This is a four years old article. I am rewriting it to include fixed mindset, the distinction from Carol Dweck’s book, Mindset.
When the mind takes over your perception you see what your mind wants to see.
We have all experienced how the mind tricks us into believing that something other than what’s happening is happening.
When you are dizzy, sea-sick or drunk: the room seems to be spinning. When someone tells you skinny is good, you start liking skinny. When someone tells you you are ugly, you start seeing ugly.
Here are some examples:
1. You are not allowed to see what your mind doesn’t allow you to see…
…this is why Japanese soldiers could not see, till the end, that they were beaten.
More than that: Japanese soldiers enlisted into the Japanese navy, but never considered that they should learn to swim: the option that their vessel would sink never occurred to them: after all their emperor was invincible. They would not even make any moves to get a life preserver when they were under attack: their mind told them that nothing can, nothing could happen to them… and they died by drowning… victims of the mind hiding reality from them.
You are that Japanese soldier, you just don’t know it.
2. In the TV series “Life” the eye witness to a murder believes the accused to be the murderer in spite of her the fact that she actually saw the real murderer, another man. The “popular” opinion, the public opinion distorted her perception and replaced it with what everybody believed to be true. (The series “Life” is about this man released after many years of being incarcerated for a murder he didn’t commit)
Another way your mind controls your perception is by not allowing to see beyond a small cone of vision.
No one is much better than you, maybe better, but only slightly.
I had a conversation with a mastermind partner of mine about intelligence. Intelligence measures what is present in the moment of testing… Intelligence is not fixed, it can be grown, and it can go away if it is not used.
From time to time a person is persistent enough to be admitted to my coaching program, in spite of their evident lack of skills, intelligence, diligence.
I wanted to test this theory with a friend, so I described a conversation that was clearly an illustration to this student’s lack of ability.
I asked my friend what he thought this person’s IQ would be… he said: 109… that is above average, the average is 100… Interesting I thought. So, if this guy’s IQ is 109, what would be yours? 114, said my friend. And how about another student my friend knows… Maybe 110… my friend said.
- IQ of student with problems: 70. (As a testament to the fact that IQ is not fixed, this same student now has an IQ of 110, three years later! This is very important. Because in the same timeframe my friend’s IQ dropped to 70. Why? Because one grew the other didn’t… actually shrunk.)
- IQ of my friend: 90 (passing grades in high school, no more learning, essentially a driver)
- IQ of student this friend knows: 110, professional degree, three languages spoken 1
- OK, then, what do you think MY IQ is? He said: 120? It is 140, says the muscle test. (My IQ has gone up too… why? because I used it.)
When I graduated with my first master’s degree in 1971 people envied me. I could feel their envy, I could feel their thoughts: why not me? Envy is wanting what someone else has, without having to earn it.
From the limited perspective of the human mind they could not see that
- I needed a minimum grade from high school of 4.0 (the maximum possible grade) to be accepted to architecture school in Budapest, Hungary in 1966.
- there were 20 times more applicants than availability
- in addition to have a 4.0 grade in every subject, I needed to be good in freehand drawing, in spacial vision, in math, and I had to have superior memory, eye-hand coordination, athletic abilities, and good health.
- I had to be willing to spend the next five years spending 48 hours in school, not miss more than two classes per semester, or you are expelled, and do 90 hours of homework, graded, per week.Out of the 96 students of my class, two died, one went bonkers, and 92 developed at least one chronic health condition needing constant medical attention. Mine was a bleeding ulcer… and as it turned out later, a massive brain damage.
Yeah, people can’t see that to get results, you need to have had to build the skills, and the physical stamina, the willingness to work hard.
From the limited perspective of the human mind it is all invisible.
You can only see the result. Tai calls it “media bias”.
My theory is that you can’t see another’s skill, intelligence, knowledge beyond a tiny little bit above yours, and maybe somewhat below yours.
You are not allowed to see it. You are not able to see it.
Why? I only have some hunches about that. But the main reason may be, that in the fixed mindset…
if you saw your real place on the scale of intelligence, knowledge, skill, integrity and such, you would have to re-evaluate your self-image,
Your self-image which is fixed, carefully built, and only real results will ever change it.
Margoczi calls it “relative devaluation of your ‘I'”
And people are, by nature, lazy. Changing oneself is a process fraught with danger of failing, or finding out the inconvenient truth. So it is very convenient to have a fixed mindset and delusions… even if it doesn’t take you where you want to be. Even if it gives you a fake, inauthentic life. Laziness and cowardice trumps all.
The problem is that your soul knows the truth.
And your soul will make you go to places where you will be forced to see that you are not who you think you are… It could be a really unpleasant experience, unless you are so protected by the mind that you can’t see, can’t perceive anything outside of what you know… with the fixed mind.
Life wants more life, and more life means knowing more, being more, and as long as you are unwilling or unable to live in harmony with Life, it will make you feel it… it’s not pleasant.
Is there anything I can offer you to make you willing? No, sorry to disappoint.
|growth mindset||in growth mindset you know that nothing is fixed, and you can learn, you can grow skills, intelligence with deliberate practice|
|fixed mindset||in fixed mindset you live as if your abilities were fixed and all you can do is use what you have. the idea of growing, the idea of learning, the idea of effort all act as a devaluation of your “I” and therefore you’ll refuse to do any of it|
|carol dweck||Psychologist famous for her Mindset book, revealing fixed mindset and growth mindset|
- intelligence will be vastly reduced when your emotions run high, fear, anxiety, anger, etc. these measurements were made when all involved was OK with themselves. This student’s IQ also dropped… Why? She dropped out… and started to shrink again.