My friend Lindsay asks really good questions, the kind that kick-off long, in-depth conversations that sometimes actually hurt. And yet, I love having them. Recently, Lindsay asked me about a low point in my life and how I’d moved past it.
After we had talked for bit, she asked: How did you learn from this experience? The HOW startled me and forced me to think back on this time, dredge up some memories. And that’s when I realized that thinking back or reflecting was the answer to her question. I had to reflect on the low point, think back to how I got there in the first place, before I could figure out how to avoid a return to it in the future.
Reflection is key to learning. The foundation of a growth mindset is asking the question: How can I learn from this?
Lindsay, who is also a coach, shared that she uses a similar reflection process.
In our line of work, Lindsay and I run into many people who never take the time to reflect, and therefore miss out on learning opportunities. They dismiss a termination as the fault of a “bad” boss. They attribute an unexpected departure of a team member to the organization’s compensation policy. They blame a colleague for lack of clarity in communicating his or her needs. They point to a vendor issue when they miss production goals.
The reality is, there can be no long-term growth without a different mindset.
Finding a trusted friend, mentor or coach who can prompt you to reflect on a mistake or low point is invaluable to learning and developing a growth mindset.
Do you take the time to reflect and learn?
Do you have someone to help guide your reflection?