Grit may be the “secret sauce” for success

Building Resilience: Preparing For Life’s Challenges

In my career as a neurosurgeon, I have helped numerous patients often with similar conditions. It still amazes me how one person’s emotional reaction to a certain disease or condition can be totally opposite to another experiencing the same problem. Of course, there are easy explanations for this. None of us have the same upbringing, physical condition, perception of pain, disease load, education or social supports. Add to this variability in age, sex, race and other differences and how could we possibly believe people would react the same. And yet, observationally, I consistently find patients with similar diagnoses react very differently….


Grit may be the “secret sauce” for success

Having grit — pursuing goals you care about and sticking with them — will boost chances of achievement, the research demonstrates. Regardless of your cognitive gifts, it’s wise not to underestimate the power of passionate persistence.

High achievers with track records of success under pressure tend to share one underestimated trait: grit. That’s the upshot of a November 2019 study on students at the United States’ elite military academy, West Point. In certain contexts, success hinges on “passion and perseverance for long-term goals of personal significance,” the study suggests.

This is #16 on Inverse’s list of 25 striking lessons from 2019 for humans to help maximize our potential. Researchers analyzed over 11,000 West Point cadets over a decade, exploring the cognitive and non-cognitive factors that might influence their success at the academy. While intelligence matters, grit is the secret ingredient for success — at least in this hyper-competitive, physical context…


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