Grit – The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth

A Book Review by Daniel R. Murphy

Title and Author:   Grit – The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth

Synopsis of Content:  

Angela Duckworth, PhD, is a psychologist who has studied what single factor is most important to success. She studied people engaged in high performance activities including business people, spelling bee contestants, Olympic athletes, West Point cadets, students in various educational institutions and many other situations where high performance is required in highly competitive situations. Her research is vigorous.

She learned that two factors are most important to attain success in all these situations. They are passion and perseverance – what she calls grit.

Duckworth found that grit was more important than background, intelligence, talent, looks, past performance, and a number of other factors commonly associated with success. It is not that these other factors are not important. It is that grit is the most important. People with grit who may have less talent or IQ than their competitors come out on top if they have sufficient grit. Likewise people with talent and intelligence often do not do as well if they lack grit.

Grit means a strong and sustained passion or desire to excel. It also requires the willingness to work very hard over a long period of time, not weeks or months, but years, to attain a goal. This combination of passion and perseverance creates the greatest likelihood for success.

What I found useful about this book:

The author’s research and case studies clearly illustrate how grit is the primary factor in success for most people in most situations. It provides a blue print for what it takes to succeed with or without extraordinary talent.

Readability/Writing Quality:  

The book is exceptionally well written and easy to read.

Notes on Author:   

Angela Duckworth, PhD, is a 2013 MacArthur Fellow and professor of psychology at the Univ. of Pennsylvania. She has a BA in neurobiology from Harvard, a MSc in neuroscience at Oxford and PhD in psychology from the Univ. of Pennsylvania. She was also an award winning teacher.

Other Books by This Author:


Related Website:

Three Great Ideas You Can Use:  

  1. The single greatest factor in success at any endeavor is grit – the sustained passion to achieve combined with hard work over long periods of time.
  2. Passion can be generated. People can find what they truly want to achieve and dedicate themselves to the pursuit of that success.
  3. Sustained hard work over long periods of time can overcome limitations and help achieve any goal if one is willing to keep at it long enough and with sufficient dedication.

Publication Information:  

Title and Author: Grit – The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth
Copyright holder: ©2016 by Angela Duckworth
Publisher: Scribner, Simon & Schuster, Inc.

The September 2016 Book of the Month

Buy the book here.

Wishing you well,

Daniel R. Murphy
Educating people for building wealth, adapting to a changing future and personal development.