Day 762: Growth Mindset by Andrew Huberman


Just when I thought I’d heard it all regarding the ins and outs of mindset, along comes a podcast episode by a bloke I just discovered this week. It is Growth Mindset by Andrew Huberman. 

Who Is Andrew Huberman?

Andrew is a neuroscientist from Stanford University who has gained a large following in the last couple of years with his Huberman Lab podcast. While he discusses a wide range of topics (solo and with guests) his core work centres around “science based” tools to improve human performance and mental wellbeing. 

The exact podcast that piqued my interest was How To Enhance Performance and Learning by Applying a Growth Mindset. After listening to the whole 2 hours of this podcast I was very impressed with the breadth of his knowledge and calm delivery. In short, he knows his stuff!

Effort Praise Vs Intelligence Praise

What I found the most intriguing on his Growth Mindset podcast was the breakdown of a study that compared “intelligence praise” with “effort praise.” The former is described as praise that is based on identity, eg: “You are so smart”, “You are so talented.” The latter praises the effort, eg: “You didn’t quit”, “I’m proud of the way you dug in and kept going.” 

When comparing the two types of praise most people (myself included) would assume that “intelligence praise” would be more beneficial to the recipient. However, the opposite turned out to be true. It seems that too much “intelligence praise” can be detrimental, especially when the inevitable happens…adversity, setbacks and obstacles. 

Did I Apply This Mindset Unconsciously?

The more I think about it the more it makes sense to me. For example, when I rebooted this blog I (unconsciously perhaps) focused heavily on the daily effort areas (steps, training, nutrition, etc) that I could control 100%. 

Even when I had a good week, month or 12 week Mission I attributed the results to my efforts rather than any innate skill I possessed. This also had the effect of keeping my feet on the ground and realising that the daily efforts needed to continue if I were to maintain (or improve) my physique.  

This type of mindset was especially helpful during the various injuries and weight loss plateaus I went through during my first four Missions. If I had have been too attached to my “new” identity or any innate “skills” and “abilities” I most likely would have fallen into a “mini-abyss” again. When I was unable to train heavy for eight weeks due to my wrist injury I would have felt everything “slipping away” if my self-esteem was drawn from adjectives and not verbs.

So, all in all, I highly recommend Andrew Huberman’s podcast on Growth Mindset if you’d like to broaden your knowledge on this fascinating topic.

Until next week,

Eat Clean,
Shred Hard,
Think BIG!

Adam Waters  

Weekly Accountability Log
Day 762 of 1000 – Sep 10, 2023

Mission 9: Week 3 of 12 (M9 Day 21)

RTP Module



1) Mindset (0.5 pts per day)


2) Motivation (0.5 per day)


3) Goals (0.5 pts per day)


4) Scales (0.5 pts per day)


5) Physique
  – Weekly Picture (21 pts)
  – 6 Workouts? (7 pts)


6) Nutrition
  – Food Plan (2 pts per day)
  – Drink Plan (1 pt per day)


7) Real Time Wildcard
  – 10k ave steps (1 pt p/d).


Cumulative Acc. Score



Cume. Acc. Percent Score



Mission 9: Day 21 Accountability
Scales/Step Count (Proof of Work)

Mission 9: Day 21 of 84 – Sep 10, 2023

Day 21 Weight/Bodyfat

Day 21 Steps/Training

RTP Time Machine: On This Day Two Years Ago

Day 32: Down For The Count?

G’day, As I mentioned yesterday I have had an Achilles problem the last couple of days, most likely tendonitis brought on by a “rapid increase” in physical activity. Because of…...

8 thoughts on “Day 762: Growth Mindset by Andrew Huberman

  1. Talents can be a “birthday present” and can be there with little or no effort.
    The choice to continue in the face of resistance comes from within- from character. That is what champions are made of, and that’s what champions do..

    “Carlos says:
    August 28, 2023 at 7:58 pm

    Thank you for sharing this journey Adam. Once again you are an inspiration. You fought against setbacks, hardships, and won! Sue and I have witnessed your determination, reevaluation, reset, then your decision to continue. You did not let the past define you, for that I see you as a champion, because you stuck with it- you didn’t give up or quit. Its undeniable because the pictures confirm the story.

    1. Amazing Carlos, reading back what you wrote back on August 28, you emphasised effort and not quitting! This is precisely what that podcast was talking about, and I appreciate your innate ability to know the type of feedback that works! I also thought more about this last night. One of the big reasons why I crashed so hard after 2009 was attaching my identity fully to “that” guy on the blog, the effort areas that got me there receded into the background. It was a devastating psychological blow when I could no longer uphold that “successful” identity as a fitness guy.

  2. G’day Adam,

    I am halfway through the Huberman podcast and as you say it is a very refreshing and thought-provoking approach that has plenty of merit. I haven’t finished because I need to get to the gym so just wanted to make sure I said “thanks for sharing”. Love it.

    I like your time machine photos, there has obviously been a lot of hard work, persistence and effort associated to these photos.

    You will note I used plenty of verbs in my praise as Huberman suggests – haha

    Take care Ad


    1. G’day Phil! I agree mate, I think a lot of his tools do have merit, and because they are behavioural in nature it doesn’t cost anything to implement. I listened to another of his podcast regarding learning more effectively (under nuero plasticity banner) and I’ve started playing “binaural beats” (rather than grunge music!) while studying and has also helped me focus. On the time machine I actually do read which ever post it was and I am always a little surprised about what I wrote back then!

      Have a great week Phil! (Pity about the Sharkies too mate)

  3. The Sharkies will need to reset for another year .

    I have sadly put my face paint, banners and streamers away in the roof of my house for another 12 months. Just like the 2009 jeans, I wont throw them away and look forward to using them at another Sharkes GF.

    Panthers looking very solid for 2023.

    Have a great weekend Ad.

    1. Right on Phil, keep these banners you never know when you might need them again, could be next year (hopefully they don’t make us wait another 50 years though!). It will be a big week for Brissy, I might even do the unthinkable…and cheer for the Broncos against the Panthers!

  4. I’ve seen his video podcasts but haven’t listened in on a whole video yet. I’ll check this specific one out.
    I do feel many of us get caught in the trap of identifying with our outcomes, instead of our actions that got us to the desired outcome. I see how I’ve done that many times over the years.
    It’s our beliefs and how we act in accordance to our beliefs that define us.

    1. I agree Suzette, I have also done that many times before. I was listening to another of his podcasts this week about detachment, especially from desired outcomes. It kind of goes hand in hand with focusing on actions and effort rather than specific end results. Over time our daily actions will get us there, most likely not in a straight line, but consistency and persistence wins out in the end.

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