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How to use your growth mindset journal: 60 prompts

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What is a growth mindset journal?

I love journaling and it has been a huge help in my life.

Journaling helps me and many others process and clarify thoughts, calm an anxious mind and give priority order to tasks that need to be done.

Additionally it has helped me lose weight and learn to love myself and what I wear by journaling.

Above all it is a place, for me, of freedom. Freedom to explore my own thoughts, to give myself space and time to process my lived experience, how I experience life.

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What is growth mindset?

Growth mindset is a concept made popular in one of my favourite books, by Carole Dweck, the excellent Mindset.
Mindsets are basically the ideas we have about ourselves.

The mindset that Carol Dweck and her students have studied most is intelligence. Fixed mindset people believe that intelligence is a fixed trait: you have a certain amount of it and can’t do anything to change it. Growth mindset people believe that intelligence can be developed and that what you are given at birth is just the start of something much greater.

If we have a fixed mindset we will be believe that our character/ability/talents are innate, fixed at birth, whereas a growth mindset believes that our character/ability/talents are a starting point to learning new things and developing one’s character.

This is a very basic and not comprehensive explanation of the two mindsets and I would really recommend you read the book to understand both fully and to work out which mindset you are. When I read the book I thought I would definitely identify as growth mindset in all areas of my life: relationships/work/family.

In fact there were areas where I am definitely fixed mindset and I have had to learn to overcome those thoughts.

What is a growth mindset journal?

A growth mindset journal is a way of journaling to help you in your growth mindset journey. It is a way of taking situations and actively deciding how you are going to deal with them in a proactive, rather than reactive, way.

A growth mindset journal can help you if you feel:
stuck
depressed
anxious
indecisive

A growth mindset journal can also help you if you:
need help with a new direction
want to start a new adventure or project
recognise that you want to develop more, personally, but don’t know how to start

Journals are places of self discovery, places where you can write thoughts, learn new information about yourself and develop methods and tactics for becoming more you.

This act of reflection, about our successes, failures, ways of navigating life, plays a significant part in improving our emotional intelligence, self-esteem and resilience.

A growth mindset journal is a journal that tracks and analyses your growth mindset journey. Using your journal to create a growth mindset journal means intentionally setting out to track and journal your thoughts and attitudes towards life around you.

And what you are trying to observe and track are the reactions that you have to life around you and how you respond to challenges and overcome failure.

What you are trying to develop is resilience, perseverance, discipline and a great attitude to the challenges in your life. If you are meeting challenges with resignation, despair, despondency and resistance in the form of avoidance or laying blame, then your mindset is fixed.

The growth mindset journal should be an aid to helping you think new thought patterns and approach the challenges that life throws your way in a different way, a growth mindset way.

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How do you start a mindset journal?

Developing a growth mindset is one of those buzz phrases that is great to throw around. But if you would seriously like to develop your mindset then read on for how to start you growth mindset journal.

Developing a growth mindset needs a problem or challenge

If you want to grow and strengthen your mindset, you need a problem or challenge. You can read all the books (although you probably only need the original Mindset book) and develop all the mental strategies, but until you face a challenge you have nothing to work on, no real way of developing.

The reality is you need to get yourself some challenges! Fortunately for us humans we have the real world to contend with and every day, on a constant basis, challenges are being thrown at us, uninvited and sometimes unwanted.

Now you can take all those challenges and problems and instead of hiding under the duvet, pouring another glass of wine or eating that chocolate in an attempt to avoid the problem, you can put them to good use in your growth mindset journal, utilise them as as fieldwork and achieve two purposes: solving the problem and growing your growth mindset.

Creating your growth mindset journal

Little did you imagine that needing a new boiler, working out where the water leak is coming from, earning more money, learning how to live with your family or working out how to juggle full time work with a busy home life could be such a fruitful ground for your growth mindset journal. But it is going to be exactly that. This blog post will take you through the steps of your first 30 days journaling for growth mindset.

Creating the time parameters

Problems will never go away, but for the purposes of the journal, give yourself a 30-day framework to go to work on your challenge and your growth mindset. After the initial 30 days you can review your progress and set yourself another 30-day framework. Rather than tracking this journal by the days, organise your growth mindset journal into ‘problems’ or ‘challenges’.

How to organise your growth mindset journal

Each of the 30 day pages should contain:

The problem

Your thoughts around the problem

Initial steps to resolve the problem

Each step should be written out with space below it to journal.

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Working through your growth mindset journal

As you take each step, journal how you feel, what comes up for you in terms of resistance, doubt, fear, anxiety. Give your journal everything you’ve got in terms of honest reflection of how you feel.

Growth mindset people don’t mind this at all, they think that when they can see the potential for failure, they actually see the moment where they can take action and achieve a better outcome. Fixed mindset see the problem and want to run a mile, disassociate themselves from it. They feel that they have failed in some way and make that failure a personal trait.

Growth mindset people treat failure and success the same, but they often regard failure as more instructive because it is a better indication of how to improve and ultimately achieve your goal, than is success.

For the 30 days of the growth mindset journal, embrace all that really sucks and go to work on the problem/challenge that faces you.

This is how you grow. It’s not through creating a beautiful journal and thinking good thoughts, although that is part of the whole picture. It’s by addressing all the rubbish feelings, and challenges that life offers us on a plate each and every day.

And this is how failure leads to success.

Growth mindset journal prompts and ideas

Growth mindset prompts

It can be helpful to start with journaling prompts to get your head into the right space for facing your challenging situations. Here is a list of 50 growth mindset journaling prompts. Pick one, or as many as you like, and journal around it.

