As you think ahead to the new year and picture what you want to accomplish, grit is the first trait you’ll need to succeed.
So, what is grit, and how do we cultivate it? Unfortunately, there’s no simple answer to find that sweet spot between perseverance and passion. To better grasp it’s potential, let’s delve into its impact on success and what that means for our future goals. Here’s how to strengthen your stick-to-it-iveness and start getting gritty:
“Grit is living life like it’s a marathon, not a sprint,” says Angela Duckworth, the psychologist, genius grant recipient and author who spearheaded studies around the trait. Her research illustrates that talent may not be the best indicator of success in the long term. Surprisingly, neither is IQ. According to Duckworth, the magic recipe is a seamless blend of hunger and persistence. The key indicator of a top performer isn’t whether they have the natural abilities or gifts to cross the finish line, it’s whether they have the drive.
In a nutshell, it’s effort. It’s tenacity. It’s finding a long-term goal that you’re passionate about, and having the stamina to see it through.
How to cultivate it:
Like most skills in life, grit gets better with practice. Anyone can learn to be gritty. No matter what your goals may be (landing that dream job, learning a new language, getting a promotion or growing your business), grit can get you there.
The important thing is to find something you love and stick with it. We know the job search can mean rejection, but that doesn’t mean you give up. Grit is about bouncing back, being tenacious, and demonstrating strength of character. To be truly gritty, embrace the challenges and embrace the failures. They are all necessary lessons that can lead to long-term success. If your dream job is at the finish line, mirror the marathon runner and take everything in stride: one step at a time.
In the words of Angela Duckworth, “To be gritty is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. To be gritty is to hold fast to an interesting and purposeful goal. To be gritty is to invest, day after week after year, in challenging practice. To be gritty is to fall-down seven times, and rise eight.”
If a client turns you down, or you don’t get an interview, keep grinding. Think of set-backs as lessons and try to stay optimistic. Grit is cultivated through commitment. Show up, and keep showing up, even when the going gets tough. That’s how getting gritty will be your first key to succeed.