Also in Chapter 6:

  • Relationships Are Different
  • Mindsets Falling In Love
  • The Partner As Enemy
  • Competition: Who’s The Greatest?
  • Developing in Relationships
  • Friendships
  • Shyness
  • Bullies And Victims

Was Your Relationship Meant to Beā€”Then Watch Out! How Relationships Get Derailed. How to Revive a Relationship Through Mindset. Rejection: Who Recovers and Who Doesn’t. Bullying and What to Do About It.

As a society, we don’t understand relationship skills. Yet everything is at stake in people’s relationships. Maybe that’s why Daniel Goleman’s Emotional Intelligence struck such a responsive chord. It said: there are social-emotional skills and I can tell you what they are.

Mindset adds another dimension. They help us understand even more about why people often don’t learn the skills they need or use the skills they have. Why people throw themselves so hopefully into new relationships, only to undermine themselves. Why love often turns into a battlefield where the carnage is staggering. And, most important, they help us understand why some people are able to build lasting and satisfying relationships

So far, having a fixed mindset has meant believing your personal traits are fixed. But in relationships, two more things enter the picture–your partner and the relationship itself... The growth mindset says all of these things can be developed. All–you, your partner, and the relationship – are capable of growth and change.

In the fixed mindset, the ideal is instant, perfect, and perpetual compatibility. Like it was meant to be. Like riding off into the sunset. Like “they lived happily ever after.” Many people want to feel their relationship is special and not just some chance occurrence. This seems okay. So what’s the problem with the fixed mindset? There are two. In the fixed mindset:

#1: If You Have to Work At It, It Wasn’t Meant to Be

One problem is that people with the fixed mindset expect everything good to happen automatically. It’s not that the partners will work to help each other solve their problems or gain skills. It’s that this will magically occur through their love, sort of the way it happened to Sleeping Beauty, whose coma was cured by her Prince’s kiss, or to Cinderella, whose miserable life was suddenly transformed by her Prince.

#2: Problems Indicate Character Flaws

The second big difficulty with the fixed mindset is the belief that problems are a sign of deep-seated flaws. But just as there are no great achievements without setbacks, there are no great relationships without conflicts and problems along the way.

Chapter 6 shows how a growth mindset can get people out of this bind.