Mindset: The New Psychology of Success
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Mindset: The New Psychology of Success

4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  9,488 ratings  ·  1,270 reviews
Mindset is one of those rare books that can help you make positive changes in your life and at the same time see the world in a new way.

A leading expert in motivation and personality psychology, Carol Dweck has discovered in more than twenty years of research that our mindset is not a minor personality quirk: it creates our whole mental world. It explains how we become opt...more
Hardcover, 276 pages
Published February 28th 2006 by Random House (first published 2006)
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Joshua Guest
Okay, so the idea is fine, and usable, and easy to explain to others, and pretty simple. I was about to give this book a one-star rating because I was so irritated with Dr. Dweck trying to shoehorn her idea into every single success story in the history of humanity and try to say that her theory was the cause of that success. Conversely, every failure could have been averted but for a change in mindset. It was the Fixed mindset that caused the Chicago Cubs to never win a World Series. If only th...more
Michael
Excellent book. This one sounds like a typical self-help book, but it's a real find. The author is a pyschology researcher at Columbia, and her book is filled with insights and illustrations regarding the differences that a fixed mindset vs. a growth mindset can have when applied to business, parenting, school, and relationships. Her research has been highlighted in many venues, including an excellent book on parenting titled Nurture Shock.

I give it 5 stars because I can see so much of myself i...more
Stark
This is probably all i really need to hear out of this book, but i will read the whole thing anyway. there are two mindsets. fixed and growth.

Believing that your qualities are carved in stone -- the fixed mindset -- creates an urgency to prove yourself over and over. If you have only a certain amount of intelligence, a certain personality, and a certain moral character -- well, then you'd better prove you have a healthy dose of them. It simply wouldn't do to look or feel deficient in these most...more
Cerealflakes
I keep hearing educators praising this author and, specifically, this book. Maybe she's better in person. I found this book trite. It was very repetitive and full of cherry picked stories pulled out just to prove her obvious conclusion. Are there really people who think that if you go into something with a negative attitude it won't affect the outcome? She goes to the extreme with the positive attitude stuff, though. I just don't buy that anyone can do anything if they just try hard enough. Not...more
TeacherMrLoria
I'm starting to think most self-help books are pretty much the same advice. Here is my one sentence summary of this one: There are two kinds of people in the world, people who believe things are fixed, others who believe they can change through hard work and effort, so believe in the ladder and success will open in front of you! Heavy on the inspirational stories and antidotes, light on the data to support some of the arguments and essentially void of the how to.

I agree that the right attitude,...more
Mark Stuart
Here is a message to anyone close to me who may over hear me saying, 'I must read that popular psychology book ...', at some point in the future. Don't let me forget how vapid and uninspiring this book was. Please remark: 'don't forget about Mindset Mark!'

Let me try and save you some time by summarising (not sure if this qualifies as a spoiler, I guess not):

it is bad to think your skills and knowledge are limited.

This represents the fixed mindset. Rather, it is good to think to yourself:

if I wo...more
Otis Chandler
Recommended in Stanford Magazine and by Guy Kawasaki.

A very useful book about the growth mindset. Essentially, the book makes a case that those people who look at everything they do in life as a learning opportunity are much more successful.

I think where this comes into play most often is when we face a setback, or a failure. Whether thats getting rejected from something (a job, a team, etc), messing up at work, having your boss yell at you, losing at something, getting laid off, making a bad b...more
Alex
Another book that attempts to build upon the research of Anders Ericsson.

The way I read it, I would break the book into 3 parts:
Part 1: How people fail because they don't have the right mindset
Part 2: How people success because they have the right mindset
Part 3: You could also call this part 2a - it basically deals with children and success in school, home, etc.

The first part of the book was the worst. Its case after case of "this person tried to succeed and failed because he didn't have the rig...more
Mike
Carol Dweck’s Mindset: The New Psychology of Success is based on a deceptively simple—yet powerful—premise. The central distinction she draws here is directly relevant to any of us interested in teaching leadership. According to Dr. Dweck (a Stanford psychology professor), each of us adopts one of two mindsets about life: the fixed or growth mindset. People with fixed mindsets tend to see human potential as static and finite; people with growth mindsets see human potential as more dynamic and el...more
Neil Lynch
Walt Disney once said the best way to get something done is to stop talking about it and do it. Such a simple sentiment ought to be a no-brainer; and yet, how often have we let opportunities slip through our grasp because of the way we think, what we believe, or what we uphold as valuable?

