How did Albert Einstein have a growth mindset?

how did Albert Einstein have a growth mindset

Albert Einstein was one the greatest scientist of the 21st century. The Noble Prize in Physics 1921 winner, he revolutionized the way we look at physics and the universe. His theory of relativity has impacted the way, how we study space and time.

If you have come here to know, how did Albert Einstein have a growth mindset? then you are at the right post.

In this post, I have listed down three important incidents from his life that shows his growth mindset nature.

albert einstein growth mindset

Here, I have given three examples from his life which shows that he had a growth mindset. These three incidents are:

1. encounter with a compass at the age of five

When Einstein was five years old, his father gifted him a magnetic compass for play. This compass always amazed him when he went on to play with it. Every time whenever playing with it, he was curious with this thing that, in which ever direction he used to point it, the needle always pointed to the magnetic north.

This simple compass made him wonder how invisible forces are deflecting the needle. In his Autobiographical Notes, he writes that “That this needle behaved in such a determined way did not at all fit in the kind of occurrences that could find a place in the unconscious world of concepts (efficacy produced by direct “touch”). I can still remember — or at least believe I can remember — that this experience made a deep and lasting impression upon me. Something deeply hidden had to be behind things.”

This ignited a curiosity in him to learn and the rest is history.

what growth mindset traits are shown by Albert Einstein here?

He wanted to know the answer to why compass needle always points to magnetic north.

This type of question when he was just a 5 year old boy. This brings out traits like learning new concepts, asking questions mindset, observer.

2. at 16: A question that need an answer

Quick context: Einstein was learning higher mathematics and philosophy from a medical student, Max Talmud. Talmud had given a book by Aaron Bernstein on physical science. In the book, the author was imagining riding alongside electricity inside a telegraph wire.

This made Einstein to think. He put up a question in his mind. That question was: What would a light beam look like if you could run alongside it?

When he got a clerk job at the Swiss patent office in Bern(1904), he started working on this question in his free time. This led to the formulation of principle of relativity.

Growth mindset characteristics of Einstein here:

Time management, passion for a vision, no excuses.

3. getting admission in swiss federal polytechnic school

Einstein wanted to to get admission in the Swiss Federal Polytechnic School. The school required an entrance test to be cleared for admission. Einstein gave the test. He got excellent graded in mathematics and physics, but he can’t clear French, chemistry, and biology papers.

Having got good grades in mathematics and physics, he was allowed in the school, but with a condition. He had to complete his formal schooling first. He took admission in a high school and graduated from there.

What kind of traits shown by him here:

Not giving up attitude, taking up challenges.


Albert Einstein has great contribution in contemporary physics and related sciences. Because of his nature to ask questions, many scientific discoveries and theories were postulated by him.

These examples that I described above clearly shows that he had a growth mindset.

For more information on growth mindset, you can check my article: Einstein growth mindset.





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