« Freakonomics Radio

246. How to Get More Grit in Your Life

2016-05-05 | 🔗
The psychologist Angela Duckworth argues that a person's level of stick-to-itiveness is directly related to their level of success. No big surprise there. But grit, she says, isn't something you're born with -- it can be learned. Here's how.
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Hey. This is Stephen Dublin, and this is freak announced radio before we get into today, show there's something I want to mention about our previous episode. It was called how to become great at just about anything and it looked at how the key to export performance is deliberate practice even more than natural Helen and at the end of the show, we did a call out for volunteers who would be willing to an role in a deliberate practice regimen to try to become excellent at whatever their passion about. We were thinking about picking five, or ten volunteers and following their pursuit for a series of pot, guess the place to rate by the way. If your interested is radio at freak now must not come. The good news is that we were inundated with replies more than twenty five hundred e mail, so for people who want to become great at all kinds of physical pursuits and sports, but also language coding, math drawing
gaming, calligraphy would carving dog training documentary film. Making even podcasting, you name it! Somebody out there once get great at it unbelievably inspiring to read all these email? So that is the Good NEWS. The bad news is that now we got twenty five hundred emails, which means it's gonna, take us a while to sort things through and to come up with a plan. So if you have written in, please be very, very patient, it also means that we are only going to be able to accept a tiny share, of the volunteers to be featured in the pot guess, although we are going to try to come up with a way for anyone who wants to build and followed their own deliberate practice schedule. So, thanks for your overwhelming interest, enthusiasm, and as always thanks for listening, ok, here's today show I wanted to find genius as something that you accomplish
herself as opposed to something it's given to you. Just the amount of experience performing may, in fact, a very limited chances to improve your performance. When I find people who treat it like a job who don't seem like it but have a natural talent, I think that often an indicator of someone who, when the going gets tough, they will not have great, is a fundamental difference between great unhappiness. Three north, my colleague, is sitting on a sofa whose families living room in Queens New York is twelve years old. His father, soon of us, is looking up dictionary words on a laptop reading them allowed show me.
Wall sham warm air willing or face its middle French from late Latin Sham Y, know the definition this small good lake antelope you ve, probably figured out the serene off, is preparing for spelling bee later this month he will be competing in the scripts national spelling Bee, the Superbowl of spelling bees Sham Y, see H, M M O. I
S show more. That's three. Now is not the first great speller in his family. A few years ago is older brother Aravind, one, the national Spelling Bee and the thirty thousand dollar prize orphans. Winning word Knievel from the british, canadian or NATO is a small, massive, leavened, dough cooked by boiling or steaming as with soups do or fruit. It's a dumpling, cannonade, o K and a I D Ye L, Canadian three not would, of course, also like to win he qualified for the mansion. Be by winning the New York Daily NEWS competition back in March, I won on the word Oscar military. Oh I see you eight c o why you are not a means,
Related to kissing between now and the national, be three not will be practising a law and practice special. Its noted, deliberate practice is vital if you wanna get really If anything, it may in fact be more important than the talent you're born with with the right kind of training. Any individual will be able to acquire abilities that were previous. Reviewed as only attainable if you had the right kind of genetic talent. That's what we talked about last weekend, economic Radiohead liberate practice can help anyone get really good it just about anything. So, let's assume you buy.
