growth mindset

You Need a Growth Mindset

Once upon a time during my service year*, there was this church I attended often. It was only a stone’s throw from my residence at the time.

To be honest, I’m not sure I went to church (a congregation with a pastor) more than 15 times during my service year. This was mainly because of my involvement in the executive council of the Nigeria Christian Corpers’ Fellowship (NCCF), a body of Christians in the NYSC scheme. I was always going to NYSC camps** to welcome new corps members. Whenever I returned to my service state, I had to join the fellowship for weekly general and executive meetings – including Sundays.

Back to that church.

Whenever they had special services, they’d always invite a particular music minister. This minister had a group, and he always did praise medleys whenever he was called upon. However, I really never got blessed by most of his ministrations. Not because he is a bad minister or lacks the Spirit of God. I simply kept myself from being edified.


First, I felt his ministrations were too plain because he sang ‘plain songs’ and never made any significant effort to get the congregation ‘in the spirit.’ Secondly, I noticed he would always sit down whenever another music minister was ministering. Why would he do that? Shouldn’t everybody be blessed by everybody? Didn’t Apostle Paul even admonish so?

Do you know what my conclusion was?

He was proud. Very proud.

And so whenever I visited that church, and he had to minister, I didn’t even bother about edification. I just enjoyed the melody and waited for the next minister.

Sadly, I now wish I knew better!!

About two years later, I ended up in the same organization as this minister, and we had to work from the same office!

The first time I met him at work, I was like, “Hi, Mr. Bernard***, I know you. You always ministered in so and so church”. Expecting a warm response, I was grossly disappointed when he dismissed me with a shrug.

What! So his pride has even left the pulpit and jumped into his interpersonal relationships? What rubbish!

I decided to give him space, and trust me, I knew my perception of him would never change in a long time, even when, before this time, I had never had any interactions with him.

I also – unconsciously – never paid attention to whatever he had to say and only communicated with him when work demanded.

Please note that my actions weren’t malicious. I was just staying away from a man I thought was doing things the wrong way because I had my ‘carved in stone’ ways of doing things right.

But then, I got the shocker of my life a few months back when I decided to deliberately take my self-made tag off this man and pay attention to him.

He happens to be a very kind and introverted gentleman with a very sound mind and a reputable intellect. He also has a very admirable and objective way of perceiving things and, as such, always made strategic contributions at work. Best of all, he’s got no iota of pride!

Then, I realized that his sitting during ministrations other than his had nothing to do with anybody! And his response during our first meeting was simply him being himself. Nothing more!

Not too long after this realization, he became someone I always looked forward to listening to at work. He never failed to say things as they are, even when he had to state his own faults. And honestly, I learned a great deal from him within a short while.


This is the end of my story, but in my next post, I’ll show you a few reasons why you need a growth mindset to make the most of your relationships.

In the meantime, tell me what things or relationships a fixed mindset has cost you at any point. For me, God was gracious enough, and I didn’t waste the opportunity I had to learn from this man.

* A mandatory 12-months period during which Nigerian graduates dedicate themselves to serving the country in different capacities. The scheme is referred to as the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

**Camps where prospective NYSC members were orientated before deployment to their respective service states.

***His actual name isn’t disclosed.

Spread the love by sharing this Post

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *