Go Grit! Part 2 of 2

Today we revisit last week’s post on GRIT. Paul Tough  wrote a NY Times Magazine Article that caused quite a controversy regarding the “secret to success.” He argues that the experience of failure, as opposed to the rigor of academics, leads to character building and ultimately to success. 

In this blog post from Aha Parenting's Dr. Laura Markham, she writes about the counter argument to Tough's stance on failure as the key to success. Dr. Markham holds that emotional intelligence is what helps kids succeed, and that self-regulation is key to helping children build this important skill. 

Grit is the “perseverance and passion for long term goals.” What if, rather than one or the other, experiencing failure AND cultivating emotional intelligence were both key factors in developing grit? 

As we mentioned last week, step one in having grit is to ALLOW SETBACKS TO HAPPEN. Notice that we didn’t use the word FAILURE. Setbacks are the challenges that everyone faces in life. The way teens (and parents) approach these setbacks contribute to our overall outlook on life, including whether we fight them, ignore them or accept and learn from them.

Here’s another thing to consider. Is a failure really a failure if you learn something valuable from it? 

What do you think? Chime in! How do you define grit? What do you think about how emotional intelligence and experience of failure contribute to building character?

For more on these topics, check out some of our older GirlTips that speak about emotion regulation, resilience and self-compassion.