Growth Mindset Podcast

90: Adversity to Advantage - Sam's Story with Petra Velzeboer

February 6th, 2020

Petra Velzeboer is a therapist, facilitator and executive coach. Through depression, anxiety, alcohol dependence and suicidal thoughts she reached her rock bottom at 25 and decided she had a choice: to learn how to truly live or to end her life now.

Over a decade of experimenting on strategies for success and learning everything about mindset and psychology, her life is 100% different than what it might have been! Her goal is to teach others who are near their rock bottom, to help them learn the fast track for improving their lives!

Petra and Adversity to Advantage

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Adversity to Advatange Podcast
Listen Notes


My name is Sam Harris. I am a British entrepreneur, investor and explorer. From hitchhiking across Kazakstan to programming AI doctors I am always pushing myself in the spirit of curiosity and Growth. My background is in Biology and Psychology with a passion for improving the world and human behaviour. I have built and sold companies from an early age and love coming up with unique ways to make life more enjoyable and meaningful.



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Episode Summary

We go deep on the topic of a growth mindset: what it means, how building a growth mindset can essentially solve all your problems and the tricky situations.

Sam found himself in which allowed him to practice these ideas. Sam shares how he’s learned to make good out of any situation by embracing fear!

We discuss:

  • Developing a Growth Mindset
  • The journey to becoming an entrepreneur
  • How to get excited by your FEAR
  • Showing up and coping with negative experiences
  • The effect of relentless action on our mental health
  • Habits & Practices to continue Growth Mindset
  • Setting your mindset up for growth

Everyone has the ability to learn any skill through hard work and perseverance, it really boils down to your mindset. Fear stops us from challenging ourselves. Crisis & trauma can sometimes be the catalyst for something better!

Top Tips

Don't be so Afraid of Failure

Survive, Don't Fall Apart and Life Goes On

Resilience. It’s the secret ingredient to success. If you can figure out how to stay the course and get back in the game after failure, you’ll go places and you’ll make the difference you were intended to make.

If you are going places, failure is just part of the deal, but that’s ok. You can fix failure. You can’t fix the things you never tried. You can’t undo those things you never attempted in the first place.

If you stop trying, you’ll always wonder about what could have been. That kind of regret is a heavy burden that a lot of people will bear because they played it safe, or maybe even failed a time or two and gave up.

Skill Breaks

We are living in a time when we do most of our work using our minds. We sit in front of computers to develop ideas and create stuff with our minds. The more new things you try, the more active your brain will be.

Even if you suck at something, the experience of learning and trying it out will still develop your mind.

Plan to learn a new skill every year. Pick up playing an instrument every year. Spend time learning this instrument like this will be something that you’re going to play for the rest of your life.

The next year learn to play a new sport. Something that you’ve never tried before. This will both improve your muscles and your mind.

Embrace the Things that Scares You

"An individual develops courage by doing courageous acts" — Aristotle

Fear is a bully. It tells you what to do, and when you obey it, it gains power. However, when you acknowledge what fear tells you but do the opposite, you build courage.

The most effective, scientific approach to eliminating fear is to systematically expose yourself to the thing that scares you, starting small and building tolerance as you work your way up.

The more you face fear down, the more control you have. Once we understand that, we can systematically expose ourselves to the things that scare us, and in that way, propel ourselves forward.


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