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BackTable / Urology / Podcast / Episode #71

How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine

with Dr. Rena Malik

In this episode of BackTable Urology, Dr. Angie Smith (UNC Chapel Hill) and Dr. Rena Malik (University of Maryland) discuss practical tips for developing a growth mindset in medicine.

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How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine with Dr. Rena Malik on the BackTable Urology Podcast)
Ep 71 How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine with Dr. Rena Malik
00:00 / 01:04

BackTable, LLC (Producer). (2022, December 21). Ep. 71 – How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine [Audio podcast]. Retrieved from

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Podcast Contributors

Dr. Rena Malik discusses How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine on the BackTable 71 Podcast

Dr. Rena Malik

Dr. Rena Malik as an associate professor and the director of Female Pelvic Medicine & Reconstructive Surgery at the University of Maryland in Baltimore.

Dr. Angie Smith discusses How to Unlock a Growth Mindset in Medicine on the BackTable 71 Podcast

Dr. Angie Smith

Dr. Angela Smith is the Director of Urologic Oncology at the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center in North Carolina.

Show Notes

First, Dr. Malik defines growth mindset as the belief that you can do something or accomplish something that you don’t know how to do yet. Both doctors agree that adopting this mindset also requires expecting failures along the way, asking for help, and sharing your vulnerabilities with colleagues and trainees. Then, both of them share personal experiences about when developing growth mindsets were difficult for them and how they overcame self-doubt.
Dr. Malik suggests journaling to think about long-term goals and assess personal obstacles. Dr. Smith encourages doctors to set aside time for self care and reflection.

Next, the doctors discuss how to cultivate a growth mindset in situations they might not wholeheartedly enjoy all the time, like seeing patients in the clinic instead of being in the operating room. Dr. Smith shares how meaningful conversations with her patients brought her joy in the clinic and advocated for more time to engage in these conversations. Dr. Malik was able to streamline her charting through a detailed intake form and utilizing dot phrases so she could spend less time charting in the office and at home.

Finally, the doctors discuss ways to encourage their colleagues to adopt a growth mindset as well. Both agree that encouraging colleagues to question their negative attitudes and stopping the propagation of negative attitudes and stories is helpful to building a more positive workplace environment.


Disclaimer: The Materials available on are for informational and educational purposes only and are not a substitute for the professional judgment of a healthcare professional in diagnosing and treating patients. The opinions expressed by participants of the BackTable Podcast belong solely to the participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views of BackTable.

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