Friday, January 25, 2008

True Grit

Below are some excerpts from a provocative article titled True Grit published in the Winter 2007 Penn Arts & Sciences Magazine.

Author Priya Ratneshwar writes:

Nature or nurture? Inspiration or perspiration? Most of us have wondered whether success is due more to the talents we’re born with or to the choices we make. [UPenn] Assistant professor of psychology Angela Duckworth...determined there was one personal characteristic shared by most prominent leaders in every field: grit.

...Defined as “perseverance and passion for long-term goals,” grit is differentiated from the closely related trait of self-discipline.... The latter involves the ability to resist temptation and stay focused on accomplishing tasks immediately at hand.... Grit, however, goes further than self-discipline and involves a commitment to very long-term goals that does not waver in the face of failure or adversity.

Now, here’s the part I like best:

[Duckworth’s] study also determined that older individuals tend to be higher in grit than younger ones, which suggests that the trait might increase over a person’s life.

To download the full article, click here and scroll down to True Grit.

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