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A Book Review of “Grit” by Angela Duckworth

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Rose is an enthusiastic writer and reader who publishes articles every Thursday. She enjoys all book genres, especially drama and fantasy.

What’s the Big Deal?

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance was an instant bestseller, immensely popular among educators, leaders, scientists, and the general public. Not much information was known on the trait we call “grit” before this book—but now, the average Joe can learn what grit is and how to get it, and develop a thorough understanding of the new idea that talent may not be the determining factor of success after all—in fact, it just might be the mix of determination and passion we call grit. The book, written by renowned psychologist Angela Duckworth, was described as a “pop-psych smash” by The New Yorker, a statement I wholly agree with—and after reading it, it’s likely that you’ll think so, too.

“Grit” by Angela Duckworth

“Grit” by Angela Duckworth

Book Summary

Grit is split up into three parts. The first part, What Grit is and Why it Matters, consists of five helpful, informative introductory chapters involving—yes—what grit is, why it’s more valuable than talent, how effort counts in being successful, how you can grow grit, and how to discover how gritty you are.

The second part, Growing Grit From the Inside Out, is split into four chapters: Interest, Practice, Purpose, and Hope. Why? Because these four factors, as Duckworth tells us, are imperative in the building of grit; it isn’t just being determined, or following through with your commitments. It takes effort, it takes time, and it takes work, but you’ll be all the better for it if you’re willing to make the change.

Part Three is called Growing Grit From the Outside In, and it involves how to get your family on board with building grit, as well as how to surround yourself with gritty influences. It helps teach “Parenting For Grit,” and how to build a system of determination in your home—but, if you aren’t careful, this life-changing system might just seep into every aspect of your life, leaving you more hopeful, successful, and happy than you ever thought possible. And it’s all thanks to a four-letter word.

Quick Facts

  • Author: Angela Duckworth
  • Pages: 352
  • Genre: Psychology, applicable psychology, self-help
  • Ratings: 4.1/5 Goodreads, 4.6/5 Amazon Customer Reviews
  • Release date: May 3, 2016
  • Publisher: Scribner

To Read or Not to Read?

I recommend this book if:

  • You have an urge to improve your life, your work, your sense of purpose, or other aspects of being human
  • You wish you could stick to things better and follow through with what you say you’ll do
  • You’re interested in what makes famous people successful
  • Science and psychology are topics you consider to be enjoyable
  • You’re ready to make that change in your life you were previously afraid of making

I won’t just have a job; I’ll have a calling. I’ll challenge myself every day. When I get knocked down, I’ll get back up. I may not be the smartest person in the room, but I’ll strive to be the grittiest.

— Angela Duckworth, “Grit”

Reviews

“Make no doubt: Grit is great. It's a lucid, informative, and entertaining review of the research Angela has assiduously conducted over the past decade or so. The book also includes suggestions on how to develop grit, and how we can help support grit in others. There are few people who wouldn't learn something from this book.” —Scientific American

“...Angela Duckworth has recently separated herself from the pack with her book Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance (2016), which has been hailed by coaches, journalists, and especially educators as a breakthrough work. With an impressive background as a global management consultant, inner-city teacher, and now research psychologist, Duckworth—a 2013 MacArthur Fellow and professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania—seems to have discovered the key ingredient to success in any endeavor.” —TableTalk Magazine

Angela Duckworth’s Ted Talk:

The Takeaway

No matter where you are in your life, Angela Duckworth’s Grit will help you go farther. The book brought out perspectives on grit and purpose that I’d never considered before, and taught me the ropes of how to stay interested in a career, how to practice and work efficiently, how to direct your actions toward a higher goal, and how to stick to whatever that higher goal is. I learned what it means to have passion and joy in a subject—something that’s usually quite difficult to teach, except when explained by Duckworth. Thanks to her, it’s never been easier to change one’s life; if you’d like to take the first steps in doing so, you can find the book here.

Comments

Binoy from Delhi on September 10, 2020:

Nice review, Thanks

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on September 10, 2020:

Good review of the book. Seems to be of inspirational nature. Would go through. Thanks for sharing.

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