Those Girls Got Grit!

Yes, okay, “Those Girls Have Grit” is grammatically correct, but “Got Grit” is catchier. What does that mean? Grit can be a particle or granule, like sand. It can also be a personality trait, “firmness of character; indomitable spirit”. 

I recently finished Angela Duckworth’s book called Grit, and enjoyed it so much that I immediately hopped on Youtube to watch her TED Talk. I then found myself questioning my own grit and of those around me. When thinking of one’s grit, I think of excellence. Excellence is what we strive for at Imagine. Excellence is an attitude. It’s also the courage to face failure with the willingness to improve and be better.  Grit is not about natural talent or IQ, it’s a mentality that there is always a better way, and having the willingness to find it.

The 2017 PGA Championship began Monday in Charlotte, NC, our hometown. It’s the final major golf tournament of the year, bringing the top players together for major competition. The winner won’t be the most naturally talented, the winner will likely be the grittiest. 

At the Championship, there was another gritty group meeting at The Women Trailblazers Breakfast hosted by Bank of America. Dottie Pepper, Rosalyn Durant and Dana Rader led a panel discussion on women in business, sports and as leaders. All 3 of these women are “trailblazers” in their industries. Dottie, a pro-American golfer and now a commentator (the first woman to call golf) for CBS Sports, has won two major championships and 17 LPGA Tour Events.  Rosalyn, who launched her career as an intern at ESPN, is now their Senior Vice President of College networks, not to mention becoming a top executive within an industry dominated by men. Dana is the founder and CEO of Dana Rader Golf School, a Golf Channel Academy rated as one of the Top 25 golf schools in the U.S. by Golf Magazine. She will be inducted into the LPGA Teaching and Club Pro Hall of Fame this month.

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These 3 women have grit, their own unique blend of passion and perseverance, to do what they do well. Regardless of talent and intelligence, these women are constantly driven to improve, trailblazers in their own right. When asked about being a trailblazer, Dana Rader stated, “When one door closes you can crawl through a window.” Rosalyn added, “Fear forces me to prepare. If it doesn’t work, the world is still spinning. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. We learned something, then we move on.”

I believe grit and excellence go hand in hand.  Prior to attending that breakfast event, I watched my daughter’s first dance recital. While her class’ performance was as cute as the 4-year-old twirling ballerinas in their pink tutus, the dance school’s competition team actually blew me away. These girls and boys, ages 5-18 rocked that stage. They were in tune with every turn, twirl, and facial expression. They were on point, completely choreographed and executed with excellence. These dancers offered such an impactful performance, I left that auditorium wondering how I could use that stage and their performance as my guide. 

We all have a role; we all have a job.  Each and every one can be rehearsed over and over again, fine-tuned for everyday tasks or for that major performance, that sales pitch, that conference call, that big meeting. Then, it can be improved, critiqued and adjusted some more. 

Do what you do and do it well, whatever that might be. 
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