The grit factor

The Grit Factor

I’m what I like to call a ‘one trick pony’ when it comes to baking.  I can only bake one thing…flourless banana muffins.  (I call it a one trick, because I’ll vary ingredients and have chocolate chip or blueberry muffins.)  You can image my dismay when my muffins (the one thing I could bake from scratch) started coming out flat.  And I mean flat, like a thick pancake.  These squatty muffins didn’t taste good either.

I went through my cookbook Pinterest page, reviewing the ingredient list.  Hmmm…one little ingredient missed the ride into my mixing bowl.  A teaspoon of baking soda.  A fraction-of-an-ounce-ingredient differentiated my muffins being edible or hard-as-a-rock-squatty-somethings.

For this reason, I call baking soda the magic ingredient.

One small ingredient influences the other bigger ingredients.

When it comes to the success of life, I think grit is the magic ingredient.

Sure, you can have talent, money, great looks, opportunities, the right family.  But, if you don’t have grit…Your life will come out like my muffins…a sad, pale representation of what it could have been.

According to Dr. Angela Ducksworth aka the ‘Grit guru’, “the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence: grit.”

So, what exactly is grit?

She defines grit as passion and perseverance for very long-term goals.

Grit is continuing to press forward even when things aren’t working about, especially when things aren’t going as planned.

Grit is shaking the dirt off your knees when you fall down and persistently keep getting back up.

The Grit Factor

Good news, grit isn’t determined by talent, personality, or birth order.  You choose grit.  This is a choice you make in the tough moments.  Moments after defeat, rejection, or maybe when there’s nothing going on. You’re in the silence… no one is there cheering you on.  Are you going to give up? Or, are you going to tenaciously grab hold of your dreams and keep going?

What goals are you stuck in or have stopped pursuing?

Is it because you don’t feel smart enough, good enough, or something along those lines?

You don’t have to be the smartest in the room, but you do have to show up and keep showing up.

Paul says it like this, “because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and hope.”

Suffering for me is working hard when I don’t get the results that I want. It’s in these moments, that I’m most likely to throw in the towel and quit.  Suffering is actually fertile ground for grit to grow.

Curious about your grit level?  Check out this scale to see how much grit you have.

Blessings to you,



  • Casie

    Grit is something we work hard at helping kids understand. I love the statement we CHOOSE grit!! Will find a way to incorporate the grit test in class as well! Thanks!

    November 28, 2016 at 12:01 pm
    • melissaClark
      Melissa Clark

      Awesome, thanks Casie!

      November 28, 2016 at 4:49 pm
  • Michelle moore

    I really liked this post! Great reminder to keep going and keep showing up!

    November 29, 2016 at 12:57 am

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