Part 2 | Strengths and Grit


April 29, 2016

*** Hi Readers, Let’s be friends on Facebook!  Find me at: Zachary Carlsen ***

5 Thoughts

It takes more time and energy to create something than it does to destroy it.  Plain and simple.

So, the creation of something as extraordinary as lasting change in our lives is going to be a process.  And, because it doesn’t happen overnight, as we progress incrementally, we have time to take in the scenery and overthink things.

That is, the road to shifting the paradigm is lined with reasons to quit, reasons to stay in our comfort zone, and reasons to do something else.  It can be easy to get lost along the way or give up entirely.  This is why staying focused on the vision is key, as opposed to the outcome.  Focusing on the vision allows us to enjoy the ride, focusing on the outcome forces us to miss everything along the way.  In that way, the quality of our grit is directly linked to the clarity of our vision.

Yes, it’s true, grit can mean staying focused on a goal and putting in relentless effort to reach it—on the flipside, there is another type of grit, which might be known better as crippling fear or obstinate stubbornness, wherein a person remains steadfast and determined not to change.  In which case, the vision is one of despair and hopelessness, which, too, will come true when it is the center of one’s focus.  Grit bends both ways.

So, is it more effort, sometimes, to stay the same than it is to change?

3 Questions

When is a time that I persevered?

As a child, how did those around me show (or not show) grit in how they were living?

How far is up?

One Action

This is a thinking exercise that can produce really profound results in the realm of changing your mood.  You can start this exercise feeling down in the dumps and walk away from it feeling renewed.  It takes ten minutes and all you need is a pen, some paper, and your phone.  Write down ten positive words in a list on the blank page—they don’t have to be connected directly and they can be memories, too—anything that triggers feelings of joy.  For example:


The cabin






My nieces



Set the timer on your phone for ten minutes and work your way down the list, thinking about each word for a full minute and then moving on.  The energy that they create stacks on top of itself, line-by-line, and by the bottom it can feel almost euphoric to have spent ten minutes conjuring up the feelings of these words.

Be your greatness. Start. Do. Go.

Circle Photo

Zach Carlsen is the grateful lead blogger at

His strengths of Ideation, Connectedness, Input, Strategic, and Empathy have taken him all over the world.  He is an inventor, athlete, joyous wanderer/wonderer, translator, poet, and Transformation Coach.

Connect with him:


Twitter: @zstrengthslife

Facebook: Zachary Carlsen

One thought on “Part 2 | Strengths and Grit

  1. I have a gratitude journal. I also write little words on my calendar. After working in mental health and seeing family members grow up and live a life in turmoil I realize some people won’t do this even if you give them the tools. Some are stubborn yes, but some are just unable. I do wish I had this thought when I worked in mental health. I think when you do exercises often they tend to stick with you. Nice post.

    Liked by 1 person

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