August 23, 2020 9:00 pm

Monday, Neil deGrasse Tyson and Angela Duckworth Explore Grit

What is grit? How does it work? And, how do you measure your own grit? On this week’s episode of StarTalk Radio, Neil deGrasse Tyson and comic co-host Chuck Nice answer fan-submitted Cosmic Queries about grit with the undisputed world-expert on grit: Angela Duckworth, PhD.

NASA’s image of astronaut John Glenn entering the Friendship 7 Capsule before launch.

John Glenn entering the Friendship 7 Capsule before his historic flight. Image Credit: NASA.

Angela is a psychologist and the author of the best-selling book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance. You’ll learn how Angela’s work has changed the dialogue on what is it to achieve. Angela tells us a bit about her organization Character Lab. Character Lab is a “nonprofit organization that connects researchers with educators to create greater knowledge about the conditions that lead to social, emotional, academic, and physical well-being for young people throughout the country.”

We talk about why the term “character” might be out of fashion in modern times. Then, we dive into the Cosmic Queries – and there were A LOT of them. We start by exploring resiliency. We investigate our affinity for stories. Why do you remember a story better than a set of facts or data?

We look at how the science of grit can relate to the cosmic perspective. Angela tells us about the Stanford marshmallow experiment. We discuss procrastination. After that, we get into “death talk.” Angela explains why she likes to keep the idea of death relevant in her life and conversations.

We explore the work of cognitive psychologist K. Anders Ericsson, PhD, who was the world’s expert on world experts, and, whose research uncovered the “10,000 hours to be great” methodology. Find out why there are certain times where you should give up. You’ll hear why comparing yourself to other people is not as useful as comparing you to yourself.

Discover more about perseverance and the differences between self-esteem and self-efficacy. Lastly, we ponder if grit is generational. All that, plus, we ask, do you still need grit if you love doing something?

Please join us tomorrow for Exploring Grit, with Angela Duckworth at 7pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re a StarTalk+ Patron you can watch or listen to this episode ad-free at 7pm, too.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
– Ian Mullen

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