#Mindset Ch. 6

Mindset Chapter 6: Relationships: Mindsets in Love (or Not)

This chapter applied the growth mindset to relationships. From falling in love, to friendships and even to bullies and victims, Dweck touched on applying the growth mindset in these various relationships through offering comparisons of what the growth vs. fixe mindset would look like in each.

One of the many things I love about reading is that we bring our own schema with us; and through our schema, we interpret the reading. Not only interpret it, but we focus on certain themes, threads, concepts and ideas that pertain to our lives.

I have been reading this book and directly applying it to my personal life, which is fine. And, I know that some of us have been really focusing on how this book will help us in our professional lives, which is also fine. Even still, there are some of us who are able to apply this book equally to our personal and professional lives. To ensure that the reflection is meaningful both individually and collectively, I decided to keep the reflection open.

Some links that I used while reading this chapter:





Some possible ways to respond:

  • How has reading this books/this chapter changed your thinking about relationships?

  • What are some of the threads or themes you found in the various relationships?

  • How has your mindset in relationships shifted through the years? Why?

  • Which relationships are easiest/most difficult for you to utilize the growth mindset? Why?

Responding to a quote: Below are some thoughts that stood out to me. You can either respond to my quotes, or choose your own to respond to, explaining why it stood out to you.

  • What was that about the course of true love never running smooth? Well, the course to true love isn’t so smooth either. That path is often strewn with disappointments and heartbreaks. Some people either let these experiences scar them and prevent them from forming satisfying relationships in the future. Others are able to heal and move on.

  • If you have to work at it, it wasn’t meant to be.

  • It doesn’t mean there is no “they live happily ever after,” but it’s more like, “they worked happily ever after”.

  • The belief that partners have the potential for change should not be confused with the belief that the partner will change.

  • Which do you believe?
    The whole point of marriage is to encourage your partner’s development and have them encourage yours OR

Each person comes to the relationship fully formed and you don’t expect to influence who the partner is.

  • …you know who your friends are in times of need VS you know who your fiends are because they celebrate your successes with you

  • Shyness harmed the social interactions of people with a fixed mindset but did not harm the social relations of people with growth mindsets.

  • What can be done about bullying?
    Change the school mindset by creating one of collaboration ad self-improvement.

  • By accepting bullies, we tell them that we don’t think they are capable of more and we miss the chance to help them become more.


Sara’s Response:

I chose the following question and quote to address in my response:

  • How has your mindset in relationships shifted through the years? Why?

  • The belief that partners have the potential for change should not be confused with the belief that the partner will change.


Although I could get ridiculously personal and write about current raw and edgy topics, that would require a nice glass of pinot noir (maybe a bottle 🙂  ) and some face-to-face conversations…So,  I will respond to the above question and quote in the context of a meaningful, but not nearly as personal, relationship: my mom.

My mom and I have always had a rather tumultuous relationship. My biggest issue with my mom is that she never took care of herself: emotionally or physically. She never thought her needs were important enough and because of that, she lost herself, lost her health and lost her zest for life.

My parents had a terrible marriage. My mom tolerated way too much and I was mad at her for that. Why didn’t she stick up for herself? Why did she allow herself to be treated that way? She was stuck and didn’t try to get out. Why didn’t she go back to work? Why didn’t she try to be independent? Why didn’t she try to have friends?

All throughout my childhood, she was a chain smoker, drinker, hardly ate and never exercised. Needless to say, she has suffered severe health issues. And, because it was all self-induced, I struggled with frustration and disappointment. Why didn’t my mom want to live a quality life? Why didn’t she want to ensure that she would live as long as possible in the healthiest way?

At the same time, she gave everything in her to her children. Everything. She is the most generous person I know and gives until she has nothing, much like ‘The Giving Tree’. She was at every game, every event and gently rubbed my face at night when I couldn’t fall asleep. She made every holiday special, made each of her 5 children feel love.

And so, I went through a vicious cycle of hate, guilt and love…

But now, I have experience on my side. I am no longer a confused and angry teenager; I am a mom too and I see now more clearly the things I once did not understand. And I understand demons and habits. So, now, I help her; I love her through action and she feels it. All of the fruitless years of me trying to change her, are in the past. Our relationship is the best it has ever been. I’ve changed my thinking and I have gained a loving relationship with my mom.


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