Have you ever had a big goal? Like running a 5K race? Building a go kart? Learning a new instrument? Becoming an actor or actress? Getting a perfect grade in one or more of your classes?
Sometimes, new things like this can feel very hard. They push us and challenge us. We may fail several times. It may feel like a huge struggle. You may feel like giving up. But something in you keeps on going. You keep pushing. You stick with it. This is grit. And grit is good! Very good!
Grit is the ability to strive for long term goals despite difficulty. And it may be one of the most important things that you can develop! Research has shown that the ability to stick with your goals over a long time, even when things get very difficult, is a key ingredient to success and happiness in life.
If you look at people who have accomplished a lot in their life, chances are they have a lot of grit. Great athletes, scientists, moms, dads, soldiers, inventors, social workers, artists, teachers and musicians all have grit. Lots of it.
And kids have it too! For example, have you ever seen the National Spelling Bee? Studies have shown that the children who succeed there have more grit that the average child.
So how do you develop grit? Some of the key ingredients are working on traits such as:
- Dealing with Failure and Rejection
This video explains more about what Grit is and why it matters:
To learn more about grit, it’s importance and how to develop it in yourself, check out the great wisdom in these quotes for kids about grit below. Then see how you can take steps to improve your own grit.
- “Success is a little like wrestling a gorilla. You don’t quit when you’re tired. You quit when the gorilla is tired.” – Robert Strauss
- “F-E-A-R has two meanings: ‘Forget Everything And Run’ or ‘Face Everything And Rise.’ The choice is yours.” – Zig Ziglar
- “Failure will never overtake me if my determination to succeed is strong enough. – Og Mandino
- “A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work.” – Colin Powell
- “Never give in. Never give in. Never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in, except to convictions of honour and good sense.” – Winston Churchill
- “The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack in will.” – Vince Lombardi Jr.
- “I wouldn’t be where I am now if I didn’t fail … a lot. The good, the bad, it’s all part of the success equation.” – Mark Cuban
- “No matter what your current condition, how or where you grew up, or what education or training you feel you lack, you can be successful in your chosen endeavor. It is spirit, fortitude, and hardiness that matter more than where you start.” – Jack Ma
- “We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort.” – Jesse Owens
- “I’ve always found that anything worth achieving will always have obstacles in the way and you’ve got to have that drive and determination to overcome those obstacles on route to whatever it is that you want to accomplish.” – Chuck Norris
- “The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a man’s determination.” – Tommy Lasorda
- “Difficulties break some men, but make others.”
- “Gold medals aren’t really made of gold. They’re made of sweat, determination, and a hard-to-find alloy called guts.” – Dan Gable
- “Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” – Nelson Mandela
- “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill
- Fall seven times, stand up eight.” – Japanese Proverb
- ‘Hardship often prepares an ordinary person for an extraordinary destiny.’ – C.S. Lewis
- Click here to see many InspireMyKids stories and videos about people who demonstrate what key ingredients to grit, like perseverance and determination are all about
- Click here for other great quotes for kids
Topics for Discussion:
- What are your top 3 favorite quotes above? Why?
- Talk about a time when you have shown grit? What was the result? What led you to have grit?
- How about a time when you did not have grit? What was the result? Why did you not have grit?
- Talk about a person you know that displays grit. How do they do this? Is there anything you can learn from them?
- Can you remember a story that you have read or movie you’ve seen where the characters benefited from their grit? Or how about a story where a character did not show grit?
- Think about a big goal that you have. It could be for school, for family, or any other important area of your life. Write it down, using this goal worksheet or create your own worksheet. Keep track of your progress, find someone to support you, stick with your and reference these quotes every time you feel like quitting. See what the results are. Good luck!
- Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for elementary school students.
- Here is a link to a Critical Reading Skills worksheet that you can use for middle school students.