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Grit to Great book cover

Grit to Great

You may have personal projects that require “grit” and a passion for long-term goals. In this book the authors, Thaler and Koval, illustrate how grit can be developed through Guts, Resilience, Initiative and Tenacity.
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Grit to Great — How perseverance, passion, and luck take you from ordinary to extraordinary

Grit has been proven to be important to children’s academics, life and physical success. Dr. Angela Duckworth won a MacArthur ‘genius’ award for her research on grit, when her book, Grit, came out. For this book, the authors draw on their own experiences, as well as the stories of friends and colleagues, and some research (Duckworth gets a nod), to illustrate how grit can be developed through Guts, Resilience, Initiative and Tenacity (although their book does not follow this structure, which I found confusing). While Thaler and Koval’s case studies of individuals overcoming the odds (socio-economic setbacks, rejections, health difficulties, etc) are inspiring, it’s vital to note that none of those individuals did it alone. Parents supported children, mentors supported mentees, teachers supported students, husbands supported wives, and communities were created as the initiators’ ideas took flight. So, I would have added another element of grit: support. I admit that I’m also disturbed by the number of individuals who are applauded for working long hours, sacrificing sleep and toiling to the point of exhaustion. I realize that this is what gritty people may choose to do, but I’m not convinced it’s a pre-requisite for success. While grit is important towards long-term goal achievement, it’s also important to recognize the support from others and to take care of oneself. You won’t achieve your goals on your own through running yourself into the ground.