Ethan Redd & The Brightest Future

headshotA few weeks ago, we talked about Mindset – a person’s attitude toward something and how it influences their response to events and people.

Ethan Redd, a game designer and maker with his own company, Virtuso NeoMedia, was talking about it as well.

The link* below leads to a video compilation of talks from Independent Game Developers, presented in San Francisco at the annual Game Developers Conference this year.

Redd’s talk begins at 52:30. Let’s watch it now.

Content Warning: Mr. Redd expresses several opinions in his talk, one is political…he’s also a total nerd.

Finding the Balance

Discuss the following questions in a small group or with a partner.

  1. How is Mr. Redd’s talk related to Growth Mindset?
  2. Can you name one example from the talk that Mr. Redd believed inspired growth mindset in culture? A person? A TV show? Do you have your own example?
  3. Compare the following terms: optimist, pessimist. Which one best describes you, or which one best describes your first instinct or natural attitude?
  4. This is a tricky question: are there negative things about being an optimist?
  5. Here’s another one: are there positive things about being a pessimist?
  6. One more: are we always one or the other?



Tension, by Lorenzo Quinn

What happens when you stretch a rubber band too far? Oh, snap…

Tension is defined as two pulling forces that directly oppose one another.

Tensile strength is how much force a material can endure before snapping.

The ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior. The ability to accurately assess one’s strengths and limitations, with a well-grounded sense of confidence, optimism, and a “growth mindset.”
Identifying emotions
Accurate self-perception
Recognizing strengths

Most people are a mix of competing beliefs and attitudes, thoughts that we hold in tension with one another. Some of us are more naturally optimistic, ready to change the world! Some of us are more pessimistic, skeptical that the world can change. Many of us will shift between the two all of the time.

If you can tell which is you, optimist or pessimist, you can use that self awareness to alter your own perceptions. 

How? When you don’t know how to do something, what do you usually do?  

(If you want a little reminder about the Science behind altering our mindsets, revisit our slides here.)

Food For Thought

Have you ever tried to do something you didn’t feel like doing? Have you ever taken a risk when you were scared? Have you ever decided NOT to take a risk, even if you wanted to?

What makes people do the opposite of what they feel? What are some examples of acting against your instincts?

* The link is to an hour long session called “The Indie Soap Box”, which includes multiple speakers. All speakers have interesting things to say. Content Warning: a few use more colorful language, though it is not excessive. Just FYI.