Into that. You really believe that talent is vastly overrated, and that was the right amount in the right kind of practice. You can excel right. Then here's a question: how are you supposed to push yourself to practice like that? Where does that dry come from. How can you increase your determination? Yours stick to it, Ignace your that's! What I'm looking for great great great great great here, grit. May I have the definition please. I define grit as passion and perseverance for a special the long term goals and what kind of questions we'd be asking about grip. What specifically, are greedy people like? What do it do when they wake up in the morning what beliefs to gritty people walk around within their heads, and since this is so improvement month at for economics. Radio. Let me ask you this: can someone who doesn't have a lot of grit learn to get some
my answer to that would be. Yes, you can I'm happy from W and why see studios this is freakin mix, radio podcast that explores the hidden side of everything. Here's your host, Stephen Governor the mentally grubbin jersey, as in many first generation, immigrant asian families. She says there is a lot of pressure to succeed, including intra familial pressure no matter what you did, you always heard about anti sullen so's sign uncle silences daughter who did it better faster first, so you would come home and say guess what I got
one thousand, eight hundred and twenty on my sats, and then you would hear. Oh that's too bad auntie, rose's son got one thousand. Six hundred did he took them in eighth grade pretty much. No matter what you did, you were kind of like a disappointment. These parents both emigrated. I'm China and met in the. U S and nineteen sixties, her mother, studying for an m f a in painting. Her father got his Phd in organic chemistry and took a job at Dupont. They had three kids and that was in the middle. We had a very I think: middle class upbringing in hell for bedroom two and a half house in the suburbs. If you ve seen the wonder years like that kind of a neighbourhood, in other words, it was kind of average average house average job in average children we set our debts, we says he just didn't think is kids had much natural talent One of his favorite sayings was you're. No genius, yeah yeah
oh genius. You know, I think, that we grew up a lot thinking that we were just failures and that we should say became a doctor for reproductive endocrinologist in private practice in Pennsylvania, but back when she was applying for cod, and was accepted by Cornell, an Ivy league school, her parents were disappointed that shouldn't get into Harvard Princeton or Yale. And my parents reaction was: oh, my god thank God. We still have energy hi, the Santa that is a much younger Stir Angie Lee a K. Angela now, Angela Lee Duckworth she did go to Harvard and to Oxford and she got a phd in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, but their dad's whole genius stick stayed with her think what my dad man, when he would say out of the blue, you know you're no genius is that I was
the smartest person that he had met that I wasn't leagues, smarter than other people, my age or people that he knew Duckworth Career has worked out pretty well, I'm scientific director and founder of the character lab and professor psychology at the University of Pennsylvania and now she's written a book. Oh yes, here comes the self promotion part. I am also author of a book called grit, the power of past Anne and perseverance. Duckworth focus is on education and research tries to understand how kids learn best. She used to teach seventh grade, math in New York City in the classroom, watching the successful kids and the unsuccessful ones. She came to the conclusion that, given students, natural abilities seem to matter a lot less than effort and grit. That's right! I want redefine genius. If you will, I think most people use the word genius. The way my dad means the word genius yo somebody who has an intellectual gift, which is far greater than what most people,
have in a given area, music or in mathematics in running or and dancing, and by that natural ability they're going to any. I think that is what most people is the word genius for, and then they all have. Their most people is the word genius for and then they all have their handy lists of geniuses that they think I like Mozart or Einstein. I wanted to find genius as Greece, Yes, that isn't necessarily effortless button fact great that is earned. However, you do on it, and so I wanted to find genius as something that you accomplish yourself as opposed to something it's given to you, and that brings us. I assume, therefore, to grit so talk about grit. First, followed start with how you define it I define grit as passion and perseverance for specially long term goals. Okay, so that sounds kind of like a no
rain or that everybody in their right mind would want to have more grit, rather than less of that. So surely your argument isn't simply that grit is a good thing to have its. That grit is what certain message of the book is not that great is a good thing, in particular. The message of the book is that, like So many other things about us that our good we can do something to intentionally cultivate grit in our us and in others that we care about. Well, can you start teaching me right now or anyone. Listening to this now liberated readier, I mean I want specific so on. It What to do. I know what not to do. I want to know how long I should expect these changes to take. I want to know if there are going to be relapses that I should be prepared for and so on. How do we see yeah it. When you talk about changing character or changing grit, it feels like we can't change that it. Just people are who they are, but we actually get to the specifics. You know what specifically are greedy peep
