Tuesday, January 14, 2014

A Gritty Hiatus

"I can never enjoy Sundays because, in the back of my mind, I always know I've got to go back to school the next day. It's like trying to enjoy your last meal before execution."

The Spring semester has finally reared its ugly head. Due to my tendency to be easily distracted from my schoolwork, my blog posts will likely become more sporadic than they already are over the next few months. As all three readers of my blog probably know, I'm working on my MBA in Strategic Management at UNT. Some reports make me wonder why I'm pursuing it in the first place, while others give me hope. If I'm lucky, my modest work experience combined with my newly-minted MBA will translate into the 20% return that research has found. As for the actual education, I've already written about the state of business education and my views on it (the humanities aren't much better). Given that 42% of college students never read another book after they graduate, it makes me wonder if Will Hunting was right. 

Despite my slight pessimism, I'm hoping that the following weeks will be an exercise in willpower and focus and thus play a small role in the development of grit: the "perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Grit entails working strenuously toward challenges, maintaining effort and interest over years despite failure, adversity, and plateaus in progress. The gritty individual approaches achievement as a marathon; his or her advantage is stamina. Whereas disappointment or boredom signals to others that it is time to change trajectory and cut losses, the gritty individual stays the course."[1] Unfortunately, I am one to get bored (and not in the "Einstein-got-bad-grades" kind of way).

What is fascinating is that grit trumps IQ and other various traits when it comes to success. Therefore, I think we could all use a little more of it.

So, I'm going to make a feeble attempt to develop this trait (perhaps as a likely ill-fated New Year's resolution) and focus my energies (mostly) on school. Wish me luck.

1. Michael D. Matthews, Angela Duckworth, "Grit: Perseverance and Passion for Long-Term Goals," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 92:6 (2007): 1087-1088.

1 comment:

  1. "Good luck..." say that like the creepy guy on "Taken." And remember- YOU are my FAVORITE nerd!!