Monday, August 24, 2015


Old TED talk, but it is a continuation of my last post in a way...That we should not and must not confuse between grit and rote learning. Putting in the hours, learning something till they get it right is not rote learning - it is perhaps grit. Perhaps we romanticise the fact that 'I cannot learn by rote' or is it our own euphemism for, 'I cannot work hard'. Questions, questions...

But yes, grit is what makes people successful...sounds simple enough, but as she asks, how do we build it in kids? Or ourselves?

Tailpiece: For me, this has shown up in two separate places. For a year I used to turn up at a class - the only thing in my favor was the fact that I was regular. I was not the strongest or the most skillful nor the fastest. But I was regular. And I asked my coach, well, what have I learnt? And what he said will remain in my mind till the end - he said, "Well, you have turned up every single day wanting to learn. That one thing will keep you ahead of those who did not".

And in another instance, we were at rehearsals for a play. Our group - three of us, turned up, day after day, come rain, wind or run, to rehearse. It helped that all of us believed that we were talentless, but we wanted to do well. And so we did. Rehearsed, played, tried, experimented, rounded the rough edges and worked on it till beyond perfection. And in the end, we were rewarded and how. What we lacked in acting 'talent' we made up with sheer practice. And not once, did we flub a dialogue. And on the other side where supposedly talented people who just did not put in the hard work - and it showed in their work.

Yes, grit works.

I don't know what else will work, ever. 

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