My yoga instructor (honestly, if you’re stuck for blog ideas, take a yoga class) began the session this week by
discussing willpower. It’s that time of January where people feel their willpower start to slip. This week was the day where most people give up on their New Year’s Resolutions. Just sit with that for a moment. Most people give up their goals and vision for a whole year after just over a fortnight. About 1/24th of the year. Does that sit well with you if your willpower is waning?
Back to what my yoga instructor was saying and about willpower. It is a major predictor for success. Angela Lee Duckworth talks here about how grit, passion and perseverance can predict academic and professional success.
What I found really fascinating from my class, was that my instructor stated that willpower is an even bigger predictor for success than IQ (true) and that IQ was fixed. NOOOOOOO!!!! If we know anything from Carol Dweck’s mindset work it is that intelligence really isn’t a fixed attribute. Believing that you can grow in any skill or in intelligence is what leads you to try, to take risks, to be ok with failing. I was recently introduced to this quote and I love it:
“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.” - Thomas A. Edison
If you’re not prepared to accept those failures as part of your inevitable journey, then you search for ways in which you can validate your skills rather than develop them. Which might be holding you back more than you know. For instance, if you knew that you could learn anything, what would you go out to do?
Next week’s blogs will feature some ideas for you to overcome your fixed mindset, but in the meantime I’ll leave you with this really accessible work on mindset.