Basketball and Growth Mindset

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Mindset
Ivy Bridge

Jami S. Opp

February 9, 2013

PSY 320

When I speak with people I am able to see that we all have a different way of coping with problems. Some people have a growth mindset, in which they feel that they are able to succeed. Others have a fixed mindset, in which they feel they are unable to succeed at anything, even if they try their hardest. What is the difference in the diverse mindsets? When you have a fixed mindset, you believe that “your qualities are carved in stone” (Dweck, 2007, pg. 6). Someone with a fixed mindset is always trying to prove themselves over and over again (Dweck, 2007). Let’s take my situation with basketball for example. I played one year and decided that I was too short to play on a team. I had heard that short people couldn’t play well. I didn’t think I was capable of being on a team, and I decided to quit playing all together. Another person may not have coped with this failure in the same way.

Having a growth mindset allows one to keep trying. “Growth mindset is based on the belief that your basic qualities are things that you can cultivate through your efforts…everyone can change and grow through application and experience” (Dweck, 2007, pg. 7). People with this mindset believe that you cannot predict what a person is capable of. If we look at someone else (with a growth mindset) who was told they were not good enough to play basketball, they would react differently. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, but that did not stop him. He became a well-known basketball player for the NBA that people looked up to. If I had his mindset at a young age, who knows where I would be now!

People with a fixed mindset do not cope well with failure. They may get down on themselves and not be able to work through problems. This type of mindset sometimes has long-term effects and may lead to depression. People with a fixed mindset feel that a challenge is...
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