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Future Self with Pete Cohen

Mar 16, 2020

In part 2 of this new podcast series, I look at the difference between a fixed and a growth mindset.


When people join my coaching community, one of the first questions I ask them is whether they have a fixed or a growth mindset.

What’s the difference?


The fixed mindset, as the name suggest is all about staying in the same place. Sometimes it is conscious: ‘I’ve never been good at Maths so I may as well not bother.’ More often, it is unconscious – driven by the example of everyone around us and wanting to fit in, or led by the primal brain trying to keep us from getting outside our comfort zone.

It shows up in our life in a number of patterns of thinking.

  • “I was born this way”
  • “It didn’t work once – not worth trying again”


The growth mindset operates differently. It is just as much a mix of the conscious and unconscious but it shows up in different language and behaviours:

  • “What can I learn from this setback?”
  • “I love a challenge”
  • “Try, try, try again…”


One of the best ways to describe the difference comes from this Ted Talk from Carol Dweck, Professor of Psychology at Stanford University and one of the leading psychologists in this field.

She describes how children respond to failure and to success and how to reward them in a way ,which doesn’t feed the fixed mindset.

In particular, she emphasis that ‘not passing’ isn’t a fail. It’s just a ‘not yet.’


It all comes down to the choices we make when faced with a challenge.

Challenge is, by its very nature, uncomfortable – otherwise we wouldn’t feel a sense of achievement in overcoming them. I am not suggesting otherwise and if, in the middle of a difficult time of your life, you feel tired, emotional or upset there is nothing wrong with you!

But then what?

As you come through the challenging time (which may be anything from a few minutes to a few years) take the time to look back and reflect on where you are now and what that difficult time has done for you.

And ask yourself – how did I grow?


If you have goals and want to test whether you have everything you need to turn them into reality, check out my new goal-setting assessment at



Let me share with you this powerful tool to help you work out what goals you have in life and how likely you are to achieve them.



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I help everyday people achieve their goals & dreams!  Helping and coaching people is my expertise. And it is VERY satisfying to change people’s lives so they improve and change their health, finances, relationships, confidence and mindset.  

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 About Pete Cohen: Pete Cohen is one of the world’s leading life coaches and keynote speakers. Hundreds of thousands of people from all over the world have been motivated and inspired by Pete’s presentations. He has professionally impacted on the lives of thousands of people worldwide, including business executives, professional athletes and the everyday person.  Pete focuses on the importance of closing the gap in our lives between where we are and where we want to be both personally and professionally. 
It’s then all about coaching you to remove the obstacles that are in your way and helping you install the habits of success.  
He is the author of 19 published books, several of which have been best-sellers across the world, including Shut the Duck Up, Habit Busting, Life DIY and Sort Your Life Out. He has also presented his own show on TV called The Coach and was the resident Life Coach on GMTV for 12 years. His new book Inspirators - Leading The Way In Leadership is available for free here