People’s attitudes fit into one of two categories:

  • fixed mindset
  • growth mindset

A fixed mindset attitude believes you are who you are and you cannot change. In a fixed mindset, people believe their basic qualities, like their intelligence or talent, are simply fixed traits. They spend their time documenting their intelligence or talent instead of developing them. They also believe that talent alone creates success—without effort. They’re wrong. A fixed mindset person has problems when they are challenged because things that appear to be more than they can handle often overwhelm them and make them feel hopeless.

Alternatively, in a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. People with a growth mindset believe they can improve with effort. This makes them happier because they can more easily handle difficulties. Since they are willing to embrace challenges, they outperform those with a fixed mindset. They treat those challenges as opportunities to learn something new.