Dozens of articles have been written along the talent Vs. hard work eternal debate. And while some of them praise the one or the other side, most of them forget to reflect on either side from the perspective of the person’s fixedness. In other words, how can a fixed mindset contribute to the live of a person with a great talent?
Hereinafter we make an example of the mindset of a champion by providing an excerpt of Carol S. Dweck’s book “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success”:
In sports, everybody believes in talent. Even -or especially- the experts. In fact, sports is where the idea of “a natural” comes from – someone who looks like an athlete, moves like an athlete, and is an athlete, all without trying. So great is the belief in natural talent that many scouts and coaches search only for naturals, and teams will vie with each other to pay exorbitant amounts to recruit them.
Billy Beane was a natural. Everyone agreed he was the next Babe Ruth.
But Billy Beane lacked one thing. The mindset of a champion.
As Michael Lewis tells us in Moneyball, by the time Beane was a sophomore in high school, he was the highest scorer on the basketball team, the quarterback of the football team, and the best hitter on the baseball team, batting .500 in one of the toughest leagues in the country. His talent was real enough.
But the minute things went wrong, Beane searched for something to break. “It wasn’t merely that he didn’t like to fail; it was as if he didn’t know how to fail.”
As he moved up in baseball from the minor leagues to the majors, things got worse and worse. Each at-bat became a nightmare, another opportunity for humiliation, and with every botched at-bat he went to pieces. As one scout said, “Billy was of the opinion that he should never make an out.” Sound familiar?
Did Beane try to fix his problems in constructive ways?
No, of course not, because this is a story of the fixed mindset. Natural talent should not need effort. Effort is for the others, the less endowed. Natural talent does not ask for help. It is an admission of weakness. In short, the natural does not analyze his deficiencies and coach or practice them away. The very idea of deficiencies is terrifying.
Being so imbued with the fixed mindset, Beane was trapped. Trapped by his huge talent. Beane the player never recovered from the fixed mindset, but Beane the incredibly successful major-league executive did. How did this happen?
If you would like to read more buy the book and support the author. Before you go to buy the book which we warmly recommend, tell us, after reading this small excerpt, what is your opinion on mindsets of champions, mindsets as such, and the role of talent and hard work in one’s live?
Source: Carol S. Dweck’s book “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success