like what do they do and they wake up in the morning what beliefs to gritty people walk around within their heads. When you get to that level, specifics you realize gosh there's. No reason why these things couldn't be taught practiced or learned Duckworth has learned what she's learned about grip in two main ways, one by conducting in depth. Your views with high achievers business people, athletes, musicians and so on, paragons of grit. She calls them and to buy following groups of people like new cadets at West Point or students in the Chicago schools and seeing whether a person's long term success corresponds to their grit score will hear later how she calculates escorts through her research, Duckworth has identified for traits that greedy people have in abundance, interest, practice, purpose and hope
Let's start with the first thing. I think that gritty people develop in the order in which they develop it, which is interest. So one thing that I found about paragons of good in a real outliers and passion and perseverance as that they have extremely well developed interests. They they cultivate, something which, grabs their attention initially, but that they become from. Clear with enough knowledgeable enough that they wake up the next day and the next day the next year and there still interested in this thing- and I think that is thing that we can actually intentionally decide? I want to be the kind of person who is stays twisted in something and so that passion really does have to come. First. What about, however, if I or my kid or some of that, I really care about it from the teacher my students, what if they can't find a passion yeah, I don't know if there are men, commencement speeches given these days that don't actually exhort people to follow their passion. I think that just strikes the fear of God into people, because they then
think. Oh my god at all have one now, I'm really screwed and I think the idea of folly being a passion is just the wrong way to phrase. It fall your passion sounds like it's: there and the world fully formed you just have to like dig it up under the right Bush. Really you have to foster a passion you have to active. We put some work, try things and try them for a little while and get into them in and we have to switch rate. Part of grit is actually doing enough exploration early on quitting enough things early on that you can find something that you're willing to stick with Sir I dont know that there is an easy prescription, then for telling people how exactly to do that. But I one misunderstanding which is very dangerous is to suggest a people that passion just sort of falls into your lap and its love at first sight. It's not like that. It's not like that for the people that I've been studying and what happens if I'm interested in something to a degree of passionate, but then my passion shifts
time do I feel like. I am therefore a loser that I'm an anti grid, as you know, I used to think I was No, but now I think I'm a dilatory so have you handle that one of the psychologist I interviewed said shame is usually not helpful as an emotion- and I would second that so now I dont believe people should be rate themselves for deciding that they don't wanna go. Medical school after all, but I will say this: it is human nature. She get bored of thing, and to seek the novel, and I think that one of those gills that one must develop in life if one care is not to be a dilettante. If it's a goal of yours to become expert in something one of the skills is to learn to substitute nuance for novelty. I love that idea to substitute nuance. For novelty so, rather than constantly moving on to a new thrill, you try to find
another level, another dimension of the thing you're already doing to make it more thrilling whether it's a research project. Or in our a breast stroke or a souffle wherever you're interests lie think, there's something of a skill there that needs to be acquired. Otherwise we will default that natural human. And then see to click on another hyper lincoln, go somewhere entirely new. Ok. So if interest is the first treat that gritty people tend to possess? and you say that is kind of the the Bedrock foundation, yes, that these are attained in order here. Yes, right as a developmental. Most people just get interested in something, and then some people cultivate those interests on those. Get development deepened and then that second stage is practice particularly deliberate practice, the kind of delivery- practice that kind of went viral. When Malcolm Gladwell wrote outliers. We got into that in our previous episode. The Gladwell
version in outliers, which is built around something called the ten thousand our rule. Sometimes it's called the ten year rule so called because the average number of hours of effort for practice. Were ten thousand hours over ten years, but the real good rule of deliberate practice is Anders Ericsson, author of the book peak and I'm a professor of psychology at Florence that university and tell the House if Florida there for several components to deliberate practice, but generally it's about using good feedback to focus on specific techniques that will lead to real improvement. So any time you can Oh yes, your performance on improving one aspect that is the most effective way of improving performance, Angela Duckworth, in pursuit of a better understanding of grit has collaborated with Andrews Eriksson, on research about deliberate practice. The second stage really does have this quality laboring in a very myths,
