“You get the best effort from others not by lighting a fire beneath them, but by building a fire within”
Recent studies are showing where motivation is used to promote effort, as opposed to acknowledging someone’s ability or talent, effects learning outcomes. Studies done by Michigan University where students who were praised for their talents compared to students who were praised because they worked hard seemed to have direct impact on learning outcomes. It appears that students who were praised for innate ability would then attempt easier tasks compared to those students who were praised for their work effort would attempt tasks that were more difficult resulting in improved outcomes.
It seems that complementing about someone’s talent supports beliefs that the brain has a fixed potential, whereas favouring positive feedback about effort or hard work supports the idea the brain has growth potential. Giving student’s messages that reinforce hard work improve learning outcomes and increases desire to strive.
In similar studies done by Carol Dweck students who are motivated via effort were more inclined to look at the test results of higher performing students, seemingly to gain more insight. However, students who were told they were clever tended to compare their results with student’s who got lower scores, probably to maintain their self-esteem. The irony is telling someone they are smart reduces learning capacity.
Studies appear to be proving that we can learn from our mistakes, but it depends on the reaction to the mistake. Those people who were paying attention to their mistakes are able to learn from it. In comparison, those who ignore their mistakes are more likely to repeat it. Again, research is showing that belief systems associated with those who hold the concept that the brain is fixed compared to those who see the potentiality of the brain’s capacity to grow have correlations to outcomes produced by mistakes. People who have a fixed mindset tend to see mistakes as failures, whereas individuals with the growth mindset view mistakes as learning opportunities or part of the learning process.
May this day find toy well.
Counselling and Psychotherapy