In MINDSET, Carol Dweck shares her research on that particular part of the brain and how it affects the way we live our lives and approach our goals. Using powerful examples, Dweck shows how too much praise of...more
Jamie Doerschuck
I think a lot of people who rated this book highly must have had a "fixed mindset".

I think this book was a waste of money, personally. The tone of the book is very repetitive and annoying. Essentially people with a growth mindset are better than people without it in every possible way. If you have a fixed mindset you'll have lower grades in school, be unhappier, die earlier, be fatter, (be more likely to) never get married, make a bundle less money, you name it! It reads more like fear mongering...more
Jason
Jul 27, 2008 Jason added it
My dad had been talking about this book, so when we went to visit him and I saw it on his desk I started reading it. It made sense right away and was easy to get into. Your mindset (either a growth mindset or a fixed mindset) determines how you relate to your abilities and experiences in school, business, relationships, and sports (those are the areas she covers). I could see myself in both of the mindsets she described, and I think they're a useful tool for making sense of places where I strugg...more
Jeremy Borouchoff
This book was recommended to me by my Behavorial Economics professor at Alverno College. It was so contradictory to all of the New Age "affirm that you can and it will manifest in your life" crap that I had been exposed to for years and years that I absolutely loved it!

Why?

Not that I have any problems with affirmations, but it asserts that the single most important thing that most of the New Age gurus don't tell you is this: success takes work. Consistent, regular, dedicated WORK. Sure, affirmat...more
Johnny Trash
This is a book which the administrators in my organization are reading. I am reading it as well, though I'm not an administrator.

I am only on page 43 but I already have dismissed the ideas and the author as superficial. Written in a casual style (the author states in the introduction: "A little note about grammar. I know it and I love it, but I haven't always followed it in this book. I start sentences with ands and buts. I end sentences with prepositions. I use the plural they in contexts that...more
Alan Bevan
I struggled to rate this book. It offers a single gem of a concept - perhaps not particularly original but nevertheless really important. And that gem is that how we think about ourselves can make all the difference. Do we see ourselves to have a fixed capacity or do we have a growth mindset? It reminded me of my Dad who consistently frustrated me by never trying anything new on the grounds that he was not the sort of person who did X. He genuinely seemed to believe he was not free to choose. He...more
Jonathan Karmel
I read the first few chapters but then ended up skimming the rest. I absolutely agree with the author that it's better to have a growth mindset than a fixed mindset. It just seemed like the author made the point and then kept repeating it over and over again. I did think it was valuable to apply this principle to relationships (chapter 6); it's nice to have someone confirm that good relationships are a lot of hard work and that if a relationship requires a great deal effort that does not mean th...more
Kressel Housman
May 07, 2008 Kressel Housman rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everybody
The flap copy on this book promised it would be "a great book that will change your life." That certainly raised my expectations, and I'm happy to report that I wasn't disappointed.

The premise of the book is the basis of cognitive psychology: what you believe affects your whole life, so if you can change your beliefs, ie, your mindset, you can change your life. This book characterizes two mindsets, the fixed and the growth-oriented. The fixed is the more common one because that's what society te...more
Thomas
Great overarching concept, lackluster execution. In Mindset, Professor of Psychology Carol S. Dweck discusses the difference between a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. The fixed mindset focuses on immovable measures of achievement and ability, such as the idea that everyone is born with a certain amount of unchangeable intelligence. The growth mindset advocates that everyone can improve themselves in any area of life through hard work. Dweck argues that we should adapt the growth mindset beca...more
Becky Weaver
The premise of this book sounds pretty "duh." I ran across its title in several different contexts before I decided that if such dissimilar people swear by it, it can't be as obvious as it sounds. And its implications are wide-ranging and interesting. It made me see the world in a new way. It's entertaining and an easy read, and would be especially valuable to teachers, parents, and coaches, but really applies to pretty much everybody. Instead of subtitling it "The New Psychology of Success" (ey...more
Steven
Disappointing and repetitive pop-psychology book based on 1 idea that seems dubious from anecdotal experience. The author talks about the "fixed mindset" those who believe that traits like intelligence, personality, sports ability etc. are largely determined genetically and those who believe in the "growth mindset" that all traits can be fundamentally changed with enough effort, with the growth mindset being the path to success.

