By: Jayantha Fernando.

Throughout history, human beings have developed the natural ability to be passionate and resilient, move forward to do things we want, get something we want, and be someone we like. Our ability to be focused our desired outcomes, even when things are not going so well is the growth mindset that helps humans to be more determined, courageous, competent, and confident.

“In a world that relentlessly races to the bottom, you lose if you also race to the bottom. The only way to win is to race to the top. . . . The only way to be indispensable is to be different. . . . Expertise gives you enough insight to reinvent what everyone else assumes is the truth. . . . You can train yourself to matter. . . . You are not your résumé. You are your work.” — Seth Godin

Seth Godin is inviting us to be truthful and to be a “witness” or an “observer” to our subjective experiences by looking beyond our resume or work. It’s a fundamental truth that we all need to be more courageous and creative to continuously reinvent ourselves to face the reality of life with continuous issues and challenges. Therefore in a world that is relentlessly racing to the bottom, we need to be lifelong learners that evolve into our best versions with higher wisdom.



As I listen to Dr. Alia Crum’s explanation in the video, I asked myself, “Is there a direct connection between my/your mindset to the future self that I want to be or to the things I want to do or get? As a professional coach, it is evident to me that the majority of the coachees who face real challenges and problems feel and think like everything happens “to me” and in general you hear them narrate like;

I’m not enough
I feel rejected
I’m a failure
Life is unfair, effort is useless
I don’t have the skill
I’m the most unlucky person in the world

This kind of mindset is like stormy weather that hits the sailboat, fiercely throws it up and down, and pulls and pushes it away from the direction of the destination. This is a moment of truth for the captain of the ship to change course and use all its power to propel and move forward. In reality, life cannot be matched to a sailboat, when any of us face real challenges and problems we may need the support of another person. This is surely not to rescue us, but to help us “shift our mindset to what’s possible and positive”.



Shifting our mindset to a growth mindset can be defined as, “A lens of a frame of mind which orients an individual to a particular set of association and expectations”. This helps untangle and simplify the web of the pleasant and unpleasant infinite number of interpretations at any given moment.

It’s worth knowing the below points relating to how a professional coach helps the client to shift their mind from a fixed mindset to a growth mindset;

A professional coach:
1. Holds the client in the coaching space and establishes safety and trust.
2. Invites and encourages the client to narrate the contextual experience of the coachee, with the attention to offer what is unseen /unconscious to the client, heightening the awareness and deepening learning.
3. Invites the client to visualize well-formed outcomes that result in a positive state of mind and also access the traits that are needed.
4. Requests the coachee to articulate the newly emerged learning as a result of 360 perspective-taken by the coachee.
5. Support the client to have a mental structure that holds active awareness to implement the learning.


Fundamentally, the coach helps the coachee to open up doorways to enter into the existing mindset as a learner and invites to create a new world of the coachee’s choice.

“What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him. What he needs is not the discharge of tension at any cost, but the call of a potential meaning waiting to be fulfilled by him.”
~Viktor Frankl

As a result, the coach is enabled and empowered to tap into the true human potential and learn to balance the tightrope of pain and pleasure of moving toward their visions. Fundamentally, the coachee’s mid-shift to a growth mindset offers a fresh meaning and hope for the coachee to be courageous, and confident in achieving goals come what may.
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