How does grit effective growth and achievement?

“The only source of knowledge is experience” —Einstein

The underlying process of learning and memory are deliberative practice and repetition. Anything repeated overtime structurally and chemically alters your brain.

Angela Lee Duckworth, Ph.D.

“What mechanisms link grit to achievement? One important behavioral mechanism is deliberate practice, defined as practice activities designed to improve specific aspects of performance.”


In a study of finalists in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, Duckworth found: 

Gritter children completed more hours of deliberate practice, operationalized as the

study and memorization of word spellings and word roots in solitude.

A mediation analysis revealed that time spent on deliberate practice fully explained

the prospective  correlation between grit and spelling bee performance. Consistent

with the broader literature on deliberate practice and skill acquisition, practice

activities rated by spellers as more pleasurable and less effortful (e.g., reading for

pleasure, being quizzed by their parents) were dramatically less predictive of

spelling performance. Instead, it was the hardest, least pleasurable practice that

really paid off — and the grittiest kids who were able to do more of it.


Self-Coaching Challenge: Observe over the next few days in what ways are your kids demonstrating or not their grit in everyday day activities and relationships? The on a scale of 1 low to 10 high grit where do they land? What specific activities are you applying to help your kids to more mentally tough, gritty? or wimpy? After your evaluation develop a plan to support them to be more gritty. One way to do this is to help them to use deferred gratification ordeliberative practice and not always getting what they want immediately.