This is a false dichotomy. It's not an either/or (growth vs fixed mi...more
Dan
Mar 10, 2014 Dan added it
I thought I was getting a book on cognitive psychology for a general audience and wound up with self-help dreck. The title was repellant but glowing references from other books and positive reviews from seemingly smart.. oops... seemingly hard working people induced me to bite. Dweck's theory seems plausible but this book does a lousy job presenting and defending her big idea. If after seven experiments involving hundreds of children you have the clearest findings you've ever seen there is likel...more
Becky
This book made a profound change in my thinking. I recommend it for any parent, because it is important to know how to praise and encourage your children.

I learned why you shouldn't tell them how smart they are, but instead praise them for their effort and their hard work. They should learn to expect hard work in order to achieve.

I also learned that if you practice enough, you can become better in almost anything, and need not ever feel some people are "naturally talented" and that you are not...more
Becca Van Tassell
It's pretty bad when after 15 pages, I want to fling a book away in disgust. But I kept reading. (Okay, it turned into skimming pretty quickly). And it DIDN'T GET BETTER.

I've read several thoughtful and interesting pieces of journalism lately referencing the general thesis of this book that were really thought provoking. But the book itself is just empty tripe and cliches, without adding any content of interest to bolster the general idea that it's more important to foster a growth mindset over...more
Abi
When I encountered Dweck's research for the first time, in another book a couple of years ago, I had a "scales falling from the eyes" moment. It helped me change my internal life. Today, finishing this book, I reflect happily and with chagrin at how much more work I have to do to shift my mindset so I can grow to be the kind of person I want to be in the world.

Mindset investigates the difference between believing we are only as ______ as we are versus believing we are as _______ as we work to be...more
Roslyn Ross
1) The author begins by going on and on about how important she is and her ideas are. Which makes her sound insecure and let's me know she does not trust me to read her ideas and determine for myself whether they are good ideas or not.

2) I can already tell she is about to present one more panacea. I am going to put up with it just to hear what she has to say about parenting and children but this "mindset" sounds like the concept of self-esteem by a new name or focusing on one character trait of...more
Daniel Hovland
Mindset is based on Carol Dweck's work regarding Fixed and Growth Mindsets. People with a Fixed Mindset believe that intelligence is static and cannot be changed. What you have is what you have. People with a Growth Mindset believe that intelligence is malleable and can grow through experience and effort. dr. Dweck shares her findings of how people's fixed or growth mindset impacts how they learn, their attitude about their capabilities and how they experience the world around them. Her work is...more
Elena

Maybe 3.5 stars I wavered between 3 and 4 and was influenced by other reviewers.

I read this book as it was discussed at a few faculty meetings in my building and I was intrigued... And I recognized myself in each mind set too. I really think it is very helpful and an interesting way to open your mind about how to help yourself grow, and how to help your children grow (both as a parent and a teacher). I'm no stranger to the idea of praising the effort, the process and helping encourage meeting c...more
Lee
As much criticism as this book gets, I dispute that it's "vapid" or "trite". That old adage that "Common sense isn't so common" applies here. Yeah, it's full of some pretty obvious clues into how we can motivate people into becoming more open to learning and working hard, but a lot of people go their whole life not knowing the power of hard work and perseverance.

She points out the inherent flaws in our society, and I think she does a pretty good job at it. In many of her scenarios I found myself...more
Ken Fontenot
Every teacher, parent, and coach should read this book. This book is exactly the book I've been looking for for the last few years. It deals with motivation, psychology, giftedness, and more. It will make a profound difference for me in my teaching, perhaps even my life. The concept is simple: people either have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset, but the ramifications of this are far-reaching. Dweck's book is based on many years of her own research as well as the research of others. She shows...more
Sarah Clark
This book provides a great overview of the a dichotomy of two mindsets: a fixed mindset and a growth mindset. Exploring this through various lenses, such as business, personal relationships, childrearing, coaching and education, Dweck shows how a growth mindset can be cultivated in oneself and in others through very small ways. Just by changing how you praise someone can make a huge impact on how much they are willing to work for something and how they view their own abilities and potential. Tel...more
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Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D., is one of the world’s leading researchers in the field of motivation and is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford University. Her research has focused on why people succeed and how to foster success. She is particularly known for her work on how self-theories (or mindsets) affect learning. She has held professorships at Columbia and Harvard Univers...more
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“Did I win? Did I lose? Those are the wrong questions. The correct question is: Did I make my best effort?” If so, he says, “You may be outscored but you will never lose.” 30 likes
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