Jairon Castellanos BoteoHi! My name is Jairon Castellanos-Boteo. I am the GEAR UP First Year College Advisor at TMCC.

Mindset Matters

Coming into a new school year there are a lot of new things to learn, new obstacles to conquer, and new hills to climb. When we get to these things we need to understand that mindset matters. Once we get to an obstacle and we get scared of the challenge or listen to all those small voices that say you can’t do it, you aren’t strong enough, you aren’t progressing, you can’t…..Etc. You will start to believe that you can’t and that you are not able to and that you are not good enough. You need to have a Growth Mindset, not a fixed mindset.  A growth mindset views one’s abilities as capable of expansion; a fixed mindset views our capacities as limited. Mindsets transform the notions of effort and failure. If we believe we can grow, efforts promise rewards and failures can become sources of development and growth. Without that growth mindset, effort and failure simply drain us. If you solely focus on the obstacles then all you will see are obstacles. If you focus on the path and on learning from failures all you will see is success. You may not succeed in everything the first time you try, and that is okay. I wanted to leave you with this example: Michael Jordan world famous Basketball player was cut from his High Basketball team. YES! 6X NBA Champion and Olympic gold medalist Michael Jordan was cut from his High school team. When asked about it MJ later said “I have failed over and over again in life and that is why I succeed.” When having a growth mindset you can’t let your failure define you, you have to let your failures teach you. Put in the work, learn from your failures and I promise you that you will be successful.

Here are two tips to help you through tough moments and get out of a fixed mindset.

  1. If you are worried about a situation. Write down everything you are worried about and cross out everything that is out of your control and deal with the things you can. This will help you overcome the overthinking and the feeling of helplessness. Don’t worry about the things that are out of your control but work on the things that are in your control.
  2. When things go wrong it’s okay to be negative but not for more than 5 minutes. You have 5 minutes to cry, complain, yell, scream, vent, or do whatever you need to do. Once those 5 Minutes are up take a deep breath and say these three powerful words “Can’t Change It”.  This is an acknowledgment that you can’t change what already happened so there is no value in wishing it was different. Learn from it and keep going.