‘Grit’ is a term I somewhat fell in love with months ago after watching a Ted Talk by Angela Lee Duckworth entitled, The Key to Success? Grit. At just over six minutes long, this is definitely worth a watch if you haven’t done so already. (Video below.)
Ah, and not to mention the recent remake of the movie True Grit, obviously may have played a part as well.
So, what is Grit, exactly?
Grit personality trait: in psychology is a positive, non-cognitive trait based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or endstate coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective. This perseverance of effort promotes the overcoming of obstacles or challenges that lie within a gritty individual’s path.
Earlier, I was watching another Design Talk video while working on other things, in preparation for my upcoming speech at my old college tomorrow night: Jonah Lehrer: The Origins of Creative Insight & Why You Need Grit. He opened with a story about Bob Dylan so I knew it’d be good. In it, he mentions a ‘grit test’ – so naturally being the nerd that I am, I was interested. And go figure, it was developed by Angela Lee Duckworth. Found it online: “The Grit Survey.“ I ranked 4 out of 5; not bad.
In an article by David Churchill of express.co.uk, he discussed a recent study done by the University of North Carolina. In this study, volunteers were given a series of mentally challenging tests to monitor the persistence and determination when facing roadblocks; difficult tests.
Researchers concluded: “Grit, a recently proposed personality trait associated with persistence for long-range goals, predicts success in part by promoting self-control, thus allowing people to persist in repetitive, tedious, or frustrating behaviours that are necessary for success.”
Then on psychcentral.com, I found a list of qualities that people with true grit are known to display:
- A clear goal
- Determination despite others’ doubts
- Self-confidence about figuring it out
- Humility about knowing it doesn’t come easy
- Persistence despite fear
- Patience for the small stuff that obscures the path
- A code of ethics they live by
- Flexibility in the face of roadblocks
- A capacity for human connection and collaboration
- A recognition that accepting help does not equate to weakness
- A focus and appreciation of each step in the journey
- An appreciation of other people’s grit
- A loyalty that never sacrifices connections along the way
- An inner strength that brings them to their goal