I’ve yammered endlessly about my approach to parenting.
I spare the child (most of) the lectures, choose to lead by silent example and hope it works.
Which bring, again, to our friend in the wheelchair and the vast amount of grit he possessed.
Each time we pass the Oakland outdoor exercise area I remark to the child:
Remember that guy? Damn that was impressive, huh? He must have worked *hard* to do that!
And, each time I say the above, she seems to recall the whole visual a little less powerfully.
her GRIT face!
So Ive tried to think about how I could lead by example.
I’ve wracked my brain for ways *I* have displayed GRIT that she & I could talk about.
Less than the fact I couldn’t come up with too many—the stories feel long-winded & rambling and I fear I’d lose my audience in the process.
Yet just as important as teaching her she already has not just roots but wings I feel strongly teaching her about GRIT will help her not only in her work-life but in relationships.
Perseverance and passion for long-term goals.
Keeping this together demands GRIT.
- Ive tried asking if she knows what GRIT means and seeing if she can define it back to me.
(“A strong, hard worker?”)
- I’ve tried making it an acronym so it’s broken down into words she knows.
(Guts, resolve, instinct, toughness.)
- I’ve taken personality tests to determine if I even *have* the GRIT.
(According to this I’m GRITTY, but that hasn’t helped define/reflect it to her.)
None of those approaches have worked—so I’ve stepped back and tried to figure out *how* I could teach (on an 8 year old level) the importance and power of possessing grit.
Is GRIT taught through:
Letting her fall and fail? To the child’s delight (not) I love the phrase: You win some, you learn some! Each of my “failings” or times I’ve quit have helped me get to where I am today. As a society we’re afraid to fail. We are scared to let our children fail. Yes, failures can be embarrassing in the moment, but it’s by failing we either learn & change our approach or push through. Which brings me to…
Letting her get stuck and teaching tenacity? GRIT, to this trash-mouth mama, is leaning anything worth getting or having is f*cking hard. It’s also in the realization that this f*cking hardnessment (<—-technical term) is not necessarily a bad thing! It lends *value* to what we’ve achieved. Which transitions to…
Letting her know hard work is the most important thing? “I noticed how hard you worked.” not “You did really well! Great job.” In our house it is less important how well you do than how hard you try. I don’t care if she’s the worst softball player on the team or the last in the class in math if she got there through working her a** off and GRIT.
That’s pretty much where this GRIT-Mama is stuck right now.
Realizing the importance of the trait and trying valiantly to convey/teach it in a way which resonates.
- How would you teach GRIT to someone who’d never heard the word?
- According to the quiz linked above are you GRITty?