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A difficult audio book to get through, but worth persisting. There are some gems that are wonderful to behold, but these are scattered sparsely within the book that is overly repetitive. I think Dr Dweck could have expressed her ideas by using about one quarter of the words she uses here. The tense, somewhat flat, voice of the reader, makes the search for the gems in the book a difficult one.
110 of 115 people found this review helpful
I am generally unimpressed by self-help books and this is no exception. I strongly agree with the basic premise, but I was not impressed at all by this book. There are hours of profiles of happy successful people (largely sports figures) who the author says have a growth mindset and unhappy people with limited success who the author says lack a growth mindset. This “new” psychology seems quite reminiscent of the deep philosophers of the last century like Norman Vincent Peale.
I am dubious that anyone starting without a growth mindset will be changed by this book. I am just as dubious anyone already possessing a grown mindset would appreciate these mind numbing profiles. This book felt like it was selling something. I checked out the free sample of the associated Brainology online program. Again, I totally agree with the premise, but found the sample Brainology lesson really weak. I am dubious of new educational fads with weak evidence that charge thousands of dollars for a school program.
I also found the author’s claim that our society worships talent more than effort and grit weak. Many of the qualities the author attributes to a growth mindset, openness, determination, effort, team-work, overcoming adversity, limiting-ego, are all celebrated in our society. Society holds talent which is wasted or not tempered by team-work and humility in disdain. It seems to me the more critical issue is that our society worships success more than happiness and success more than growth.
The last forty minutes of the book have a few practical suggestions but I did not find these made up for the many hours of profiles of sporting heroes and villains..
I much prefer books like Stumbling on Happiness which presumes a growth mindset and focuses more on strategies to be happy.
114 of 123 people found this review helpful
Its hard to disagree too much with the subject of the book, indeed having a growth mindset is likely a have a lot more positive effect on your life. My issues with the book are:
Firstly the never ending slew of examples of why the fixed mindset is worse and the growth mindset is better. After 2 examples I got it but it goes on to mention another study, then talk about Tiger Woods, then another study, then John McEnroe and after a while you just go 'OK I get it', I found myself fast forwarding so often hoping some new ground would be covered.
Secondly the narrator Marguerite Gavin is not so good, Im surprised its actually a person because honestly I thought it was some sort of, very good, narration app. I found her very grating like listening to a convincing computer program, there was always something off about the way she read it, the nuances in her voice and expression just felt off a lot of the time. It felt like I was being read a story by somebody who didnt want to be reading so they injected false enthusiasm. Still this is one book you dont really want the auther Carol Dweck to read, her intro filled me with a bit of dread at the prospect of another 8 hours of the same voice, a bit like listening to your grandmother prattling on and on and on lol
31 of 31 people found this review helpful
There are some useful insights in this book and definitely you can gain something. But I just feel everything is too simplistic. Fixed mindset = bad; Growth mindset = good. In principle this is ok but people are so much more complex than this. Carol Dweck does allude at one point that people can have different mindsets in differing areas but I think that we can all oscillate between both mindsets depending upon how we feel recent experiences and a multitude of other influences. Although I do believe that aiming for a growth mindset is better.
She also uses examples of the two mindsets from business and sport. People who were very successful and then fell from grace all of course suffered from a fixed mindset according to Dweck. Now some of those people are still wealthier than most will ever achieve! I also wonder if this was being written now whether Tiger Woods would have been the paragon of a growth mindset that Dweck states (the book being written before his fall from grace). I suspect he would now be assigned the bad fixed mindset somehow. John McEnroe who I think you'd have to admit was pretty successful by pretty much any standards is pilloried for his fixed mindset.
As I said there are nuggets of wisdom here. But I found with so many of the examples used that Dweck has just used hindsight to determine if someone had the 'good' growth mindset or bad fixed mindset that I found myself wanting to argue with the recording.
Of course I also suspect that the mere fact that I disagree with Dweck in anything would, in her opinion, label me as suffering from the fixed minsdset! Overall you might learn something here but I doubt it is going to change your life.
30 of 31 people found this review helpful
loved the ideas. seems simple. Felt like I needed to get use to the narrator's. Seemed strange at first but eventually got use to it.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Great book that gets you to think about the way you live your life. Does a great job of providing examples that you can relate to.
2 of 2 people found this review helpful