How do you find yourself responding when things go wrong? Do you react in an unhealthy way? Do you see a disagreement or dissolution as a failure?
We know that intelligence is important. We also know that 99.99% of the people on this planet want to be right (or not wrong). If we are not careful, we often find ourselves reacting in ways that are more damaging than not.
Responses are habitually based in the moment and the majority of us often don’t take into account the relational consequences of what we say and do (at least not all of the time). They rise up from a survival temperament, and typically, represent a defensive approach. However, if we allow ourselves to breathe and evaluate how we want to counter (before we react), chances are the outcome will be much healthier.
A thoughtful response, rather than a defensive reaction, will often produce a calmer, more productive conversation—leading to a healthier relationship.
Embrace a growth mindset, which is the belief that “you can improve with effort.” Those who adopt a growth mindset will embrace challenges, treating them as opportunities to learn something new.
So how can we apply this approach in our own lives?
Success in life is all about how we deal with failure. In the case of responding to a fight with a friend or partner, embrace the notion that: “failure is information.” We label it failure, but what we should really think is: “This didn’t work, I’m not happy with how I reacted; therefore, I am going to problem solve and try a different approach.”
It’s also important to note that anyone can work to develop a different mindset, and by fine-tuning our attitude, we can become more growth-oriented over time.
I often talk about the importance of reacting mindfully and being flexible. Making the shift in perspective all comes down to responding to the little things that test your patience or your pride. By slowing down, acting mindfully, and seeing obstacles as learning opportunities, we can actively learn to embrace growth.
And at the end of the day, we could all use a serious attitude check.
Thanks for reading!