Evolving Fixed Mindsets: The 4-Minute Mile and the 100-Year Life.

October 25, 2022

Evolving Fixed Mindsets: The 4-Minute Mile and the 100-Year Life.

May 29, 2023

Born before the Great Depression and living until just four years ago, Roger Bannister didn’t quite make it to the 100-year mark of his life. But he will forever be remembered as the first human being to run a four-minute mile.

Before his achievement, for nearly a century, sports enthusiasts suggested no human could break a four-minute mile. There was almost a collective mindset that this was an impossible feat. Bannister proved it was possible, not just physically but also psychologically.

An Australian runner broke the barrier 46 days after Bannister’s feat. Within a year, three runners broke the four-minute barrier in a single race. Over the last half-century, more than a thousand runners have conquered a barrier that was once considered hopelessly out of reach.

It’s miraculous what happens when a collective mindset shifts.

When Bannister broke the four-minute mile, there were only 23,000 centenarians worldwide, one in every 100,000. It was almost unheard of to live that long, and virtually no one aspired to be a centenarian. And, yet, by the turn of the century, we had almost 157,000 centenarians, which quadrupled by 2020, and is expected to be 2.5 million by 2040.

In short, we will have more than 100 times as many centenarians in 2040 as we did in 1950! Perhaps, it’s time we imagined a world in which reaching 100 might be normal, especially among kids born today. I highly recommend reading “The 100-Year Life” by Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott if this subject interests you.

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