article way and in a a fun way for most people to get better and better at this thing that you ve become interested in. I think that is a conflict at least I personally, I know a lot of people that I know come up against, which is that if you try to force yourself or will yourself into becoming awesome at something that you don't have that true passion for then the practice does become a sort of slow form of torture as opposed to a kind of work that you're willing to go through because you love the underlying thing, even if you don't love playing that e minor scale for the eighteen hundredth time today. I completely agree, and I think that is why interests must come first and I think there are a lot of were eager, probably very well intentioned parents out there who are kind of like changing their kids to the Yeah no bench in hopes that you know that seventh, our
practice today's gonna again and put them on course for Juilliard or or Harvard and a their seriously I'm getting things out of order. I If you'd rowdy gains the nineteen eighty four gold medalist in the hundred metre freestyle represent, the United States- and you know he estimate that in the years up to the Olympics are where he won that Gordon, Oh, he swam equivalent to around the world right in a roughly twenty thousand miles, and so I TIM. You know, do you love practice and said? Are you asking me if I love getting up at four in the morning, jumping into a cold pool and swimming lapses and a black line on the bottom. You know at the very edge of my physical ability, where my lungs or screaming for oxygen arms for like they're about to fall off. No, I don't buy it. I love the whole thing you know. I have a passion for the whole sport and so that passion really does have to come. First, such passion plainly comes in many flavors olympic competition sure but
also spelling gave. The first word is allemande. Cannot the definition that again is twelve year three, not man, Kali and his dad is seventeenth century and eating. Since she could dance developed in France, Allemande a l, l, p M A and the island. It isn't just the competition that excite serene us, it's the words themselves I have a passion for words, because I just dont really understand why they put it together in this sort of way late when they got words from foreign languages. Why did they make it spell this way that way his mother Vonny remembers what
Alderson Aravind, caught the spelling, bug hastily ridden and made us when visiting Lecter, greater second greater. He was watching scripts national willingly on tv, and then he came out with it book, and he was writing or because he wanted to be on not of inside awaiting them down those words, and I said they wanted this amount will act. I forgot their small kids so impressed with the small children, Standing there and asking all the rude questions on our does fascinating. I always thought that this is only for some other I'm not going to make MIKE. It's do I always thought, but this is most watchword: market three north at each six memorizing, the winning words at the National Spelling Bee. He learned the diet, critical marks in the dictionary denote pronunciation. His parents wound up coaching Now I gotta give a lot of things. My parents, they look, there
dictionary. They look for interesting words. Some of them are too long. Some of them have several different spellings. Some of them are to shore instead, three. His parents focus on interesting, spellings and patterns on french and joy in spanish words, we can master foreign prefixes and Suffix is in case similar words come up hand up and willingly face, it's from Middle English from Middle French and then he practices and practices and practices, depending, of course on how much homework yes hand up H, a and a p Hannah, that's correct among the many high achievers that Angela Duckworth has studied. Are national spelling bee contestants do not be surprised to learn that high grit scores translate into high spelling scores and that the style and intensity of practice are extremely
portent carry close, who won the National Spelling Bee one year that we studied. It said the one thing that very greedily, studying for the national spelling Bee for five years in Iraq, as you want her fifth year of competition was just the ability to take a large something and break it up into little tasks and are fraction. Eight things so they're not so overwhelming, and then you can do them. So that is the second step It's about doing things you can't yet do, and that too I think people. Could you ask the question? What do you think kids could learn how to practise in that way. Could adults who really want to pick up something new? Could they learn that I think they can if interest comes first practice follows what's next the third stages? Purpose connecting your work or even your hobby, if that's where you're real passion is to people who are not you,
so it's beyond the self purpose that I'm particularly observing in grit paragons and I used to think more ok will, of course, that will apply to people who are working on the curate, a cancer or people who are working in community organization, but in fact even athletes, though you might say, ok what to doing something had us office right the trying to win the gold medal for themselves, but even these people who have ostensibly very personal, or you could argue selfish interests. They really see how their work is connected to other people. Athletes will say they feel connected to their teammates to the sport as a whole. So I think that this third stage doesn't happen at the front for most people. Ok and the final component of grit, the final component is hope, and I won't say that you only need that after you ve been doing something for twelve or fifteen years, really do need hope from beginning to end, because of course,
