How to Develop Grit and Why It’s More Important than Talent

How to Develop Grit and Why It’s More Important than Talent

How to Develop Grit and Why It’s More Important than Talent

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Grit is passion and perseverance tied to achieving meaningful goals. It is the ability to persist against all odds about something you are passionate about and to persevere when you face obstacles.

“Grit is not about intense emotions or infatuation; it is the kind of passion tied to achieving purposeful goals.”

Grit gives you the willingness to face challenges, in spite of fear. Every person has this essential personality trait by birth, but due to certain personal, domestic, and societal reasons, this trait fades away in some people. Grit is important to be successful in all aspects of life, while a lack of grit can become a hindering force to progress.

Grit is also synonyms with leading a prosperous life. The good news is that grit can be developed and increased. Here are two ways to develop more grit.

Know the Importance of Grit

First of all, it is essential to know what you want out of life and how grit will play an important role to achieve your goals. Second, it’s helpful to identify the areas where you feel unsatisfied in. your life and come to grip with how your fears may not be allowing you to dream big.

“A cornerstone to activating more grit in your life, is to dare to dream big.”

Thirdly, you should set the goals for your career, relationships, and life. Write it down and set a time frame. When you have a clear idea of what you actually want, you can develop a plan to get there.

Sometimes we can’t build up our grit for action because we have failed to calculate the cost of inaction. Knowing the price that we have to pay for letting certain fears control our life leads to re-creating it to meet your needs, and knowing where, when, and how to apply grit.

Identify Fears

Fears are not bad. They protect you against real threats, like walking too close to the edge of a cliff — the fear of falling to your death is a healthy fear.

The kind of fears worth identifying are those that at times keep you stuck. Fears of being rejected, humiliated, or found out as inadequate become a halt in the ways of expressing yourself. It’s ego-based fears that we want to develop grit against.

Acknowledging your fears is an act of grit in itself and is important to get rid of them. When you know your enemy, you can develop a plan to fight and win against it. Our enemy in life are fears, and our job is to figure out the reason for them. Sometimes, a bad experience from the past can cause a certain fear to play out over and over in our mind, and can falters our ability to have courage, and apply grit for an entire life.

To beat the fears, after you’ve acknowledged them, is to then recognize your strengths.

“Recognition of your strengths is equally important to knowing your fears. Everyone has some edge over both in some way.”

Recognizing your strengths would induce faith in yourself and become a positive approach that you can count on in all aspects of life.

Keeping in mind the fears, their causes and your strengths, you can then develop a concrete plan towards achieving your goals and rely on your grit to see you through.

It is impossible to get over all your fears at once, but when you know the clear direction you wish to take, you can develop a feasible plan focused on climbing the mountain, one step at a time. Start with daily objectives, stretch them to weekly, and then monthly, and longer over time. Each step you take build up your ability to develop more grit.

Certain attitudes, behaviors and thinking patterns suppress our grit. It is important to be positive in yourself. Focus on the positives and ignore the negative vibes coming from the people who are not clapping for your success.

“Never compare yourself with others, as you are unique, and have your own strengths.”

Believe in these strengths to expand your grit and take risks. Your grit would take you to the horizons of success. In case of failures along the way, embrace them. Stay calm, think about the reasons, ratify them, and keep moving.

Talent Not Required

Many people believe that in order to be successful you have to have talent and intelligence. While those attributes are helpful, grit is the ultimate equalizer because it is a force to help you achieve success, independent of how smart or talented you are.

To truly manifest the life you want, you need perseverance. Without grit, talent may end up being un-manifested potential. It is only with consistent and persistent application of effort (grit) that intelligence and talent can become skills that will lead you to success.

It’s also very helpful to have heroes in your life. When it comes to heroes you can cast the character you wish to become in the future and begin to live as if you are that hero. You can read more about how to become your own hero in by clicking here.

Grit doesn’t mean doing things alone. Ask for help and ask often. Asking for help shows a level of self-awareness to our limitations, and a commitment to our growth. Rather than thinking of asking for help as a sign of weakness, see it for what it is — a commitment to growing.