  1. What is one mistake you made recently, and what did you learn from it?
  2. Describe a time when you faced a challenge and overcame it. How did you grow as a result?
  3. What are three things you can do to embrace failure as an opportunity for growth?
  4. List five personal strengths you possess and how they have contributed to your success.
  5. How can you reframe a setback or obstacle as a learning experience?
  6. What is one goal you have been afraid to pursue? What steps can you take to overcome that fear?
  7. Write about a time when you received constructive criticism. How did it help you improve?
  8. What are three limiting beliefs you hold about yourself? How can you challenge and replace them with empowering beliefs?
  9. Reflect on a time when you achieved something you initially thought was impossible. What did that experience teach you?
  10. How can you turn your weaknesses into areas for growth and improvement?
  11. Write about a time when you took a risk and it paid off. How did that experience shape your mindset?
  12. Describe a skill or talent you would like to develop. What steps can you take to cultivate that skill?
  13. How do you typically respond to setbacks? What alternative responses can you adopt to foster a growth mindset?
  14. Reflect on a time when you received praise or recognition for your efforts. How did it motivate you to continue growing?
  15. What are three areas of your life where you can embrace continuous learning and growth?
  16. Write about a time when you felt overwhelmed. How did you manage to overcome that feeling and grow from it?
  17. Describe a time when you sought out feedback or guidance. How did it contribute to your personal development?
  18. What are three strategies you can use to maintain a growth mindset during challenging times?
  19. Reflect on a mistake or failure that turned into an unexpected opportunity. How did that experience change your perspective?
  20. Write about a role model or mentor who embodies a growth mindset. How can you incorporate their mindset into your own life?
  21. What steps can you take to cultivate a sense of curiosity and exploration in your daily life?
  22. Describe a situation where you had to step out of your comfort zone. What did you learn from that experience?
  23. Reflect on a time when you had to adapt to change. How did it contribute to your personal growth?
  24. Write about a time when you had to overcome self-doubt. How did you build confidence and resilience?
  25. What are three strategies you can use to overcome obstacles and maintain focus on your goals?
  26. Describe a situation where you collaborated with others to achieve a common goal. How did it enhance your growth mindset?
  27. Reflect on a time when you tried a new approach or strategy. What lessons did you learn from that experience?
  28. Write about a setback that turned out to be a valuable learning opportunity. How did it contribute to your personal growth?
  29. What are three ways you can incorporate feedback into your growth and development process?
  30. Describe a time when you took on a leadership role. How did it impact your mindset and personal growth?
  31. Reflect on a time when you persevered through a difficult task or project. How did that experience shape your mindset?
  32. Write about a time when you overcame a limiting belief about your abilities. How did it open up new possibilities for growth?
  33. What are three strategies you can use to overcome self-limiting thoughts and cultivate a positive mindset?
  34. Describe a situation where you had to adapt your goals due to unforeseen circumstances. How did it contribute to your growth?
  35. Write about a time when you received feedback that initially felt difficult to accept. How did you use that feedback to grow and improve?
  36. Reflect on a time when you faced a setback or failure. How did you bounce back from it and continue moving forward?
  37. Describe a situation where you had to overcome a fear or insecurity. How did it contribute to your personal growth?
  38. Write about a time when you sought out new challenges or opportunities for growth. How did stepping outside your comfort zone benefit you?
  39. Reflect on a skill or habit you would like to develop. What specific actions can you take to cultivate that skill or habit?
  40. Describe a time when you had to shift your perspective or mindset in order to overcome an obstacle. How did it impact your growth?
  41. Write about a time when you sought support or guidance from others. How did their input help you on your growth journey?
  42. Reflect on a situation where you had to manage your time and resources effectively to achieve a goal. How did it contribute to your growth mindset?
  43. Describe a time when you faced a criticism or setback that tempted you to give up. How did you find the resilience to keep going?
  44. Write about a situation where you had to learn from someone else’s success. How did their achievements inspire and motivate you?
  45. Reflect on a time when you had to confront and overcome a limiting belief or self-doubt. How did it transform your mindset?
  46. Describe a goal or aspiration that you initially thought was out of reach. How did you change your mindset and take steps towards achieving it?
  47. Write about a time when you had to navigate through uncertainty or ambiguity. How did it contribute to your growth and adaptability?
  48. Reflect on a situation where you had to ask for help or delegate tasks. How did it enhance your ability to collaborate and learn from others?
  49. Describe a time when you faced a difficult decision. How did you gather information and approach it with a growth mindset?
  50. Write about a time when you celebrated small victories and progress along your growth journey. How did it reinforce your growth mindset?

Growth mindset phrase ideas

And here are 10 ideas for starts of phrases that could get you started on your growth mindset journal practice:

  1. “One area of my life where I can embrace growth is…”
  2. “A limiting belief I want to challenge is…”
  3. “To foster a growth mindset, I will commit to…”
  4. “I can turn setbacks into opportunities for growth by…”
  5. “An area where I can cultivate curiosity and a thirst for learning is…”
  6. “A skill I want to develop further is…”
  7. “I will overcome self-doubt by…”
  8. “To maintain a growth mindset during challenges, I will…”
  9. “I will seek feedback from others to improve my…”
  10. “In order to expand my comfort zone, I will…”

Feel free to complete these sentences with your own thoughts and intentions to create personalized growth mindset journal prompts that resonate with you.

Where do you go from here?

In conclusion, definitely read the book if you haven’t already done so. Create a growth mindset journal for yourself divided up into 30/31-day sections. Use your own life challenges, which you previously thought were a curse but now regard as a blessing because they provide opportunity for growth!

Use the growth mindset journal prompts and start of sentence phrases if you feel stuck and set yourself a 30 day challenge. See how you feel at the end of the trial period and track your growth. Enjoy and happy journaling!

If you like this blog post on creating a growth mindset journal then you may also like:

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Journal your way to success with goal affirmations

Organising your journal for the life you want

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