no matter where you are in your journey. There, we're gonna be potholes in detours, Things that might make you think that it's not worth staying on this path, so hope centrally is the belief that there's something you can do to come back from these problems are from these challenge. And I say it: you know that it's the fourth component, but it's really something that you need at very. Degrees in varying ways all along. So when you're writing about hope and you link it to optimism, and you talk about the difference between optimists and pessimists, and you write that optimistic people, tend to perform better in school in their work that their health is better than pessimistic people, but whenever it peace. Research like this, I wonder, will how do we know that the people that are identified as optimists aren't optimistic because their better often life, and how do we know that the pessimists are pessimistic, because they're having a hard time, and that the arrow isn't going in the other direction. It's a really good question,
and then I think, you're, partly right by the way. Why would somebody be optimistic? I think in part is because they enjoy virtuous cycle of believing that they can change things looking for ways that they can improve their situation? Putting forth effort fact making some change in the situation for the better reaping. Whose rewards and the whole cycle starts over again right and you can imagine the vicious cycle for pessimism This is what actually happens in particular, for example, with clinical depression. When you have it stream, a pessimistic outlook that says I'm hopeless, nothing that I can do, because I'm a loser, but I'm not gonna, go a party I'm not gonna, take that job interview. Ok, well, then happens social isolation, unemployment that confirms our intuition that everything's awful you should have produced the evidence for yourself that you were causality. I would just call it part of this rule, you're being you no more entrenched in that pessimistic state. So your very well
the correct that there is a bit of this reverse causality. I would just call it part of this reciprocal causality, that Reno just things coming up on pregnant radio, how to measure your own grit score so on a scale from one to five, where five would be very much like me, and one would be not at all like me also how learn grit early in life. School forces you to do all sorts of things you. Like to swim in a really cold pool. To learn French or to write humanity. Papers about Lord of the flies, and I hope that you have heard so far. Has you feeling pretty good about up in your grit, because apparently this is pretty important to you. I'm my name's Nick from Sidney's father. This hysteria rap net from Dallas Texas on misleading, continues a german Alameda California. I would most like to improve my great marble
Brain to tell me that my body can that last and I'm gonna think about projects which I never start or starting them, which I never finished finishing Newman, leaving the aftermath, IRAN to be cleaned up months or even years later thing of away. It is early projects, which I never start or starting them, which I never finished, or even finishing Newman, leaving the aftermath around to be cleaned up months. Even years later being overweight is really stupid, and I'd really like to improve my credit so that I can resolve this problem once and for all. So that's the one thing I really liked him the most my great. Why with it so Levitt? Let me ask you this question: how, Were you think of grit? How would you rate yourself on a scale of one to five on greediness? I
am not very gritty when it comes to things I dont like that's my free economics friend and CO author, Steve Levitt, he's an economist at the University of Chicago, almost every day as I watch my kids go to school, I think about how glad I'm not in school anymore, school forces you to do all sorts of things. You eight like due to swim in a really cold pool or to learn French or to write humanity's for his about Lord of the flies things that I really wouldn't want to have to do, and at this point I have no great for things like that, but for things that I have an intrinsic interest in, I am credibly Grady. I would say I am about the prettiest golfer who's ever walked the planet. I mean so you and I know we played seventy two holes in two days and at the who, though, seventy two hawes I? What do we go back to the driving range, maintain the putting green kid? I felt like there's so much work to be done in the past,
snow round me and mild Levitt very much subscribes to the passion argument, one I have always used as an indicator? Who will be an excellent economist? Is the people the most so even if they dont have allowed talent, even if they haven't had a lot of good publications. When I talk to people who of economics more than anything else in the world. I know that ten years there still going to be working as hard as they can to try to get the answers. When I find people who treat it like a job who don't seem to like it, but have a natural talent, I think that if an indicator of someone who, when the going gets tough, they will not have great. But let's back up a minute, how can you tell How gritty somebody actually is we're going to try to figure out how important it is and success need to be able to measure their grit right. These are the kind of questions that are central to Angela Duckworth Research, questions that don't,
