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The Anatomy of Success- Part 3

Updated: Feb 23, 2021

Grit - How is Your Perseverance?

I ended part 2 saying, “Having a Goal without understand the necessary Grind is pipe dream. Having a Goal and understanding the Grind, but not having the Grit to execute it, is a nightmare.”

What do I mean by “grit” and why do I think it is so important to success?

I see grit as the perseverance or the commitment to stick with the grind day after day after day because you believe in the goal. It is hanging in during tough times with the anticipation of better times. The absence of grit makes in the presence of a goal and grind is a nightmare because you know where you want to go, you have a plan for getting there, but lack the drive to make it happen. The responsibility for failure, then, cannot be shifted to anyone or anything other than one’s self. Grit is not about skill or opportunity, but about character.

Tristain Williams defines grit as “passion and perseverance for your goals over an extended period of time.”

In her book, Grit, Angela Psychologist Duckworth writes, “science shows that grit is the sustained application of effort towards a long-term goal is the biggest predictor of lifelong achievement.”

She says that we have the ability to increase our capacity for perseverance by increasing our focus in four specific ways:

  1. Develop fascination with what you're trying to do.

  2. Strive to improve each day.

  3. Remind yourself of a greater purpose.

  4. Adopt a growth mindset.

Entitlement does not prepare you for adversity

I believe that a grit killer is the sense of entitlement. If you have a sense of entitlement it means that you believe you are deserving of some particular reward or benefit. A young mentee told me that two factors contributed to his lack of gratitude. 1) Because his parents had worked hard to keep him from experiencing struggle, he did not now know how to struggle. 2) It is hard to be grateful for something that you have always had and therefore think it is your right to have it. Entitlement does not prepare you for adversity.

How do build grit?

  • Practice. Set small goals and work towards them. Increase the challenge level of the goals over a period of time.

  • People. Add people to your life who possess this characteristic. Make yourself accountable to them.

  • Purpose. Set small meaningful goals. Remember what I said in Part 1 about purpose – “Goals need to be more than a bucket list of desired experiences. They must be seen as road markers, as guideposts on the pathway to purpose. We are on earth for a reason.”

Grit or perseverance is not an innate skill or talent; it is a character trait. Character is developed through focus, desire and commitment. If you don’t want it, you won’t get it.

In part 4 of the Anatomy of Success, we will address Generations – how empowering others must be seen as foundational and fundamental to any success that we pursue.



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