Embrace the 1% Better Rule: Cultivating a Growth Mindset in College

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Growth Mindset one percent better

In the fast-paced world of academia, where deadlines loom large and expectations run high, the pursuit of perfection can often feel overwhelming. As college students, we’re constantly striving to excel in our studies, extracurricular activities, and personal endeavors. Yet, amidst the pressure to achieve greatness, it’s easy to lose sight of the power of incremental progress. In this article, we’ll explore the concept of the 1% Better Rule and why adopting a growth mindset is essential for success in college.

Understanding the 1% Better Rule

The 1% Better Rule is a simple yet powerful philosophy that advocates for continuous improvement through small, incremental changes. Instead of aiming for monumental leaps of progress, the focus is on making tiny adjustments and improvements each day. Whether it’s mastering a new skill, improving a habit, or refining your study techniques, the goal is to consistently strive for marginal gains over time.

The beauty of the 1% Better Rule lies in its accessibility and sustainability. Rather than feeling daunted by the prospect of radical transformation, you’re encouraged to embrace the journey of gradual improvement. By breaking down your goals into manageable steps and focusing on making small, consistent progress, you can achieve remarkable results over time. In fact, if you improve in any area by just 1% every day, at the end of a year you will be 37 times better at that thing!

Embracing a Growth Mindset

At the heart of the 1% Better Rule is the concept of a growth mindset—a belief that our abilities and intelligence can be developed through dedication and hard work. In contrast to a fixed mindset, which assumes that our talents and capabilities are innate and unchangeable, a growth mindset thrives on the belief that we can always learn, grow, and improve.

In college, cultivating a growth mindset is essential for navigating the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. Whether you’re grappling with a difficult course, facing rejection from a prestigious program, or grappling with imposter syndrome, a growth mindset empowers you to persevere in the face of adversity.

The Power of Small Wins

One of the key principles of the 1% Better Rule is the emphasis on celebrating small wins along the way. In the pursuit of long-term goals, it’s easy to become fixated on the end result and overlook the progress we’ve made along the way. However, by acknowledging and celebrating each small victory, we reinforce our commitment to growth and build momentum towards our larger objectives.

In college, where success is often measured by grades, achievements, and accolades, it’s important to recognize that progress comes in many forms. Whether it’s mastering a challenging concept, overcoming a fear of public speaking, or forging meaningful connections with peers, every step forward is worthy of celebration.

Practical Strategies for Implementation

So, how can college students apply the principles of the 1% Better Rule and cultivate a growth mindset in their academic and personal lives? Here are some practical strategies to consider:

  1. Set Specific, Attainable Goals: Break down your long-term aspirations into smaller, actionable goals that you can work towards on a daily or weekly basis. Focus on measurable outcomes and track your progress over time.
  2. Prioritize Consistency Over Perfection: Rather than striving for flawless performance, prioritize consistency and effort in your pursuits. Aim to show up and give your best effort each day, knowing that small improvements will add up over time.
  3. Seek Feedback and Learn from Failure: Embrace feedback as a valuable tool for growth and development. Instead of viewing failure as a setback, see it as an opportunity to learn, adapt, and improve. Solicit input from professors, peers, and mentors to gain valuable insights and perspectives.
  4. Practice Self-Compassion: Be kind to yourself and recognize that growth is a gradual process. Instead of berating yourself for mistakes or setbacks, practice self-compassion and treat yourself with the same empathy and understanding that you would extend to a friend.
  5. Cultivate a Supportive Community: Surround yourself with peers, mentors, and role models who share your commitment to growth and learning. Lean on your support network for encouragement, accountability, and guidance as you navigate the ups and downs of college life.


In the journey of college life, success is not just about achieving perfection—it’s about embracing the process of growth and self-discovery along the way. By adopting the principles of the 1% Better Rule and cultivating a growth mindset, college students can unlock their full potential and thrive in both their academic and personal endeavors.

So, as you embark on this transformative chapter of your life, remember that every small step forward is a victory worth celebrating. Embrace the power of incremental progress, stay resilient in the face of challenges, and trust in your ability to learn, grow, and evolve. With dedication, perseverance, and a steadfast commitment to improvement, the possibilities for growth and achievement are endless.


Growth Mindset one percent better


Kurtis Vanderpool



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