Mindset Moment: April

Change your words… Change your mindset!

Henry Ford once said “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right!”

This sets up April’s topic of self-talk. Brock and Hundley say, “Our inner voices are constantly buzzing away in our brains, and psychologists have discovered that what the voices are saying can have an impact on our success or failure.” We all have an inner monologue running in our minds. This is referred to as “self talk”. These thoughts help to organize our thinking, regulate our behavior and develop our self-awareness. This becomes very important for all of us, particularly in the developmental years. I always tell my students that your brain believes what you tell it!

It is only natural for negative thoughts to sneak into the minds of all of us! We all have a fixed mindset that tries to creep in. However, there are ways to combat this! First we teach our students to identify their thinking. When we discussed fixed mindset thoughts, we give them examples such as: “I can’t do this”, “I’m not good at math”, or “I’m not smart”. We categorize these as negative. I like to give them a fun name like Negative Nelly, Debbie Downer or my personal favorite Stinkin’ Thinkin’. We then teach kids that if they realize their self-talk is negative, they have the power to change it!

We talked a few months ago about “the power of yet”. By changing “I can’t do this” to “I can’t do this yet” we move it from stinkin’ thinkin’ into more of a growth mindset view. This is a mental conversation every child needs to learn how to have with themselves. Here are a few examples. Instead of saying, “I’m not good at this” try thinking “What am I missing?” Instead of saying “I fail. That didn’t work” try thinking “Plan A didn’t work, on to Plan B.” When we make a few simple changes to the “voices in our heads”  a student’s outlook can change entirely!


Coming in May “Growth Mindset in Sports and the Arts”

Check out these videos for more information: Positive and Negative Thinking or a new Growth Mindset Music Video