Growth Mindset: Achieve More As a Competitive Gamer

by | Mind & Body



It’s not possible to improve without facing a challenge. We need stimulus, or stress, in our everyday lives in order to grow, learn, and become a better version of ourselves.

Think of weight training. You don’t just get strong by wanting it in your head, you have to challenge your body repeatedly, day after day, week after week, in order to get the results you are looking for.

The same goes for gaming. You don’t get better by just wanting to be, to actually progress you need to challenge yourself as well. Below are some key ways to think about your gaming in order to achieve this.

Mindset Shift 1:

Every challenge Is An opportunity

“There’s a smurf on their team!!!”
A Normal Gamer: “It’s not fair! He’s too good. GG :(“
An Optimized Gamer (Growth Mindset): “Oh how lucky I am to get to test my skill against someone clearly better than me.”

The number one way to grow as a gamer is to view challenges as a way forward, not setbacks. Imagine you’ve been playing your favorite game, but only casually. You play game after game of normals, getting to the point where you can easily dominate your opponents. While this feels good, is it helping you improve? Why are you not entering ranked games? Are you afraid of losing?

This is where you need to change your mindset. Enter the ranked match. You may lose horribly the first time, The first ten times! But you can learn something from every loss. What’s important at the beginning is not whether you win or lose, but what you learn about how to play better, match by match.

Losing sucks, and when deep adversity strikes, the next rule becomes important.

Every-time you think something is fair, rise to the challenge. You may not win, but you will grow because of it.

Mindset Shift 2:

Embrace mistakes

In most things, in life out of gaming and in it, we learn the most from our mistakes. There is no such thing as perfect in gaming. No one will win every match. While growing and getting better, you will inevitably make mistakes. 

The best players actively seek to fix their weaknesses by consciously observing their errors. After spotting a mistake in their game, they use it as the way forward to make that weakness a strength.

For example: If you don’t like using the sniper rifle in Fortnite, and avoid picking it up, you have kept a weakness in your game” Instead of avoiding it, pick it up and play a whole game with it! You may lose a couple of games in a row, but you might also find yourself slowly getting better with it. Over time you will become more comfortable, and maybe eventually it will be your favorite weapon!

As you continually make mistakes, you will become better at seeing a way to make your weaknesses a strength. But what happens if you can’t correctly identify a mistake? The last rule addresses this issue.

Give yourself space to fail. You cannot grow when you fear loss.

Mindset Shift 3:

Get good at self-reflection

Changing the way you interpret mistakes is a great step to improving, however, if you misdiagnosing the problem in the first place, you can end up chasing your tail.

Self-reflection (or lack of it) can either lead you to efficient improvement in your game, or a cycle of making the same mistakes over and over without ever truly identifying the issue. It is important to be able to tell the difference between the two.

An important aspect of truly finding a way forward out of weakness is in realizing you should only focus on what you can control. Don’t become fixated on the outward factors-a patch update, another player on your team, or anything else that you can’t directly affect.

Instead, think about only what you can do, your accuracy, communication, anything else that you can directly control. These are the things to reflect on that will help you progress, not how badly your teammate flamed you for a bad death or a missed shot.

Only focus on the things you can control.

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I'm Cameron Chittick

I founded Esport Labs and created the Optimized Gamer Blog to inspire and enable competitive gamers like you to dominate in-game and in life. Welcome to the #OptimizedGamer movement where we focus on the human side of gaming.

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