“Failing to plan, is planning to fail” Winston Churchill.
With all due respect to Mr. Churchill, many of his victories came from and with failure. Likewise, life has taught many of us that a plan is helpful, but certainly not fail-proof. Most current research and conversations in education, corporate leadership, psychology, and parenting are sending a completely opposite message! Success of any kind requires us to take risks and fail at times, and growth will only happen when we learn how to work through those failures.
Growth Mindset and Resilience:
Ask any young person and they will likely be able to give you an expert definition of Growth Mindset, point you to videos, and even be able to recommend some good books on the topic! For adults, and even as an educator for 15 years, I still have to do research on this topic just to write a blog paragraph. Growth Mindset is the belief that skills and intelligence can be improved with effort and persistence, and is necessary to develop lifelong learners, and resilience to work through difficult situations. There is a reason that this is such a hot topic and it is important that we take note. Growth mindset has never seemed as critical as it does right now. Especially post-pandemic, we have a group of young people that are struggling with mental health issues at staggering levels, working to regain footing in their academics, and re-learning how to socialize and build friendships.
Living out our Jam Hops Mission:
Our Jam Hops Mission is to “intentionally focus on developing the character and self-esteem of kids. We believe in helping each child become a LIFE CHAMPION!” Raising young people truly takes a village! Our Jamily is constantly striving to come together in encouraging the growth and well-being of our young people. Here are just a few ways we can build a foundation together in creating a community for our young people to thrive!
Encouraging Growth Mind-Set:
Practicing changing the messages we give ourselves and our young people has a major impact on motivation, resiliency, and ultimately on success.
Recognizing, Praising and Rewarding Effort & Growth:
Acknowledging people for effort and growth instead of ability or skills, creates an environment of healthy risk taking and success. This kind of praise is also incredibly motivating and empowering because our effort and growth are in our control, while there are many outside factors that can impact our ability, skills, or performance. Praise based on ability, skills, and performance creates a moving target, a fear of failure, and striving for perfection. Here are some ideas and examples of praise to foster a Growth Mindset.
Model Failing and Learning:
Showing failure and mistakes is not in my nature, and certainly doesn’t fit many “words of wisdom” I received growing up. However, I am slowly learning how to take on a growth mindset and fail forward instead of getting stuck. By being vulnerable and allowing others to see our flaws and mis-steps, we can create an environment that promotes fearlessness, resiliency, and shared success.
Think about how your 2023 New Year’s Resolution might be different this year if we work from a Growth Mindset and plan to fail along the way!