Empowering Students

Empowering students to become the best version of themselves, teachers, coaches, and parents are able to influence the greater good of all peoples everywhere. By empowering students you automatically alter that student’s mindset. When you create that growth mindset, you have put that student on the path to self-mastery. When you help them create that mindset of a champion, you have given them the greatest gift you can. You have empowered them. This gift of empowering students to take control of their learning, personal development, and maturation process is what allows them to make positive contributions to humanity.

The gift of empowering students to take control of their learning, personal growth, and maturation process is what allows them to make positive contributions to humanity.

Empowering Students:
Influencing Beliefs through Language

One of the best ways we have of empowering students is helping them to develop positive beliefs about their ability to learn. Again, the core belief of a growth mindset is the belief that our intelligence is not fixed but can change over time. It can improve.

At Growth Mindset Training Academy, the core belief is we are at cause in our world. In other words, we control how we respond to external events. For anyone who has influence over students – teachers, parents, coaches, mentors – it is invaluable to understand how our language can influence their beliefs and therefore their mindset. It isn’t just what we say but how we say it.

For example, look at these two statements: 

  • This unit on differentials for many students is very difficult with many challenges, but I am telling you that if you believe in yourself and work through the challenges and persevere, you will do well on the final test.
  • I can’t tell you that you will find this unit on differentials easy or that you will become excited and curious enough to embrace all the questions that you don’t find easy, but I can tell you that those of you who decide to become curious or decide to embrace this learning will do very well on the final test.

Notice that the message is essentially the same – the unit is difficult and challenging – but how that message is structured is different and that structure communicates something different. The first embeds the suggestion of difficulty while the second embeds the suggestion of easy. I am telling you, it is better to suggest easy than suggest difficulty. It will do more to shape their beliefs in a beneficial manner.

When you learn how the structure of your language, verbal and nonverbal, can shape beliefs, you will become much more influential at empowering students.

Empowering Students through Emotional Management

Stress impedes performance. When someone is under stress they do not perform as well. While it may be conducive to create stress in order for some to practically learn how to perform even while under stress, it would be essential for those students to be given the skills to control their response to the stress. This is what the military does, especially with their special forces. Those soldiers need to learn to control their response to stress so they can still perform optimally. It is no different in empowering students to perform optimally. They too need to learn to control their response to stress.

Too often we are trying to remove stressors from students’ lives without giving them tools to better handle the response to that stress. It is conceivable that removing stressors could be a positive and reasonable response, but it probably should not be blanket policy. If our outcome is empowering students, then they must learn skills to healthily manage their stress. Learning techniques such as breath control, mindfulness or mediation or prayer, anchoring, and visualization to name just a few will give them incredibly valuable skills.

Perhaps more importantly than just teaching how to use those techniques is giving them an opportunity to develop the skill and most importantly the creation of the habit of using them on a daily basis. Empowering students begins by helping them establish essential rituals in their life. Those rituals, those habits, are a core part of training a growth mindset or the mindset of a champion. If you believe that simply teaching them about the techniques and how those techniques work will do anything about empowering students, you are sadly mistaken. Trying to get these habits or rituals established is a very challenging job for any teacher or parent.

The student must take ultimate responsibility for that success or failure, but parents and teachers need to understand there are five shifts in their thinking they need to make. These shifts are essential. Empowering students is best done with a home and school cooperative relationship.

Teachers who learn how to establish a culture and environment where positive anchors, breathing, and mindfulness practices are routine will greatly aid students in being able to get into a good learning state. That coupled with well thought out language usage can be a significant influence on the beliefs that constitute a growth mindset or the mindset of a champion.

Establishing a culture and classroom environment where trust is built and positive anchors, breath training, and mindfulness practices are routine greatly aid students in being able to manage their emotions and get into a proper learning state.

The Impact of Empowering Students

By empowering students, we are empowering our society by training the next generation of leaders. Imagine a society where the majority of people learn to believe that their intelligence can be improved, embracing challenges is a positive virtue, learning from criticism causes you to become a better person, love is the foundational virtue of all success, and faith and faithfulness are the piers that will support all the rest of the mindsets that make up the mindset of a champion. When you look at those character traits, you can see, can’t you, that they are traits of sought after leaders. Empowering students means helping them move toward acquiring those character traits as well as the beliefs and emotional management skills that cause constant and never-ending personal growth.

Please consider joining our private Facebook group: Mastering Your Growth Mindset

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