Of Sloth And Grit: A Slacker Laments

Sloth is my favorite cardinal sin.

I’m a natural-born slacker, so maybe it’s unfair of me to choose sloth as my #1 deadly sin because it comes so easily to me, but it is the one I like the best.  It’s not that I dislike all the other cardinal sins, it’s just that I have a preference.

So imagine my disappointment when…

I’m reading one of my favorite websites, Smithsonian.com.  I see an article geared toward self-improvement, a subject that intrigues a lazybones such as myself.  The article is: If Grit Breeds Success, How Can I Get Grittier?

Reading this article I come upon a link to Angela Duckworth’s Grit Scale.  Following the link, I find and take a 10 question quiz.  My score, baffling and disheartening as it is, you can see in the image below.

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 6.45.07 AM

 This number does not please me.

Grit suggests spunk, courage, resolve.  It shows perseverance and a strength of character that a sloth-y person such as myself believes she does not have.

Then to find out that I’m grittier than 80% of American adults– well… I. am. bummed.

And it is on that point that I’m going to leave this topic today, my gentle readers.  Clearly I need to re-assess all that I think I know about myself, examine in-depth my heretofore hidden strength of grittiness, and set about figuring out what is my new favorite deadly sin.

Perhaps gluttony? Maybe envy? Suggestions anyone?!

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Looking for the crumb of truth in the cookie of life.

42 thoughts on “Of Sloth And Grit: A Slacker Laments”

  1. Gritty Sloth – sounds like a rejected Sherwin Williams color. I believe you can be a very determined sloth, Dear, so no inconsistencies from where I sit. Across from you, doing nothing as well.

    Liked by 8 people

    1. Zen-Den, it does sound like one of their paint color names: a light to medium gray, warm undertone, with a hint of green. 😉

      Yes, I am a determined sloth. Well said, my dear.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hmm. I’m at 4.0 and I, too, am disturbed by how many Americans are less gritty. Good grief, the way people go on about their accomplishments, I’d concluded everyone was ahead of me already.
    I get slothy about weeding this time of year. I’m waiting for Saturday, when they say it may be cool enough for pale, heat-hating humans to venture outdoors for any length of time.
    My preferred sin is wrath. I wish it were something more benign and lovable…like sloth or lust.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. joey, you said exactly what I was thinking: Good grief, the way people go on about their accomplishments, I’d concluded everyone was ahead of me already. I think that’s why I found this quiz so interesting. I know I’m a laid-back person, but maybe I’m not as much of one as I thought I was. 0.o

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  3. Don’t let your Grit Score undermine your sense of self-awareness. What do they know anyway? 😉

    I like Zen-Den’s comment. Gritty Sloth sounds so much better than Slothy Grit 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. joanne, good advice. Considering this is a somewhat casual quiz, I might want to hang onto my sloth-y sense of self that seems to have gotten me to a good place in life. Who needs grit?! 😉

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  4. I scored a 4.0, and I completely agree with Z-D. Grit and Sloth are not mutually exclusive. I get bursts of Determined Energy, and when suitably motivated, I get stuff done. Like you, I can fully commit to Sloth, and Determinedly So.

    I’m not happy about Having To Do Stuff, so when I do it, I am tenacious and really Get After It. The faster I can Make It Happen, the sooner I can Return To Sloth.

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    1. nance, your ways are my ways! I do what needs to be done as efficiently as possible so that I might return to my natural state of stillness, which I equate with being a sloth. It’s not that I don’t accomplish, it’s that I use grit in very specific situations to get what I want. Then I forget about grit until I need it again.

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  5. It’s not really you. It’s all the other people who are slothier than you. If you want to keep up with the neighbors you have to do less. I always said my success in business was due to being lazy. I hated doing mundane work and would come up with ideas to not have to do it. One time I did a nasty monthly report. Hated it. I sent out a memo explaining that we were updating it and if you wanted to continue to receive it, please respond to me. Yes, you guessed it. No one wanted it. I did find that they wanted two numbers each month. That did not require a report that took 3 days to do. Lazy is good.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kate, you are brilliant. Love your story, not surprised that no one wanted your lengthy report. “If you want to keep up with the neighbors you have to do less.” Words to live by!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I love Sloths, they are so cute. I would like to have the option to move so slowly that I might grow algae in my hair, and just hang about all day. I like to think of myself as a Sloth with spasmodic bursts of energy, a Sloth with restless leg syndrome.
    I took the test and Ha! I am more sloth-like than you at a 4.09.

