Duckworth, A. L., Peterson, C., Matthews, M.D. & Kelly, D.R. (2007). Grit: Perseverance and Passion for Long-Term Goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol 92(6): 1087-1101.
Here’s why it’s relevant:
grit, more than self-control or conscientiousness, may set apart the exceptional individuals who [psychologist William] James thought made maximal use of their abilities.
it’s not just about “commitment to a subjectively important activity” (the passion scale by Vallerand et al, 2003 is what the authors of this study reference for this) but about perseverance of effort. like tenacity. like conscientiousness and self-control, and focusses on effort & interest over time. And it’s separate from IQ.
It’s got a good internal validity of [alpha]=0.78.
The word “diligence” leaps out at me.
A few interesting results:
more educated adults were higher in grit than were less educated adults of equal age
grit grows with age
a strong desire for novelty and a low threshold for frustration may be adaptive earlier in life: Moving on from dead-end pursuits is essential to the discovery of more promising paths