Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation

There are just two key mindsets, and the one you have defines your success


How successful you are depends on a complex combination of circumstance, privilege, hard work, luck and talent.

But your mindset might also have something to do with it, according to Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck.

She claims that there are two mindsets someone can have – and whether you have a ‘fixed’ mindset or a ‘growth’ mindset could determine how you deal with difficult situations or evaluate your life. 

A mindset, according to Dweck, is a “belief about oneself and one’s most basic qualities” – and if yours is fixed, it basically means you think that talent, intelligence and other traits are innate and can’t really be changed.

Those with a ‘growth’ mindset, however, believe that base factors like talent or intelligence can be improved through hard work or practice. 

Having a ‘fixed’ mindset can also impact your relationship to yourself or others – because you’re less flexible, obstacles can feel insurmountable and are therefore left unchallenged. ‘Growth’ mindsets recognise, however, that “setbacks and feedback aren’t about ability, they are information you can use to help yourself learn” – and also realise that romantic partners or friends are often flawed and are allowed to be imperfect.

If you’re worried you might be of the kind of unappealing ‘fixed’ slant, don’t worry – Dweck says everyone is “a mixture of fixed and growth mindsets”, so you can always work on areas you find challenging.

And if you want to find out where you sit on the scale, you can take a test on Dweck’s website here.



People who lounge around the house naked are actually smarter


Apparently you'll make better decisions if you look at this picture


Masturbation breaks at work are good for you, apparently


Show this to your boss - science says napping makes you happier


Here are the reasons why people stay in miserable relationships


Your life actually flashes before your eyes when you die, says science


The science of a broken heart


A story saying Big Ben will be renamed for Muslims has upset idiots

Winding up racists - never not funny

by Dave Fawbert
21 Aug 2017

13 facts about cheating all couples need to know

Number one fact: Don't do it

by Gary Ogden
21 Aug 2017

Londoners have revealed their favourite and most-hated Tube lines

Which is your favourite line?

by Dave Fawbert
21 Aug 2017

The 10 most liveable cities in the world have been named

Did your home make the cut?

by Tom Victor
21 Aug 2017

Sir Bruce Forsyth has died aged 89

The legendary presenter has died aged 89

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

The biggest stereotype about men and sex is actually a load of rubbish

We've been wrong this whole time

by Gary Ogden
18 Aug 2017

Discover the words that became cool in the year you were born

Were you born in the year of booty calls or cybersex?

by Emily Reynolds
18 Aug 2017

This German town came up with a genius way of humiliating neo-Nazis

Is this the best possible way to deal with them?

by Alex Finnis
18 Aug 2017

Donald Trump’s lawyer: possibly not racist, definitely not intelligent

Oldest trick in the book

by Tom Victor
17 Aug 2017

The 10 worst cities in the world to live in 2017

To put your first-world problems into perspective

17 Aug 2017