Positive Illusions

956 Words4 Pages
Are we half-awake? According to William James, we are only using a small amount of our available mental resources. He makes the statement that only exceptional individuals put these resources to use. These individuals can be defined as having “grit”, the perseverance and passion for long-term goals. Duckworth and colleagues hypothesized that grit is essential to high achievement. The researchers expected grit to be associated with Big Five Conscientiousness and self-control. Grit overlaps with Big Five conscientiousness but differs due to the emphasis on long-term achievement rather than short-term goals. Someone high in self-control may be able to stick to his or her diet or control his or her temper but remain unable to stick with his or her long-term goals such as an advancement in career that would take years. Galton suggested that self-control would be a shockingly poor predictor of high achievement. He instead said that it was an instinctive craving for intellectual work that drove individuals to high achievement. Since personality traits become relatively stable over time, the researchers also expected older adults to be slightly higher in grit than younger ones. They predicted that IQ would be a poor indicator of grit. In the Terman longitudinal study of mentally gifted children, the individuals who had the most accomplishments scored only five points higher than the ones who had the least accomplishments. Terman and others have speculated that it is not intelligence alone that matters; there must also be a sense of dedication. Howe stated “Perseverance is at least as crucial as intelligence”, and he suggested that the most crucial inherent difference may be one of temperament rather than intellect. Duckworth and colleagu... ... middle of paper ... ... questionnaires. The Grit Scale and the BSCS were administered as well as a Verbal IQ test. The results revealed that grit predicted advancement to higher rounds in competition. This study suggests that success is a result of gritty children worker harder than their less gritty peers. If someone makes it to college, then surely it is safe to assume they have a desire to be there. It is assumed that s/he is an intelligent individual. What if intelligence fails? How can intelligence fail? “Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.” If we replace talent with intelligence, then this quote will answer the question to near perfection. In order to be successful, perseverance and passion must be present. Intelligence will only get one so far if one refuses to work hard. This applies to this class because people who do not work hard will fall short of success.
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