Search out those that have accomplished what you are attempting to do or have tackled the issue you need help with. To get to the next level of your aspirations, you’ll need to ask help from those who have already reach that level. If you want to learn how to ask for help and get it, you can check out my previous blog by clicking here.

To recap how to develop more grit, it is crucial to know yourself. Admitting your fears and acknowledging the strengths would help you develop an action plan and positive attitudes towards a more grit filled personality. Having someone to look up to as a hero can help you develop more grit, and finally asking for help from those who have already displayed grit is a sure way to help you be a successful person in every aspect of your life.

Business Innovation Brief

How to Ask for Help and Get It

How to Ask for Help and Get It

How to Ask for Help and Get It

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Asking for help is an important aspect of personal growth. Everyone faces challenges at some point in their life. One of the purposes for developing human connections, and relationships is to help and support each other through our collective life journey.

To strive for total independence is to strive for isolation. Too often we tout autonomy as this extraordinary thing to strive for, but it’s not reasonable or even attractive to achieve it; that’s not how we are wired as human beings.

As people we are wired to be in relationship with other individuals. Going against this is like being opposed to nature. The goal is to develop solid inter-depended relationships.

“Requesting help exhibits vulnerability, maturity, trust and fosters intimacy.”

Asking for help shows a level of self-awareness to our limitations, and a commitment to our growth. Rather than thinking of asking for help as a sign of weakness, see it for what it is – a commitment to growing. Yet, asking for help is also the ultimate form of giving. Helping someone is a privilege, and an opportunity to experience sharing, and being useful; it is a source of joy for the giver.

“When we ask someone for help, we are giving someone the ultimate gift. The gift of allowing them to experience the bliss of being useful and sharing their wisdom and knowledge.”

What Holds People Back

The reason why many people hold back from asking for help is fear. They think they will be dismissed or told “no”.

Being told “no” doesn’t need to be dreadful. We don’t need to create a negative story in our mind about it and make it about us.

It might be that the individual we decided to ask for help, didn’t have the resources to help us. It’s ideal to acknowledge the “no” as simply the outcome to our solicitation, not a nullification of ourselves. A “no” lets us know not to burn through any more time and energy asking this specific individual, and aides us closer to somebody who will say “yes.”

Some compare being open to help, as being powerless, yet requesting help takes mindfulness and boldness. It’s essential to know where our qualities lie and where they don’t. 

“When someone denies helping you, it’s a poor reflection on them, not on you for being vulnerable and mature enough to ask.”

Be Sure, Be Precise

One of the primary traps that individuals fall into when they approach the Universe for something is that they are not 100% sure what they need and why.

They make statements like ‘I need to be rich’ or ‘I need to discover love’, yet until you iron out those thoughts, they are not getting down to business as powerful demands.

Give your emotions a chance to direct you in choosing what it is you need. I can request to win the lottery, yet I don’t generally comprehend without a doubt how that would improve my life. Be specific with why you want something. Know the purpose behind what you are asking for. Maybe you want to win the lottery so you can start a charity to help the homeless learn new skills and give them a second chance at life? You’ll have a better shot asking wealthy people to fund such an initiative. Know why you are asking for help, and who to ask.

“Know the purpose for your need for help and who to ask. Both have to align to receive the support you need.”

Make it a Practice

Most serious issues need a network of individuals to solve them. People must be open to requesting help. There are such a large number of fields, and a lot of information out there for anybody to know everything.

Individuals are ready to offer help whenever requested. You need to vocalize your needs. In the event that you can do that, you’ll see the distinction in your initiative.

People are inclined to need to assist those who’ve tried to help themselves. Let the person you want the help from know what you’ve tried so far. You are more likely to get help if you can show a personal commitment towards the goal you need help with, by sharing the efforts you’ve already made.

It’s no fun for the giver when you help someone and they don’t follow through. After you receive the help, be sure to act on the help or recommendations offered.

“The surest way to receive help is to practice gratitude. That’s shown in your actions and willingness to put the help offered into practice.”

