worth reading?

This book changes the way you perceive yourself: My key learning was, that one can have both mindsets at the same time:

  • I enjoy sewing very much is due to a growth mindset: I seek difficult project, which I can only manage when accepting imperfection.
  • I frequently got stuck in fixed mindset when it came to my PhD project. The fear of failing and not being good enough was often paralizing. Now, after realising this, I’m able to advance.

Probably, you also have both mindsets at the same time. This book can help you realise which part of your life is governed by which mindset. It also describes, how you can shift your mindset from “fixed” to “growth”.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below.

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