We've been talking about different thought patterns we can use to feel happier. And the final one that we're going to talk about is a thought pattern in terms of what you believe. We're going to be talking about how you can change your mind sets to feel happier. And to start this section, I'm going to tell you the story of Roger Bannister, anybody know what Roger Bannister was famous for? Athletes in here? He was a British athlete back in the 1950s. So Roger Bannister had done pretty good at the 1952 Olympics, but he set his sights on something that scientists thought was impossible. He wanted to run a mile in under four minutes. Now at the time, people just didn't think that the human body could actually do this. They thought there was like, physical limitations about people's running style based on your legs and your muscles. And everyone told him it was impossible, that he's like, I'm going to go for it, I'm going to train, I'm going to train. And then in 1954, he had a race in England and he ran it as quickly as he could. It seemed like he ran it really fast, and then the announcer was like, and he ran in 3.5 night, and then no one else heard it because they just heard the three. And they're like, my gosh, he beat the four minute mile, right? And people were like, that was impossible, like, no human body could do this, right? But he believed he couldn't. What's interesting is you might think, if it was really impossible for a body to run a four minute mile, that record would stand for a really long time. Turns out Roger Bannister's record stood for only a couple of months, within months, somebody else had run under four minute mile and then somebody ran it faster and faster. As soon as people started to believe it was possible, all of a sudden it was possible. And this is something that psychologists have known for a long time, it turns out our beliefs about what we're capable of affect what we're really capable of. Whether you think you can run a four minute mile, what you believe about stress, if you believe stress is the kind of thing that can mess you up, then it does mess you up. If you believe stress is the kind of thing that can get your adrenaline pumping and it makes you perform better, turns out and makes you perform better. Our beliefs really affect how we react to things. Our mindsets, what we believe, really affect how we react to things. And this is particularly true when it comes to beliefs about whether or not we can change, right? A lot of the things we're talking about today and a lot of things we've been talking about in this course, are about changing your behaviors, changing your thought patterns and your mindset. And that kind of thing requires that you believe you can really change. You believe you can be more socially connected or you believe you can control your ruminative thoughts and so on. But what's your belief about that? You might have a belief that you can't really change, you're kind of set in it and it's going to be hard. This is what researchers call a fixed mindset. You believe your basic abilities, whether that's about your intelligence, your fitness, your kindness, they're just kind of fixed traits and you can't change them, this is what some of us think. Whereas other people have a theory that we can change and that's what researchers call a growth mindset. This is the idea that with some work, you're going to have to put some work in, but you can change whatever it is, your intelligence level, your fitness and so on. And it turns out there's lots and lots of scientific work suggesting that whether you have a fixed mindset or a growth mindset impacts all kinds of things about your happiness and your academic performance. And having a growth mindset, believing that you can change matters a lot. A lot of this lovely work was done by the Stanford psychologist Carol Dweck. And she's kind of characterized the flavor of things that come up if you have a fixed mindset versus a growth mindset. So let's see which one of these you kind of feel like is true of you, right? So if you have a fixed mindset, you're kind of tend to be focused on performance, right, because you're trying to am I good at it or not, right? So you're obsessed with grades, you're obsessed with performance. Whereas if you have a growth mindset, you're more focused on the learning outcomes, you just want to see what your slope is. Are you getting better over time? because that's going to tell you you're growing. Fixed mindset folks really think that performance comes naturally, right? Like, you're either good at it or you're bad at it. Whereas growth mindset folks really recognize that performance is going to take hard work, right? You're not going to learn unless you put work and effort in. And this is interesting, because it means that if you have a fixed mindset, you're really worried about having to put work in. Anytime something gets difficult, like you start finding calculus difficult, you're like, if I have to work on it, it means I'm not smart, you kind of run away from it. Whereas growth mindset is just the opposite. As soon as things get hard, you're like, yes, this is where the slope goes up, this is how I start working, right? So you embrace the kind of hard work. And so, effort is a bad sign if you're in a fixed mindset, but a really good sign if you're in a growth mindset? Finally, fixed mindsets and growth mindsets change how you deal with what goes wrong, right? If you're in a fixed mindset and you make a mistake or you have some deficiency, you don't want to tell anybody, you want to hide it. You want to tied it because that means you're just like, you're doomed, right? You can't change it, whereas in a growth mindset you want to see those deficiencies because that's where it's going to tell you where you can get better over time. And that means that a fixed mindset you're doing bad things. You're hiding when you sort of **** up, whereas in a growth mindset you're kind of not even announcing these, but you really want to capitalize on them, right? And so, you might be noticing your own pattern in here, but the good news is that the research suggests, what does the research really suggests? Are we plastic enough to change? Yes, and that includes our mindset. And the evidence suggests, if you can work towards getting a little bit more of a growth mindset, you'll have a host of positive benefits. Both for your performance but also for your attitude and what you think you're capable of and what you think you can be proud of later on in life. Just to show you one study on this Aaronson and colleagues looked at this in the context of academic performance. If you believe you can change and your GPA can get better doesn't get better over time. They did this with Stanford students, where they had Stanford students do an exercise where they wrote younger pen pals. And this was just kind of exercise, it was more just like getting Stanford students to kind of believe what they were writing. And so, some Stanford students wrote to their pen pals about how intelligence is like a muscle. You know, hey younger students, if you're worried about your GPA, remember intelligence like a muscle, you could just get better over time. Versus a control where they wrote about multiple intelligences or they didn't write anything, right? And the question is what happened to the Stanford students GPAs? The ones who kind of really had to emphasize, hey growth mindset, growth mindset, did their GPAs go up over the course of the semester? And what Aaronson and colleagues find is that if you look at student spring semester GPAs, so this is not in the fall, but a whole semester leader. Just this act of kind of writing information about growth mindset where you kind of convince yourself like, hey intelligence is malleable. That transmits to what you do on your GPAs, you're getting a better GPA over time because you believe you can do better. And again, why? Well, you do need to put hard work into do better, right? So, when you get mistakes, you're going to mess up in the fall semester, but then you put more work in, you don't run away from what you did wrong and you put more work in. And then slowly over time you get better. So again, it's this case where your beliefs are changing what you're capable of. So, growth mindset is really good for your academic performance. How do you get one? And of course we go back to our beloved psychrotips, yeah. But the key to a growth mindset is really again how you talk to yourself. And the evidence suggests, you can use just some slightly better words to do really better in terms of your own beliefs about your possibility of change. And the best word that you can add in, is this word yet? So you just like, I can't do this, can't do this yet, right? And so, here are some statements that I know and here high school students making all the time, when you get to hard AP class or you're studying for the SATs. I can't do this, I don't understand this, I just don't get it, right? These are the statements we have in our head, it's fine, you can leave those statements there, but at the end of them just add yet. No, I can't do this, I can't do this yet, right? It just gives your brain the possibility that in the future you can change it around, it convinces you that growth is possible. And so, the idea is if you have a meme because obviously you think I can't do this, you think, yeah. The whole point of this mindset section though is, it comes down to like if you watch that Old Lego movie where they say, I know it sounds like a cat poster but it's true. >> Believe, I know that sounds like a cat poster, but it's true. This is the thing about mindset, if you just believe in yourself, even though it sounds like a cat poster, psychologically speaking, in terms of how your brain reacts, it's really true.