The other day I took my 3 and 5 year olds to a playground at a local park prior to watching my wife play her slo-pitch game. My 5 year old easily crossed a chain bridge and then my 3 year old attempted to cross and fell a couple seconds after grabbing hold of the chains with her hands.
She was about to give up when she told me, “I can’t do it.”
I replied, “You can’t do it… YET!”
She happily said, “Oh yeah… YET!”
She then proceeded joyfully to attempt to cross the bridge a 2nd/3rd/4th/5th time in quick succession. She fell each time a few seconds after starting. On the 6th attempt she finally figured out the one step at a time strategy we were talking about previously and completed it.
She was so proud of herself, and she asked if I could video her doing it, “so I can show Mommy.”
The video above is the 7th attempt, and she couldn’t be more happy with herself! This is the power of YET in action, and I was in tears when she high-fived me. I only wished I videotaped all her attempts, so she can see what joy and perseverance looked like to her when she was 3.
I can’t help but constantly question myself on how I can inspire myself, family, students, and colleagues to continuously find the joy in saying yet, and enjoying the learning journey along the way. Using the word yet changes a fixed-mindset to a growth mindset and a growth mindset brings joy in the hard work when we face challenges. Thank you to Carol Dweck and her book Mindset to contributing to my awareness about the power of a growth mindset.