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The Biggest Mindset Shift I Ever Made

The Biggest Mindset Shift I Ever Made

January 16, 2019 10:55 pmComments are Disabled

I spent all day today attending a leadership summit from the fantastic folks at RRE Ventures and it was great.

This one slide (of which I snuck a discrete photo) is so spot on it’s scary, and largely reflects, in my view, the biggest difference between people who are succeeding in their careers and those who are stuck.

In my experience, it’s all too common for someone to come to a job knowing everything they know, and failing to learn anything new for the duration of their (ultimately short) employment. I call this ‘smartest kid in the class’ syndrome because it’s very common with naturally intelligent people who have never had to work that hard to make it through school and often to their first job, but at a certain point, the training and experience becomes more important than natural intelligence. It’s then that the “smart kids” either sink or swim based on their mindset.

I know this, because I had this very syndrome and struggled to break out of the mindset for many years. I would wonder why coworkers who were less smart than I was were getting promoted when I wasn’t, why my ideas weren’t being adopted on my say-so alone, and why no matter how hard I worked, I wasn’t actually making a difference.

It wasn’t until this all clicked that everything changed. With a growth mindset, there are no limitations on your abilities, only patience. And things that seemed like setbacks before are actually just opportunities to get better. When your best friend gets promoted at work and you don’t, it’s not a conspiracy. It’s because your friend is doing something you’re not. What is it?

The situations are the same, but the frame of mind changes everything.

These days, when I see colleagues in their early careers struggling to get to the next level, it’s almost *always* because of a lack of this crucial perspective. The universe doesn’t owe you a promotion, but you can get better and get one for yourself. Own it. And do it.

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