Jen Grisanti (HuffPost): Story: Momentum + Mindset = Achievement

You can find the full story here and key elements below. 

Story: Momentum + Mindset = Achievement

Momentum-BillardOne of the most important ingredients of a successful story is momentum. When you mix momentum with mindset, you root for the achievement of the goal….

How do you create strong momentum? You start your story with a strong trigger incident that leads your central character into a powerful dilemma. Then, the choice made in the dilemma is what defines the external goal. You add momentum to this formula when you set up the personal dilemma and the stakes. We should always be clear about what the worst that can happen is if the goal is not achieved. It’s when we don’t know what’s at stake or why we care that the story loses momentum.

With regards to mindset, I’ve often taught the idea of ego versus spirit. In the first three quarters of the story, the central character wants to achieve the goal for ego-related reasons. It is in the last quarter of the story, after hitting a number of obstacles that the character’s motivation shifts to spirit. They now want to achieve the goal for the betterment of the greater good.

I am currently reading an incredible book titled Mindset by Carol Dweck that made me take a deeper look into this idea. In her book, Carol discusses the idea of the “fixed mindset” versus the “growth mindset”. Carol writes; “The fixed mindset creates the feeling that you can really know the permanent truth about yourself…”

“…The fixed mindset stands in the way of development and change. The growth mindset is a starting point for change, but people need to decide for themselves where their efforts toward change would be the most valuable.” When you shift the mindset of your character from being a fixed mindset to a growth mindset, you add depth and momentum to your story.

In life, momentum is the fuel that leads us toward our goals. When we understand how to utilize the idea of “what is the worst thing that can happen if we do not achieve our goal?” we ignite our possibility. When we allow our mindset to evolve from being a fixed mindset to a growth mindset, we open ourselves up to more opportunity. This thinking not only helps us to achieve more of our goals, but it also opens us up to find more fulfillment in the process. Momentum and mindset are key ingredients in our success in life and in the stories that we tell.

Jen Grisanti is a Story Consultant, Independent Producer, Writing Instructor for NBC’s Writers on the Verge, Blogger for The Huffington Post and author of three books.

Follow Jen Grisanti on Twitter: www.twitter.com/jengrisanti

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