The Power of a Growth Mindset

Many of our members will tell us about the event that made them realize it was time to start exercising. A game of tag with their kid, some not-so-great news from their doctor, a holiday marred by pain. We’ve heard it all.

For Alastair Wilkinson, it was three days of physical agony after 2.5 hours of home renovation work. That was about a year ago. And that’s when he joined Bomb.

But that was the easy part. Like many new people who walk through our doors, Alastair was pretty green. His first few classes were a harsh reminder that he was starting from scratch in terms of strength, endurance and form. For a lot of people, this would be about the time they give up. But rather than being discouraged, something inside him sparked and he was excited to learn. He recognized if he kept coming in, listening and applying himself, that he would get stronger. And he has! Not only is he crushing it in class, he’s also started taking kettlebell (a class that might have killed him a year ago) and he’s lost 25 lbs too!

What I realized as I was chatting with Alastair is that he has a growth mindset. He understands that he’s not limited to the skills and talents that he developed easily and naturally. That with continued effort and practice, he can learn new things and improve his abilities in any area.

A growth mindset is the difference between facing a challenge and saying “I can’t do that” and “I can’t do that now, but I can learn”. It can be applied in any circumstance and it’s something that all highly successful people have in common.

So, how exactly do you achieve a growth mindset? The internet is full of lists...Ten Steps to a Growth Mindset, 25 Ways to Create a Growth Mindset etc, etc. I’m not an expert, but from my perspective it boils down to prioritizing the process not the outcome. Focusing your energy on the work, turning failures into learnings, persevering and trying new tactics.

In the age of instant gratification and results-based rewards, it can be pretty hard to apply yourself to something difficult and big goals often seem too hard to reach. But the process is always within your grasp. The first step can happen in an instant and with a growth mindset the experience becomes the reward.