The Benefits of Asking for Help

When you ask for help, you gain the capacity to push ahead. As opposed to staying “stuck,” you can learn how to move forward. 

Can you remember a time when you hesitated to ask for help? 

Odds are you felt a specific level of pressure related to the challenge you were in. 

You weren’t being as productive as you needed to be. You may have felt silly in not being certain about what steps to take next. Not trusting you could request help, may have powered side effects of nervousness. That is, until you requested the help and discovered how much time you wasted being in your head about things that could have been resolved by practicing a little bit of vulnerability.

By asking for help you gain the chance to team up and be in relationship with others. Looking for help and advice offers somebody the chance to share their gifts with you. While not every person can say “yes,” individuals with wisdom to offer, usually feel good about the request you put forward because it implies you appreciate what they have to offer enough to ask.

You gain the chance to learn. They gain the chance to give. Focus on who is happy to help, and what they are eager to do for you. While you are receiving the help be sure to take notes so you don’t need to ask for the same help twice; that would show a lack of respect for the gift of the help being offered.

Accept that you will get the help you look for. Keep in mind that as we travel through life, and as our objectives advance, the individuals that we need around us will likewise evolve. The individuals you required around you as mentors or coaches 5 years ago, or even a year back, are likely not to be the same of what you need now.

Search out those that have accomplished what you are attempting to do or have tackled the issue you need help with. To get to the next level of your aspirations, you’ll need to ask help from those who have already reach that level.

“Every time you reach your next level of life, you’ll see that it was another step on a very long journey. There is always a next level. The benefit of asking for help, eases the journey.”

Business Innovation Brief

Accountability Is a Team Sport

Accountability Is a Team Sport

Accountability Is a Team Sport

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Personal accountability is about being responsible for your decisions, actions, attitude, reaction, communication, and relationships. It is rooted in the belief that you are the controller of your life. You own your promises and commitments and the outcomes. Often the word accountability carries a heavy almost dreadful feeling, but it’s really about self-empowerment.

Personal Accountability

It takes courage to hold yourself accountable for every decision, action, attitude and results in your life. Void of ego, it would be an easy thing to accomplish, but we human are often full of pride and arrogance. We all are living with the illusion of self-perfection.

“Accountability isn’t a dirty word; it is about self-empowerment. It’s about being the captain of your life, instead of the passenger at the mercy of others.”

Unfortunately, we don’t naturally want to break that shell. Unless you are willing to come out of the shell of pride and arrogance and start accepting that no one is perfect, it is impossible to hold yourself accountable for anything.

Personal accountability requires that you:

1. Understand that no-one is perfect and all-knowing. There are always many sides of a picture we can’t see.

2. Be willing to say “I don’t know” by suppressing the ego, and arrogance.

3. Admitting when you are wrong is the toughest part, but it is guaranteed not to diminish your value. Rather your importance increases when you admit mistakes and take measures to correct them.

4. Own the commitment and outcomes. When you don’t own it, you start making excuses and blaming others, and that produces negative outcomes.

Team Accountability

Two heads are better than one, therefore one’s lone effort directed towards achieving a goal may not be enough compared to the collective effort of a team. This highlights the importance of teamwork directed towards the achievement of a mutual goal or to accomplish a job in the most efficient and effective manner.

The settings for teams include interdependence and that varies from low to average to high, depending on the collaboration, communication, and interaction level required by each team members.

In an organizational setting, teamwork has proven to be of a huge benefit. It enhances productivity and gets tasks done on time. Collaborating on a certain workplace task creates a drive for learning from each other.

“Being able to openly share ideas and discoveries with your team thrills and enhances the team and individual knowledge. It also fosters better workplace relationships amongst colleagues.”

Organization, industries and companies often solicit the help of coaches and experts who are skilled at creating effective, coherent, and motivated teams in organizational settings of all sizes and caliber.

These individuals are capable of unifying a team and improving their performance so as to increase output. Their lectures and workshops are aimed at making known the importance of teamwork, including how it can be enhanced and nurtured to yield greater effectiveness.

A successful team thrives by helping each other win. Members give each other the gift of proactive reflection. Members openly receive feedback and constructive criticism. Members respect that each person grows at their own pace.

