how to cultivate it grit

Karen told she would keeping going until she heard the word “yes” and I was excited. See, 50% of life is just showing up.  But, so many people ask how do you actually muster the motivation to show that 50% of life, when all you see if the lows, the setbacks and the “no”s?

What Karen does not realize is she has “grit” already.  Grit sounds like a face scrub right?  In actuality it is how you act and react to life.  I hear this often…  “they have grit!”, but what does that really mean.

“The FedEx Forum, was quickly anointed “The Grindhouse” and Tony Allen became “The Grindfather”.  Memphians always have and always will be drawn to the underdog.  The guy who is not the flashiest or smoothest. A city in a state that would not mind if it wasn’t (actually a part of Tennessee).  [Memphis is often] Thought of as dirty and crime ridden.  Tony and Zach, and the Grizzlies were simply a reflection of the city.  It allowed the country a glimpse into the heart of the culture of Memphis.  The culture that gave birth to the Blues and Rock and Roll.  A culture that values hard work and a never say die attitude even if the odds are against you.  Because they generally are.  Still you go out there and just refuse to quit, until your opponent does.  That’s grit and grind.  That’s the culture of Memphis.” [quoted from >>here<<]

The Memphis NBA team, the Grizzlies, have come to be known, and live by, the slogan “Grit and Grind”.  In fact, the city and the people of Memphis now use this term often and epitomize the true meaning of the term.  Former (and retired) NBA Grizzlies player, Tony Allen, used the “Grit Grind” slogan first in a press conference following the Feb. 8, 2011 game.  The slogan gave, not only the Grizzlies, but the city as a whole, something to latch on to and and to identify with going forward.  The city and all the sports team often refer to this slogan every chance they get.

In job search, grit and grind are so very needed. The exhausting mental challenges that one faces every week and the ups and downs of job search can wear a person down and strongly affect mindset and motivation. The good news is that “grit” can be learned and developed.

In the book, “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance”, author Angela Duckworth discusses four ways to develop “grit”.

Four ways to develop “Grit”

1. Practice

Practice with intention focuses your actions of what you need to do to grow.  Practice implies trying and learning, over and over if needed.  Michael Jordan did not become the best basketball 

2. Purpose

Practice is useless if what you’re practicing is something you don’t feel purposeful about or can be highly interested in. Purpose is anything you can develop an interest in over long term.  Interest is a huge component of purpose.

We often use “purpose” and in a variety of ways.  What’s important isn’t that you find some natural calling, but instead find something you can readily dive deeper into the more you learn.  In essence, finding passion in a subject or activity.

3. Hope

There is no success without failure and for anyone that believes that is not true misses out on life.   Failure is often inevitable, but if we can learn to embrace failure as an opportunity to learn, improve, and then get back up again, we’re more likely to succeed in future attempts.  Hope 

To develop more grit you must start with hope, and learn that it’s alright to fail as long as you don’t give up or quit.  Hope should never be thought of as a weakness, instead viewed as a mindset that pushes you off the starting block and propels you at full force ahead.   To not start with hope, is to limit your potential before you ever get started.   It is better to hope, that to never live fully.

4. Time

The last part of the grit formula is simply time. Time to devote yourself to practice, purpose, and developing from failure.  Time to get better. Time to figure out what works and time to succeed.  Nothing happens overnight.  No one excels immediately.  Time is there to season you.

Put these 4 components in action every day and remind yourself often about each one.   A “grit” mentality is essential to life’s successes and all you have to do is start.


Do you want to learn more about your personal grit and building your goals? Explore my brand new Inner Warrior Tribe online group >>HERE<<.