GROWING THE POST-PANDEMIC CHURCH & Angela Duckworth, author of the bestseller “Grit,” explains why, two years into the pandemic, even the grittiest people are quitting, stepping down, or scaling back. And, she suggests three things to do to address this.

by Danica Lo, Fast Company Magazine, 6/15/22.

It’s been six years since psychologist and University of Pennsylvania Professor Angela Duckworth published her bestseller Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance. After more than two years of behavioral and societal shifts that have drastically altered cultural values around work and achievement (see: the Great Resignation), Duckworth discusses Grit in hindsight in the first episode of The Next Chapter, a new podcast created for the American Express Business Class platform, out today.

For Duckworth, the tenets of Grit still hold true—that high-achievers are people who not only possess passion, but who also persevere. But, especially in these post-pandemic years, finding passion, or a directional focus, an be difficult and confusing. “For many of us, work ethic, getting feedback, practicing things we can’t yet do, being resilient—all that is easier than knowing what to be persevering about,” she says.

…“When someone is super-gritty, it’s because they’re pursuing something they really love and they actually feel there’s hope to make progress on [it],” Duckworth says. “One reason people might be burning out right now is that, for whatever reasons, there is some erosion of that hope that the future is bright for what they’re doing.”

…“The lesson in the pandemic is that if we want to be grittier or if we want to understand how to make other people grittier, there has to be some valid sense of hope for that person—that what they’re doing is going to be enough and that the future has some reason to believe that it’s brighter,” Duckworth says.

1. Mentorship …

2. Connect workers to a higher purpose

3. Establish a culture of grit …

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GRIT & How do you instill perseverance? #AngelaDuckworth #YouAreNotDumb

Want Your Kids to Succeed in School and Life? Science Says to Instill This 1 Thing Above All Else
by Melanie Curtin, Inc. Magazine, 10/23/17.

As she (Angela Lee Duckworth) explained in her TED talk, the research question was always the same: “Who is successful here, and why?”

As it turned out, there was an answer. One trait rose above all others. In contexts as disparate as West Point, the National Spelling Bee, private companies, and low-income schools, the one characteristic that emerged as highly predictive of success wasn’t IQ. It wasn’t social intelligence, nor was it good looks, physical health, or socioeconomic status.

What was it?


As Duckworth defines it, grit is, “passion and perseverance for long-term projects; having stamina; sticking with your future, day in, day out … and working really hard to make that future a reality.” (my emphasis)

How do you instill grit?

According to Duckworth, part of the answer lies in establishing a “growth mindset.”

Dr. Carol Dweck of Stanford University came up with this concept, and it’s basically the belief that you can improve your ability to learn–that it’s not fixed. Thus instead of “I’m smart” or, “I’m dumb,” (fixed states), it’s, “When I’m challenged, I get stronger.”

The reason this matters is that if a kid believes they’re “dumb” because, say, they got a wrong answer, they tend to stop trying. They become afraid of failing. But when kids in Dweck’s research studies read and learn about the brain (particularly how it grows in response to challenge), they become more brave, more resilient, more likely to try even harder things, more … gritty.

Why? Because they start to see that simply doing the hard thing helps them expand. That it doesn’t matter whether you get the answer right–it just matters that you try, and keep trying.

It’s a lesson we can all take to heart, especially since grit research showed something else totally fascinating: there is no relationship or an inverse relationship between grit and talent. Hang on and make sure you got that last part — inverse means the less talented you are, the more gritty you are likely to be … which may be exactly what leads to your success.

In other words, data backs up the fact that you truly don’t have to be the best in the class, or get into the most prestigious tech accelerator, or be the most talented graphic designer at your firm to succeed.

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GRIT & Angela Duckworth’s 5-elements of GRIT (& her seminal TED video)

by Eric Barker, Wired Magazine, 12 May 2016.

Ever feel like you just wanna give up on something? How can you develop the inner strength necessary to achieve your long term goals?

Turns out that grit — the perseverance that keeps us going — is a lot more important than you might think. In fact, it’s the best predictor of success among West Point cadets.

From Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us:

The best predictor of success, the researchers found, was the prospective cadets’ ratings on a noncognitive, nonphysical trait known as “grit”—defined as “perseverance and passion for long-term goals.”

Stanford researcher Catharine Cox studied 301 eminent historical figures. What conclusion did she come to?Persistence beats smarts.

From Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance:

“…high but not the highest intelligence, combined with the greatest degree of persistence, will achieve greater eminence than the highest degree of intelligence with somewhat less persistence.”

So we all need more grit. But how do we get there? I decided to call an expert…

In 2013 Angela Duckworth was awarded the MacArthur “Genius” Award for her work on grit.

She’s a professor at the University of Pennsylvania and author of the book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance.

Here’s her TED talk:

…Here’s what Angela says will build that inner strength and make you gritty:

• Pursue what interests you: You’re not going to stick it out if you don’t care.
• Practice, practice, practice: It’s not just how you get to Carnegie Hall. We love doing things we’re good at.
• Find purpose: How does what you do help others? That’s what makes a job into a calling.
• Have hope: No “wishing on a star” here, pal. Have hope because you are going to make it happen.
• Join a gritty group: Mom was right; spend time with slackers and you’ll be a slacker.

So you do all of these things and become a Tyrannosaurus of grit. Awesome. Know what else you will be?


Angela surveyed 2000 people and the results were clear: “I found that the grittier a person is, the more likely they’ll enjoy a healthy emotional life.”

And it’s not some lazy, starry-eyed contentment. Gritty people strive every day and enjoy new challenges. That’s the exciting kind of happiness. Here’s Angela:

I was talking to Brad Stevens who’s the coach of the Boston Celtics. He said, “I’ll never be the coach I want to be, but it sure is fun trying.” It’s not that gritty people are necessarily content in the comfortable sense, but they are content in the sense that they enjoy the pursuit of excellence and there’s nothing they’d rather do than keep trying to get better everyday.

Everyone today is concerned with work-life balance. It’s nice to know that the same quality that can make you a success in your career can help promote happiness at home.

You should never give up on being happy. Or better yet: never give up on yourself…

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PESERVANCE & How to Develop “Grit” in Your Kids: 3 Rules by #UPenn #psychologist #AngelaDuckworth

“A UPenn psychologist uses the ‘Hard Thing Rule’ to teach her kids to take control of their success” by Shana Lebowitz, Business Insider Magazine, 5/8/16.

…Angela Duckworth, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania whose new book, “Grit,” offers research and anecdotal evidence on how passion and perseverance lead to success.

Towards the end of the book, Duckworth gives readers a glimpse into how she applies her findings on grit in her own life, specifically with her two daughters…

The Hard Thing Rule has three parts:

1. Everyone in the family has to do something that’s hard.

Specifically, Duckworth said, it has to be “something that requires practice, something where you’re going to get feedback telling you how you can get better, and you’re going to get right back in there and try again and again.”

2. You have to finish what you start.

“…Or if I’ve paid the tuition for your set of piano lessons, you’re going to take all those lessons and you are, as you promised your teacher, going to practice for those lessons.”

3. No one gets to pick the hard rule for anyone else.

“Even when my kids were five [and] six years old,” Duckworth said, “they were given some choice in what their hard thing was.”

“I think it’s very important to send the message that, while parents are needed to remind you to practice and occasionally force you to finish things … they also need to learn to respect you. You as an individual ultimately are the captain of where you’re going…”

The point is for parents to help their kids find something they’re interested in and then help grow that interest, while at the same time modeling grit and showing how far it can take you.

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