29. How much do effort, talent, and desire matter?

I just started reading Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth and she talks about how talent*effort = skill and skill*effort = achievement. Basically, natural talent exists, but effort matters just as much or even more.

In schools now, they teach a growth mindset, instead of a fixed mindset. Instead of feeling stuck, like they can’t learn anymore, kids can instead learn that they can grow and become better.

I think that being naturally talented at something can be a disadvantage. I didn’t always learn to work very hard in some things: for example, I didn’t have to study much in school.

But there were things I did have to work at: I wasn’t naturally athletically talented, but I did do sports and learned how to get better. I’ve learned how to renovate and build things. I even learned how to code a bit in R, which did not feel natural at first.

In addition to effort and talent, you also have to be very interested and dedicated to something to get good at it. I’ve fizzled out on a lot of things because I just didn’t care that much. In order to put in the effort, you have to actually want it enough to keep going when it’s difficult.

I was frustrated the other day because I felt like I had failed too many times–not so much in achieving certain things, but I just get lazy and distracted often in my daily life. I want to learn how to put in more effort.

Part of that is focusing on the things that I am passionate about. Another part is that when it gets hard, I keep doing it anyway.