Scott’s Thoughts: Compassionate Grit

“I have just three things to teach: simplicity, patience, compassion. These three are your greatest treasures.”

-Laozi, (also Lao-Tzu or Lao-Tze), ancient Chinese philosopher and writer

Woman at the top of a mountain.An increasing amount of research suggests that success is not determined by natural genius or innate talent so much as it is grit, “positive, non-cognitive trait based on an individual’s passion for a particular long-term goal or end state, coupled with a powerful motivation to achieve their respective objective.”

But staying positive in the face of adversity can be a real challenge. This is especially true when your motivation flags, or you’ve allowed yourself to slack off. This feeling of having “let yourself down” can really derail you if you let it get under your skin.

So how do you recover quickly and keep on the gritty path towards your long-term success? I believe compassion is a key part of the solution.

Compassion ”motivates people to go out of their way to help the physical, spiritual, or emotional hurts and pains of another.” We often think of compassion as something reserved for others, but we should also consider it in the context of our own struggles. So often our own worst critic, we should, instead, regard ourselves as we would a friend. To endure, we too need encouragement, forgiveness, and a voice which says, “Hey, it’s okay. It isn’t the first time you slipped and it might not be your last. Just keep your why in mind and do your best to get back on track.”

There’s power in forgiving ourselves. It shuts down negative narratives and helps keep the prize in mind. The next time you feel yourself slip, deal yourself a little compassion.

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