Thursday, November 12, 2020


 Your human teenager’s human performance in any field is defined and limited by their self-esteem or self-image - what they believe they’re capable of – or NOT capable of.

 That self-image is a MINDSET.  Mindset defines performance – but also determines if and how they will grow – or fail to grow – to plateau, to remain exactly where your teen is now and always!! J L 

 Mindset is an attitude - a habit of thought. How do we build an attitude?  Same way we build or install any habit – REPETITION and REINFORCEMENT.  But be careful!  If that repetition is not progressing toward the final product we want, we are creating mediocrity!!

 And that’s where Carol Dweck’s GROWTH mindset enlightens us. The GROWTH mindset is the belief that we are capable of learning or performing better.  This mindset is crucially important – because many of us, unconsciously or unintentionally fall into that CLOSED mindset of “that’s all s/he is capable of – they can’t do any better.”   We do it to ourselves, we do it to others and worst - we sometimes do it to our teens.

 This is a common human problem: - we are our own worst critic. We also criticize our teenagers – when they need positivity THE MOST! If your teenager is criticizing themselves, saying they’re no good or dumb or just can’t get it - it's up to you to help them to seek out and find and LEARN FROM – where they fell short or failed – and get them back in the IMPROVING- not quitting -game!!!!!

These are the crucial points:

(o) find what/ where they fell short,

(o) compliment the good they did and

(o) help, enable, encourage them to try again – the sooner the better!!

 Strengthen or re-strengthen or reinforce their good.  And to use the lessons of Carol Dweck and mindset – ASKING “what did you learn from that mistake or setback?”  DO NOT LECTURE.  They will often be negative about themselves – which is where YOU come in – GUIDE THEM in searching, finding the lesson it taught!!!

 The core element in building an open mindset is constant positivity: always maintaining a positive attitude, regardless of the depths of any setbacks. The core elements of that open mindset are the belief and the perception that it's all there for Learning and growth and advancement and strength. We all tend to see setbacks that we caused as our weaknesses. Everyone has them and does them.

The key issue is to listen, accept, validate and then ask your teenager what they learned from this setback. And you might remind them that the greatest learnings occur from mistakes failures and setbacks - not from what you did right! That's the gold medal. Value, treasure and use every negative instance that your teen experiences – TRULY VALUE IT because that's the only thing that builds untapped potential.

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