In the third grade, my Dad pretty much created and predicted my future. It was during a conversation about career day.
Me: “I have to decide by tomorrow what I want to be when I grow up.” (isn’t it silly that we did/do that to young children?)
Dad: “Well, whatever you decide, you’ll have to go to college…and your only shot at college is if you get a softball scholarship.”
That was it. Not academic or basketball. It was softball. Then for good measure, he added this:
“And that’s not gonna be easy because you aren’t the most talented player I’ve ever seen.”
That was a lot for a young person to take on, and it could have been devastating had it not been for the very next line. The line that sealed my fate and gave me unbelievable dividends still to this day…
“…but Tracy, you can do it because you can outwork anyone.”
That was it. It was not going to be predetermined by anything. It would be decided by me and my work ethic. By me owning the outcomes and controlling the one thing I could always control: my willingness to work hard.
To me…having grit means you are willing to do whatever it takes to get the job done. I love how Wally Schmader calls it “choosing mission over mood.”
One of my favorite quotes is:
“Hustle beats talent when talent doesn’t hustle.”
Where does your grit come from? What gets you out of bed even on tough days? What mantra do you use when you need a dose of motivation?
If you don’t have one, I invite you to share mine. “You can outwork anyone.”