“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” ~Zig Ziglar
Our current world demands speed. We want results and we want them NOW! And there is no hint of it slowing down anytime soon. Efficiency and quantum leaps are incredible experiences. On the contrary, instant gratification that stems from impatience or complacency is also often times short-lived. You may want instant results but who wants the experience of fleeting success? No one.
The reality is that the most rewarding type of results or successes do not happen overnight. It’s the journey that allows for true satisfaction and stability. It’s been said before that it’s actually who we become inside the process that matters most.
For example, the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards says nearly a third of lottery winners declare bankruptcy—and many frequently become estranged from family and friends, incur a greater incidence of depression, drug and alcohol abuse, divorce, and suicide than the average American. Meaning, their instant gratification left them worse off than before their windfall. So instant wealth, without the journey, is not only often short lived but sometimes even detrimental.
How then do we create lifelong, lasting success? What type of person creates real, lasting success and why? If you ask the common person they might say that it is talented or intelligent people that are the ones destined for lasting success. Talent and intelligence do help, however, research is now showing there is something else that is a stronger predictor of true success.
Researcher, Angela Ducksworth has found that success requires more than talent (defined as the ability to learn quickly and easily) or even IQ. True success is, however, more highly correlated with GRIT, which she defines as passion and perseverance for long-term goals, stamina and a commitment to sticking with your future day in and day out.
Duckworth explains that cultivating grit entails 4 main points:
Developing an authentic fascination; knowing what question in life fascinates YOU most
A genuine strive to improve each day
Connecting to your defined, unique, greater purpose
Adopting a growth mindset
Growth mindset is defined as having a belief that your ability to learn is not fixed and has been studied in depth by author Carol Dweck. Duckworth found that when children understand the fact that our brains are not fixed but instead change and respond to challenge (or adopt a growth mindset), they are more likely to persevere when they fail because they don’t believe failure is a permanent condition.
In the words of Ducksworth, “You must be able to take your best ideas or intuition and test them, measure if you’ve been successful, be willing to fail or be wrong and start over again with lessons learned”
So grit or the ability to show up over and over (or in other words “put in the hours”) is a start….. but does willingness and dedication to showing up for something important to you insure real, lasting success?
Expert researcher, Anders Ericsson’s work suggests that you cannot simply put in the hours (contrary to the popular 10,000 hour expert rule). The real key is to make sure you don’t just show up but show up WITH intention in what he calls purposeful practice and deliberate practice.
Ericsson’s 4 rules of purposeful practice are:
Have very specific goals
Use intense focus
Gather immediate feedback
Cycle through frequent perceived limits that create discomfort and frustration
He describes combining purposeful practice with expert coaching, creating deliberate practice and suggests that is the formula for successful improvement.
Combining grit with deliberate practice allows you to cultivate the satisfaction that comes along with long-term success and continual improvement. This is what is required to meet and exceed worthy goals.
Are you gritty? Do you use deliberate practice to create long term success? Do you have specific goals you are intensely focused on? Do you know whether you have actually reached those goals? Are you welcoming the inevitable cycles of discomfort and frustration that come with improvement?
TAKE ACTION NOW: Let’s talk about how you can create clear answers to the questions above and incorporate grit and deliberate practice inside all you do! Take it a step further and schedule a free Deliberate Practice Session this week only!