Career and Life Success Guide: Growth Mindset

Relationship ManagementProfessional Foundation

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Growth Mindset
The belief that you can improve upon your abilities and change your perception of success through practice, effort, and continuous learning.

How career-ready are you? Choose the Growth Mindset level that best describes you. To progress through the levels, select the action steps that seem most appealing and useful to you. Complete as many as you’d like and consider repeating any that you found particularly helpful. Before you know it, you’ll stand out and be ready for your next career step.


I am aware that through failure, growth is possible. However, I sometimes struggle to see how this applies to my own life. 


I can reflect on how my past failures have assisted in my growth and I seek to understand my views on failure; but I may not have fully integrated this awareness into my actions. 


I am willing to risk failing to do something I want to do. I believe that through effort, risk-taking, and failing I can grow and develop my skills and abilities. 


I regularly take risks and can effectively manage my aversion to failure. I recognize that without these risks, further growth in my skills and abilities will not come. 


**Note: Although taking risks is an essential part of personal and professional growth, the type and level of risk you take may look different depending on your situation and values. 

"Having Growth Mindset, the belief in yourself and the ability to follow through on your goals despite setbacks are critical ingredients to your success." – Consolidated Electrical Distributors

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)  Action Steps

  • Make time for reflection: What do you enjoy? What are you curious about? What challenges you? Are you heading in the right direction, or do you need to consider changing course? 
  • Try something new or challenging, such as a class or outside hobby. Clubs can be a great venue for engaging your curiosity. Join a club that interests you, but also consider attending club meetings that are outside your comfort zone. Doing so can help you to gain insight into diverse perspectives and increase your self- and social awareness. 

  • Attend an Emerging Markets event to learn about a new career area or industry. Networking with panelists can also offer unexpected opportunities; don't be afraid to pursue them. 

  • Didn't get an opportunity you hoped for? Work with a Career Counselor to reframe a recent setback as a learning experience. Not only will you grow as a person, but you can leverage your self-awareness in your internship and job search. 

  • Ask for constructive feedback from a professor or supervisor at your internship or part-time job. Seek feedback from individuals with diverse perspectives. Mentally prepare yourself to really listen to how you can improve.  

  • Open up about your failures to others. Friends, classmates, and your campus community can support you and provide resources. Being vulnerable with others also helps deepen your bond with them. 

  • Do you find yourself feeling jealous when others achieve success while you're struggling? Practice celebrating others' success in the face of your own setbacks, and recognize that success will look different for everyone, depending on their life circumstances and opportunities. 

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