Your Next Move
If something you have been working on isn’t going well, what is your usual next move? Do you wallow in the disappointment of not reaching your goal, or do you consider how you might approach your task differently? A better option for you may be to use a strategic mindset and navigate difficult situations by exploring other possibilities to tackling the problem.
As a result, people tend to build more effective strategies across several areas of their lives. They often progress towards their goals—whether professionally, educationally or health-related—and address challenging tasks more efficiently. Patricia Chen, assistant professor at NUS Psychology and her collaborators at Stanford University, including Carol Dweck, conducted studies around the United States that included over 860 collegiate students and employed adults.
“Until now, we hadn’t understood why some people use their strategies more than others at the right time. We developed our research on the strategic mindset to explain why this might be,” says Chen.
So, your next question may be, can people learn a strategic mindset?
Absolutely. In Chen’s experiment, a group participated in a training session where they learned about the strategic mindset. After the meeting, they received a challenging, new task to complete as quickly as possible. Those who had participated in the training session were much more effective in accomplishing the difficult task and completed it much faster.
You may be considering developing a strategic mindset yourself, but how does it work? Dweck, a professor in the psychology department at Stanford University says, “There are key points in any challenging pursuit that require people to step back and develop new strategies. A strategic mindset helps them do just that.”
Next time you are in a bind, ask yourself, “Is there another approach I can use to tackle this problem?”