“Teams who help each other win, by nature become accountable to each other.”

Last week I was invited by Consumer Track Inc to speak to the entire company about accountability. The speech and workshop was well received. The focus was on the proper context to hold as individuals around accountability, and ways to practice as a team.

Ways for Teams to Practice Accountability


1. When someone asks you to make a commitment — only commit if you can deliver.

2. Never make a commitment without an agreed to timeline expectation — when is it due? Only commit if you can deliver.

3. If you can’t deliver on a commitment after you’ve made it, it is your responsibility to find someone who will back you up and deliver it for you — this is when you need to remember the synergy game.


1. If you see something broken — fix it. If fixing it requires more people — organize the effort.

2. If you lack a skill — ask for help.

3. If you see someone struggling — offer help.

4. Be proactive — you are in the people to people business.

5. Take actions to correct a problem, be solution-focused


1. Reflect to people the truth about their performance or level of work

2. If goals change, seek clarity — seeing them through

3. Hold yourself and those around you accountable for delivering results, hitting deadlines, following process, effectively communicating change

4. Model the behaviors you want to see in your team

5. Be present in meetings and ask questions that generate dialogue and inspire critical thinking

Benefits of Practicing Accountability

If you have a habit of questioning yourself about any discrepancy made by you, and you take responsibility for them you will always try to correct things that go wrong, and this gives a direct boost to your performance.

Taking responsibility of any task as a team member doesn’t mean that you do your part and your duty is over, rather there is another step required. A person who takes responsibility in a team, is responsible for the actions of other team members too. You are not just accountable for yourself, rather you have to also hold other team members accountable for the commitments.

By reducing the natural tendency of blaming others, you start taking responsibility of your decisions, actions, responsibilities, and goals, you become the owner of the outcomes in our life instead of a victim. When teams stop the blame game for everything gone wrong, the relationship between team members automatically improve. The focus shifts towards finding solutions, instead of pointing fingers.

“There is no room for self-righteousness on a team. That will only serve to create distance and tension. Accountability is a team sport.”

A person with the brave nature of taking responsibility for his/her actions, especially when things go wrong, and apologizes for the mistakes to teammates, not only gains the respect from others but gives license to others to practice vulnerability.

“Teams you practice vulnerability with each other, operate with high levels of mutual-trust.”

The secret sauce to achieving team synergy and mutual accountability is three-fold and rooted in vulnerability:

1) Proactively give

2) Openly receive

3) Respect the individual’s ability to give and receive

Personal accountability has a crucial role in the performance of a team. In addition, by practicing vulnerability you foster honesty, commitment, compassion, integrity and build good team relations.

This makes for intimacy among teams, enabling them to accomplish anything together and they often do.

Photos and video clip from the Live Richer Speaker Series workshop, “Accountability Is a Team Sport” at ConsumerTrack, Inc. ConsumerTrack  owns and operates GOBankingRates.com, a personal finance website that empowers its readers to Live Richer. 

Business Innovation Brief

How to Increase Your Learning Abilities

How to Increase Your Learning Abilities

How to Increase Your Learning Abilities

Business Innovation Brief Best Article

Whether it is an advanced skill, a new technology, a second language, or new information, learning is the key to growing and understanding the world around us. Someone who abandons learning will get left behind in this day and age where every passing moment offers new awareness.

Continuous learning is essential for critical thinking, analytical mind development, and overall mental growth. Learning also broadens your vision, and your ability to see situations, problems, and techniques in broader ways.”

Besides having a photographic memory, I’ve adopted a few methodologies that help me retain massive amounts of information readily at my disposal. I am going to share them with you.

Learning is important, and so are the techniques which can help to make it faster and more efficient. The following are a few techniques to help you enhance your learning abilities.

Techniques to Enhance Learning Abilities

Relate to Realities of Your Life

Information that we are unable to relate to, become harder to learn, as compared to things that are more meaningful to us. We have learned thousands of facts and figures in school but can only recall a few of them, because for most of us school wasn’t that fun or interesting.