always have complete answers. Yeah I'll first say that I wish I knew more as us scientists and I in some ways resisted writing a book because you know scientist is by training, I think very cautious about over reaching the data, but in my research lab. We do longitudinal studies of visuals at places like what point or the national Spelling Bee or Chicago public Schools places where we and follow people over time in situations that we believe are challenging and we can measure in some objective way their performance, and we can as agreed at the beginning and their performance at the end and in many Other things like I q, where we want to make sure that were controlling for that A lot of my research is based on these longitudinal studies measure their great look for differences. Highgate people oh great people, people in the middle and then see what happens to measure grip, Duckworth designed a twelve question survey called the grip scale.
I abbreviated it to ten items in the book because I have discovered through personal experience of people, are not very good at dividing by twelve to cover the score, so you know, but the origin, of this scale were interviews that I had done in my very first years of graduate school, when I was trying to understand what The psychological characteristics were of super high achievers, first, I asked them. You know what they were like and I learned very quickly that people who are you know Nobel laureates or the equivalent in their field, aren't very good at describing themselves. I think in part, because we ve all been trained to be Humboldt off deprecating. So I started asked people about the people that they in turn admired most and the question on the scale are all verbatim the way that these other super achievers were described to me? Ok, so, answer. Would you read a couple of these great questions from the questioner and I'll I'll go hand answer them yet? So, let's start with per
the appearance so on a scale from one to five? Were five would be very much like me and one. Would be not at all. Like me, setbacks, don't discouraged me, I don't give up easily. I would say four out of five that is mostly like me. Ok finish whatever I begin well interpretive my brain, I'm going to they not like me at all. I mean I finished. The things the really important, but there are a lot of things that I dont finished. I'm gonna say not so not at all like so one out of me, I M gonna see one and I am a hard worker. I would say four out of five. It's mostly like me new ideas and project? Sometimes distract me from previous ones, o daily, you very much and then my interest change from but then a year
I'd have to salmon the middle on that. Only because some interests mean are very, very constant, but then a lot of new ones and I kill off a lot of old ones. I guess three ETA. Three out of five ok, I have a feeling I am like I'm heading toward like real middle grit, Torreon you're going to do like argument, Morgan on what I have been obsessed with a certain I'd, your project for a short time, but later lost interest. It's interesting. They want. Argue with everyone in your questions I want to argue like will the fact that I've been obsessed with certain idear project means that you know I have some passion, so doesn't that get me up on the great scale so, but I do lose interest, I would say that's mostly like me, I yet obsessions. I follow him for a while, then I kick him at a ban. Ok, one was for eight, nine, nine plus three. Twelve thirteen fourteen divided I want to three sixty six
yeah yeah I saw and regretting you know not so greedy right to point something going. I really needed to in a three turn it over and I'll give you your percentage yet ten percent, I think you know you're roughly com out of ten percent of a sample of american adults. There's parts I could say about that of making comparisons and error. But you know it I absolutely agree that sometimes you take these scales and you just want to shout back to them, because you need a wanna circled. The answer you want to explain why the question itself is flawed. I'd love to hear what you reactions are necessarily flawed, but that, as with any Sir in life. It's hard to reduce it to HU, a number or a letter because their different components of it, in other words, want to give an essay ants her rather than a multiple choice, answer which I know is not the way that surveys can work if you from your and you want to use them, but I guess it does get me to the gist of the question which, as you know, it's a self reported pile of data. So how good? Is it
yeah. I think I'm quoted than your time saying all measures suck and they all suck in their own way. This is true the times article was about how some California schools are using socio emotional measures to assess students performance. Now you might think that Angela Duckworth standard bearer for grit- would be leading this period to but you'd be wrong. I do not think we should be doing this, she told the times it's a bad idea, just in case anyone. Mr point Shiro an opinion piece of the time. A few weeks later called dont greed schools on grit. She argued that the measurement of grit in other character traits may never be good enough for such an important assessment, She resigned from the board of a non profit that was working with the California schools. All this, let me Ask her what seems an obvious question. So how can you claim that grit is so important?
