Give us a call on +44 (0)20 3326 6289
Home Blog Building resilience What is Grit and how do you get it?

What is Grit and how do you get it?


When we’re looking at the most important ingredients for success we’re likely to say talent, intellect, and a healthy dose of good luck. However, according to research from psychologist, Angela Duckworth, and others at the University of Pennsylvania, the real most important ingredient in finding success is grit.

"Success in the real world depends on sustained performance, on being able to work hard at practice," explained Wired in a review of Duckworth's research – you can watch her TED talk here. It also says "factors like grit are often the most predictive variables of real world performance," and "Our most important talent is having a talent for working hard."

That’s all well and good, as long as you’re naturally persistent and single-minded, persevering until you achieve your goals. What if you’re lacking in grit (like me!)? Can we do anything to change that and become grittier?

Well, there are a lot of people hard at work looking for an answer to that question. There is a really interesting article from Emma Young on the BBC, which looks at the variety of programs being developed that will help youngsters exercise and enhance their grit.

8 Factors you need to be Gritty

Dennis Charney of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York City and Steven Southwick of the Yale School of Medicine spoke with people, including U.S. special forces soldiers and Pakistani earthquake victims, who coped well with a variety of incredibly stressful life experiences and identified 10 factors the most resilient among us demonstrate which allow them to keep going in the face of the most trying of times.

  • Facing fear
  • "Realistic" optimism
  • Having a moral compass
  • Having good role models
  • Making sure your brain is challenged
  • Using social support
  • Having "cognitive and emotional flexibility"
  • Having "meaning, purpose, and growth" in life

So how do you obtain these traits?

The things we are passionate about can involve challenge and adversity. Our passions are often things we have not yet mastered, but inspire us and drive us to improve. So push on, keep going. In order to make anything happen you’ve got to keep at it. Persist. Persevere. Stick with it. There will be days, possibly months, when you won’t want to. Of course there will be setbacks that make you want to quit, but by acting gritty, by pushing on even when you feel like throwing in the towel, you’ll actually get stronger.

It seems that whilst grit is pretty rare, the good news is we can get grittier with a little extra focus and effort.

Building resilience


5 Ways you can Achieve Flow 18 April 2018, 00.00 Sharon
5 Ways you can Achieve Flow
Often described as a state of mind in which you can experience total immersion and involvement in what you’re doing, where things happen effortlessly and time disappears, flow is what athletes often call “being in the



Protect. Enable. Strengthen. Flourish. Your business is in their heads.