The only learned things that we remember are those that were meaningful to us and that we have been able to practically adopt in our life. One key to learning fast, instead of cramming information, formulas, jargon, or anything, is to figure out where the things you are learning that can be applied in your everyday life, and or the lives of those you care about.

For me the first secret to learning would be that you have to care about yourself and others enough to turn what you learn into meaningful, practical and useful information.

Learn by Doing

We learn best by doing things, by real practice. Whatever we learn through theory is stored in our memory for a short span of time until we apply it in the form of a task.

For instance, if you are trying to master a new language, talking to the natives would be the best way to learn that new language.

Similarly, listening to hundreds of lectures about Adobe Photoshop would never make you master the software, but spending a few weeks with the software, and going through trial and error will prove to be the best way to learn it.

Remember when you learned to drive a car, or ride a bike? It was only when you got on the bike, or behind the wheel that you actually learned how.

For me the second secret to learning would be that it’s best to dive in and practice what you want to learn.

Share What You Learn

One of the best ways you can learn new skills and retain them, is to share them with others. Much research supports this phenomenon. A particular study was done to test this theory.

Two groups were given a write-up to learn with different perspectives: one was expected to take a test and the other group was expected to teach it.

Surprisingly, the group that was supposed to teach it, learned the write-up better. When we learn something with the intention to teach it, we break it into simple and understandable chunks for ourselves. It also forces us to analyze the topic more critically and thoroughly. Furthermore, the need to teach others makes us revisit everything, and the information stores in our minds longer.

This works because of the first secret to learning that I’ve shared with you. You have to care about yourself and others. You won’t be motivated to learn to teach, if you don’t care about teaching people. Teaching requires caring.

One of the reasons I love to speak, and coach, and mentor is that it serves as a reminder to myself.

“When we become busy helping others learn and grow, we help ourselves continue to retain and practice what we’ve learned.”

Take Breaks

Our brains work best when we start something and complete it. This works well in executing tasks, however when it comes to learning we need to tap into diffused and scattered thoughts as well.

For learning, the focused mind, can go through certain facts and figures relating to a problem, while the diffused mental state helps you to see and imagine the bigger picture.

In such a situation, taking a break helps you to knot the dots. Working for 20–40 minutes on a project then resting for 5–10 minutes is the best way to learn. This helps to keep your mind more invigorated and saves you from metal fatigue.

Take Notes

It is considered to be faster and more convenient to take notes on a laptop but using good old fashion pen and paper helps better learn and comprehend. The physical motion of taking notes and seeing them on paper, has an impact on the brain’s ability to increase retention of information. 

Taking notes by hand enables one to identify important concepts. Using gadgets to take notes leads to distractions and mindless transcription.

Mental Spacing

Distributed learning is more productive. To remember material for a long time, it is best to review the information with regular intervals. The brain pays less attention during short intervals, so it is best to have longer intervals, such as few days or a week later.

Reviewing the information with longer intervals transmits string signals to the brain that it has to retain the information.

I never had to study for tests in school, because I used the principle of distributed learning. It not only works, it removes a lot of stress from having to cram lots of data last minute for a test, or a presentation.

Test Yourself

Tests are really effective for learning. It is more effective than re-reading and reviewing the notes. A study reveals that the students who were tested about their learning had better long-term recall of the material, even on information that was not covered by the tests. On the other hand, the students who were given extra time to study but were not tested had significantly lower recall of the materials.

This is my final secret to learning and retaining information. Make it a game. Write questions down as you learn information. Put the questions on post-it notes and post them in various places that you’ll uncover throughout the day. Have fun randomly testing yourself.

“Turn learning into a game filled with lots of little self-tests to retain massive amounts of information.”


All the above-mentioned techniques have a significant impact on learning abilities. Relatable information with practical implementation is the fastest way to store information in the mind.

Furthermore, if you take tests and/or teach others, the retention of what you learn becomes stronger.

Frequent breaks and mental spacing is also important for improving learning abilities.

Whenever you want to learn anything new, just apply the simple techniques discussed to get the best results out of your learning.

Business Innovation Brief

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