How to create a growth mindset

Creating a growth mindset with Kaizen

Create a growth mindset! We have heard this phrase before. But it’s easier said than done. To really create a growth mindset we need to experience it first-hand by .. growing.

Physical exercise and lifestyle improvement can help you achieve this growth mindset. Because it is the easiest way to start learning how problems can become opportunities for improvement. And by training yourself physically you also train yourself mentally – to become better each day.

A healthy lifestyle

Creating a growth mindset with lifestyle improvement

A healthy lifestyle isn’t something that is achieved in one night. It is about learning and cultivating the right habits to live your greatest potential life.

By adopting physical exercise and by improving your diet, you strive for growth and the best version of yourself, which inevitably leads to improvement in other aspects of your life. In short, it is a practical way to achieve something because the results are entirely within your control.

This is why it is a great tool to learn how to create a growth mindset. You have to experience and invest the effort to continuously improve. This is the essence of a growth mindset; constantly planning, doing, checking and acting. This cycle of continuous improvement is also known as Kaizen.


Continuous improvement is an active mental process that operates and governs your daily choices.

Creating a growth mindset with continuous improvement

It is also known as Kaizen, literally translated as “The act of making bad points better”. Another popular translation is ‘change for better’. It is an internal process, focused on self-development.

Practicing continuous improvement, or Kaizen, means you are engaged in planning, strategizing, doing, checking and adapting your daily behaviour. As a result you start to develop an eye for details, creating full alignment between what you want and do.

This is especially so with physical exercise and healthy living, since you start to focus on what you train and eat day in and day out – the effort you invest 24/7.

Improving your lifestyle can therefore be an effective trigger to unlock more potential in your future.

Creating a growth mindset with Kaizen and Hansei

In order to reach each following peak, you must first acknowledge that you have not achieved the highest goal yet. This is part of the growth mindset – always striving to improve and face new challenges.

To start this process of fulfilling your full potential, start the day with an act of dedication.

An act of dedication

How you start your morning is what defines the difficulty of the rest of your day. So doing something that requires a lot of willpower in the morning makes the rest of the day easier. Mark Twain calls this the live frog:

“Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day.”

– Mark Twain

With regards to lifestyle improvement, instead of eating a live frog, start the day with drinking e vegetable shake.

Now, most people will not have the time to work out in the morning due to other priorities. But making a vegetable shake shouldn’t take too much time. This act of dedication is focused on sparking the growth mindset while also created momentum for the rest of the day.

There are multiple advantages of adding a vegetable shake to your breakfast:

  • You start the day with something most people do not do – hydration, fibre and food rich in vitamins
  • It determines the mindset for the rest of your day because you start with an extremely high value product
  • It lowers the barrier of any other activity because of the dedication requirement, making it easier to adhere to any other dietary rules, especially when you combine this with other lifestyle approaches such as intermittent fasting and carb backloading (which will be talked about later).

The shake of dedication

A vegetable shake is comprised of different vegetables. Buy some vegetables that you can easily store in the freezer. then, as soon as you get up in the morning, you fill your blender with the vegetables and cold water (if you do not have time add hot water to speed up the process). Below is a initial list of vegetables that you can use. Use group A as the main source of vegetables and experiment with adding sorts from group B.

Group A

  • Celery
  • Carrot
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Green beans
  • String Beans
  • Spinach

Group B

  • Parsnip
  • Mushrooms
  • Artichokes
  • Beetroot
  • Eggplant
  • Zucchini
  • Endive
  • Cucumber
  • Asparagus
  • Ginger
  • Avocado
  • Chia seeds / flax seeds

The primary goal of the shake is ingestion of healthy nutrients. But the secondary reasons are much more powerful over the long run. Each successive vegetable shake compounds in effects over time, because it adds to your level of consistency. Where motivation stops, you will learn that discipline starts to take over. As a result of this habit, you create an invaluable resolve to start each day on the right track.

The main reason this approach works so well is because setting our self up for the day gives us momentum to do everything else. Once you learn to love it, you will experience that it isn’t even that bad in the first place.

Combining vegetable shakes with other dietary programs

Vegetable shakes are easily combined with other dietary protocols, such as Intermittent Fasting and Carb Backloading. Both programs are really interesting to follow because they both teach you how to use delayed gratification – learning to delay a reward for a greater reward later – which is practically the essence of a growth mindset. You sacrifice something now to get something of value later.

Intermittent fasting

Intermittent Fasting is a fasting protocol, where you only within a certain window of time. The most known approach to IF is Lean Gains from Martin Berkham. Martin states that we should at least aim for 16 hours of fasting each day while eating in the remaining 8 hours. It can also be 10 hours or 6, depending on the day and your rhythm. Either way, your goal is to reduce the frequency of meals from 6 to around 3 main meals.

The benefits of this approach are less hunger, more joy in eating and most importantly; people say it is easy to adhere to once you get used to the longer periods of fasting. It is also a great way to become more productive while feeling energetic, instead of feeling tired by the food you consume in the morning. By creating an amazing start of the day with the vegetable shake, the rest of the day also becomes easier to follow in the same steps.

Additionally, the vegetable shake can also help you prolong the semi-fasting window because of the high fibre and water content. You will feel satiated for a longer period of time, which makes it easy to avoid any calories. Once you start doing this you might eat a bit less in the first meal. This can help you create a caloric deficit too.

Carb backloading

Carb Backloading is a method that emphasizes eating fast carbs after working out. This means almost no carbs before a workout, or at least not in the first meal of the day to ensure that there is no elevation of insulin levels in the morning.

By combining a vegetable shake with high protein and high fat foods, you are following a great healthy diet during the day, which makes it easier to reward yourself with something you like later in the day. This way, you can condition yourself to become used to eating less carbs before your workout, while rewarding yourself with carbs after the workout.

Do you have skin in the game?

The main benefit of lifestyle improvement is that there is no way to cheat. You have to put in the work, no exceptions. This is what we call having skin in the game. You are committed, which is a key ingredient for a growth mindset.

“With personal responsibility you create more personal power”

So the real question of a growth mindset is; do you have skin in the game for your goals? Are you focused on pleasure only, or are you truly giving up something in the now to reach another thing of value later? Are you becoming superior to your daily standard?

Growth means becoming superior

“Superior” in anatomy (and Spanish) literally means ‘above’. In this sense, becoming superior to your former is about being able to go to a higher level. The related Spanish word superar is borrowed from Latin superāre, which means to get over, excel or overtake.

The etymology describes that becoming superior to your former self is about overcoming obstacles on the path to self-realization. Improving and excelling in your personal standard, investing effort in goals you deem important.

Put differently, it doesn’t mean chasing goals and ambition in vain, but actually focusing on creating a life with worthwhile undertakings.

Ready for change

Embracing growth and change

You are ready for change when you know you can be comfortable with incoming discomfort. Having goals like physical exercise and living a healthy lifestyle is help you take on that discomfort. Because you create the strategy and build the motivation & courage to take action and create that type of life. So this automatically becomes your attitude for performance in each aspect of your life. Always looking for the 1% improvement – over yourself.

Because the competition in life is only with yourself.

Time to spark dedication.

Use the vegetable shake method to kickstart your day – so that the rest becomes a piece of cake (but save it for after your workout!).

Boris is a Dutch consultant, Lifestyle Coach and Sports fanatic. He enjoys helping others with personal development by creating a change in attitude and behaviour.

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