also claiming that we're not very good yet at measuring grit. Well, first of all Do you that a social scientist wants to measure from poverty to self control too? I Q. I well somebody can read. There are no perfect measures, so let's take a questionnaire, they're, all fake, there are new unshakeable questionnaires. There simply aren't any end. There who are subject to something called reference bias. So, for example, you gave yourself one out of five, the lowest possible score on finishing whatever you begin now. I think you made a good point about you. Don't finish everything you finish it. If you care about really think about that. I wonder whether, if you just compared yourself to humanity and asked you know hard to humanity. Are you really in the bottom of the group in terms of finishing things? I doubt that my guess is that are your comparing yourself to a different standard than other people might be comparing themselves a very high standard. That's probably in part why you do finnish things so that right,
Prince bias is another problem of self report questionnaires. I don't think there. Any of the measures that are currently available are appropriate for a high stakes. Mobility policy like in at school is doing a good job. Educating their kids, that's to say that we can measure anything at all and we should just throw our hands and go home. It just means that when we measure things we should know in what ways are measurements are imperfect and we should know- that any data that we get from these measures is gonna carry signal, but also noise. Ok, let me play devils advocate for just a minute. What? If, what? If you just wrong about grit that it's not as as you argue suffering since I understand, is a new study by researchers at Kings College London, suggesting that grit quote adds little to the prediction of school achievement which runs contrary to some. Your conclusions,
They argue that the samples at your views, spelling bee finalists and teachers are to selective and therefore quote, led to stronger associations between grit and achievement later in life than might be the case in a wider sample. So tell me you're not wrong, or maybe you are wrong, an extraordinarily gritty in your ability to admit I It's always important to remind yourself that you could be wrong right. I know this that you're talking about, in particular in that study, its looking at sulphur grit scores as they correlate with your standardized achievement, test scores when you're sixteen years old and yes greatest predictive, but not as predictive as something like a broad scale of and she anxiousness a broad scale of country justness, meaning the big five personality traits psychologist talk about extra version, agreeableness, conscientiousness, openness to parents and neurotic system, the kings college lunch
study, looked at a sample of forty five hundred sixteen year old twins in Britain, so couple actions, one is that no don't expect great to predict all success outcomes equally, I dont think that for many sixteen year olds, their standardized reading and math scores are a goal of personal significance to them, and so that's why study that place. Places like West point like if yourselves president, do staying yourselves job. If you ve committed to college, you finish College, all that are at least at some level important to you- and I know that they are, you could say that that's a car, If success outcome, that's not all success outcomes because achieving test scores or another kind of success outcome. But am I wrong. I mean I just It would be hard for me to believe I must confess my bias here. It's gonna be hard. We too believe that in twenty years, research comes out to say that effort doesn't matter that the quality and the quantity of your for it doesn't matter that really the great accomplishments of human. Kind have been made by people who labour for only minutes or weeks and not for decades that actually it's possible
get somewhere in life without being hopeful without learning to pray this without having a sense of meaning and without being interested in it. So you know I could be wrong if it's just really hard for me to imagine at that fundamental level that I am so for parents or would be parents out there what are some ideas for instilling grit- or maybe the better question would be what some ideas for, not leaving the atmospheric accomplish grit on their own, because, Did you write about how overbearing parents, and teachers erode intrinsic motivation, and if motivation is the first step, obviously you dont want to kill that before it can flourish yeah, I mean I'm apparent to a twelve year old in a fourteen year old. So after I leave them I should have come home and there's the study of grit all over again, but just with my own kids and what to do with them yet so. First,
