In giving birth to our babies, we may find that we give birth to new possibilities within ourselves.
-Myla and Jon Kabat-Zinn
It can be helpful to do some mindset work to increase your pregnancy mental wellness. Psychologist Carol Dweck coined the terms: Fixed and growth mindset. So, what are these?
Fixed mindset traits may include:
- Black and white thinking patterns
- Negative thoughts
- Innate traits you’re born with (you either have them or you don’t)
- Ignoring criticism and feedback from others
- Being externally motivated
- Feeling like a failure when life doesn’t go your way
- Feeling limited
- Avoiding challenges
- Being performance-based
Growth mindset traits may include:
- Flexible thinking patterns
- Positive thoughts
- Being effort based
- Accepting of criticism and feedback from others as a way to improve yourself
- Being internally motivated
- Learning from your own failures as well as other people’s failures
- Feeling free to try new things
- Embracing challenges
So, fixed and growth mindsets are opposite thinking patterns, and we all tend to have some features of each mindset.
Here are some questions to reflect on: Do you tend to be more fixed minded or growth-minded? What impact has this mindset had on your pregnancy experience thus far? What are some ways you can add more growth mindset characteristics to your everyday life?
Finally, here are some self-care ideas when you need time for reflection:
- Process with a therapist
- Listen to your favorite music
- Take a bath
- Do some yoga stretches
- Go for a walk
- Connect with loved ones
Which one of these would be most helpful to you today?