Do try to remember that, though, the the perseverance peace that the hard work that kind of get up again. View fallen down, that's very poor, but if I sort of skip that chapter on then feeling It's interesting to them and eventually that its also purposeful to them that it's important to them and important because it in something to other people. If I skip that then really I've, may be done more harm than good by trying to get them to now worked really hard at it. So I do too Keep that in mind. I also, gets naive to. But I used to believe that I'm such a hard working person that my kids a just war, watch me and that they all sat down at the piano bench. Unlike start our modern her scales as my Yahoo scurried idea, I wish that it we're so, but I think that even kids, who have the potential to very gritty. They really do need parents to say today no! You actually do have to go to track practice today, even though it's raining but you know what that practice was you. I didn't. You know, and I know that that was not serious practice right. Let's give it another shot, I'm curious if the party
hers, endorse spouses and or coworkers whatever of people who have a lot of grit are also better off. It is grit, a tide that lifts all boats or does it kind of swamp everybody around it? I do not have data on that. We have not yet asked about the happiness of the people who are living with these very gritty people. What do have data on is the happiness of those gritty people themselves and we find a just straight line the more grit you have the happier you say that you are the less anxiety you have less depression, less sadness, so from a personal perspective, grit seems to be terrific, because your having a crazy yeah, exactly the right. You know they worked. Don't know we really dont whether that comes at the cost of your loved ones. I mean I've asked my own family. I mean those only people that I can ask this question. You know,
Bother you. What do you say is my great driving you crazy yeah, exactly the might you know my work too hard is like. Is your life worse off and I ain't you think, there's a cost right. I mean talk about unreliable self, reported data that what would you expect me to say? Yes, we hate how hardly. Why is right, we hate you, but I will say this too to be a really gritty person at the very extreme. Take somebody like an ice Newton right, who was singularly obsessed and that there was nothing in his life really other than his work. You know It's been a lot of time. Thinking about the cards. Whence it to other people in his life, but I think for a lot of people, who are listening there. No, close to that level of grid, they might be closer to the door. Gabriela, if you ask your question like a second, be bad. People to wander while like well. What if I did something with some more ashen. What? If I found something to be of deeper interest to me, something that I'd be willing to be interested in not just further?
your butt really actually for a few years, and I don't actually start working hard at this and try to get better and when bad things happen. I'm going to try to get back up again. If you ask a question like, is that going to be bad for the people around me? I'll tell you one thing: the people who you love, love you back and they probably want you to be fulfilled individual and by that metric. That should be a tide that raises the boats that is Angela, Duckworth Impressive, interesting greedy by the way, remember how it dad always used to say you're, no genius well in twenty thirteen Duckworth one. A mockery they Foundation Fellowship also known as the genius grant to San coming up next week on freedom, trivial self improvement month.
Rules on with how to win, games and beat people, especially the people in your own family, he jumped on Sofa pointed at me and we reached points and each bout him safe, and he says I win, you lose, I wouldn't you lose that will never happened to you again promise next time and for radio, for economics, radio is produced by W and my c studios and W productions. This episode was produced by Christopher Worth. Our staff also includes ervic Gunjay Jake, how it merit Jacob Gregg results, Kashmir highly, which Alison Hockenberry and Caroline English, a big thanks to the monk all the family of Queens New York for having us into their home on a school night. No less pleased subscribe to this progress
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Transcript generated on 2020-04-03.