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    1. SD Gates, show-off! Out-slothing me with your lower score. Honestly, I found this quiz fascinating. I never consider myself to be a go-getter filled with grit, but then I take a quiz and *bam* I seem to be an above-average American. Go figure?

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Allie P., so I’m not gritty, which means I am a sloth, so I am as self-aware as I thought I was before I took this quiz, which is rigged. Now that makes sense! Thanks goodness for P&G. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m only 70% grittier than most. 😦 But some of those questions can be highly subjective (she says defensively), for example, yes, I’ve quit some things but it’s because I understand how to cut my losses. I don’t know where that factors into grit, but I think it should.
    Working on High school campuses, I can tell you we are not raising enough gritty kids. I worry for them. I worry for US as a species if it continues. As to my favorite cardinal sin, I have to choose? 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. bnzoot, I agree about those questions. I give up on things because that’s what a woman with critical thinking ability does. Interesting about kids today. I hadn’t thought of grit in that context, but I’m sure you’re right. So many distractions for high school kids now that weren’t around when we were kids. We were gritty because we were bored. 🙂

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  8. This is humorous to me because I got an email from WordPress and clicked on the link and I guess it brought me to the feed but I just saw that picture and thought it was an ad! I didn’t even realize it was part of a post! That’s probably only funny to me. Anyway, I think sloths have a crazy amount of determination because they are just so slow but they still manage to make it to the places they want to go. If you were told hey you can go to the store but it’s going to take you 5 hours you’d probably say no thanks, but a sloth would be like okay no problem. Someone coined the name already, but a gritty sloth sounds pretty badass to me! (But being serious I understand how frustrating that is.)

    Liked by 2 people

    1. serena, I never thought about how my screen shot could look like an ad. That is pretty funny. You make an excellent point about how determined sloths really are. They get stuff done, just at their own pace, in their own way. I like that gritty sloth phrase, too. I can be badass. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I used to be a lot grittier than I am now. Looking at the options, I kept thinking – whatever happened to that person? But, rather like Serena said, I may be slow but I eventually get where I’m going. I lost a lot of points because right now I’m very scattered. I’m the embodiment of that joke where you’re talking about one thing and then suddenly, Oo! A penny!

    A gritty sloth? I like it. I also believe in the work smarter, not harder ideal. Efficiency is important to me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Zaz, I agree with you wholeheartedly. I get things done, but I don’t do a lot of things at once which is why I think of myself as a sloth. Once upon a time I was so scheduled, but now I’m more of a go with the flow, work smart person. I don’t know if it’s age or wisdom, but I can embrace the gritty sloth approach to life.

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      1. Haha! I got the import of the post ~ you want to believe you’re a lazy sloth not a “gritty go getter” . . .

        But after taking the quiz (which I found unscientific, biased, prejudiced, skewed, flawed, etc.), I decided to go for humor.

        I don’t know if that would change the result I got on the gritty McGrit scale or not . . . but it made me laugh.

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        1. Yes, my results worry me. But you say this test is, perhaps, flawed? *gasp* Never, ever would that have occurred to me. I mean, it is online so it has to be true, right? 😉

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  10. I scored a 2.4 which means only 10% of people are lazier than I am! To be fair, though, I thought most of the questions were too open ended and redundant. I’m one of the best and most diligent workers at my job, but at home… well, one look at the place and you’d see I don’t emerge from behind my computer desk much.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. evilsquirrel13, I’m the same way, in that work I care about gets done because I’m conscientious, but work that I don’t care about can wait until the cows come home before I’ll deal with it. [And let me tell you not many cows come home around here.]

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  11. This may be a bit of a random comment- but I just love the titles you give your posts! Of Sloth and Grit- it sounds like a classic 19th century novel from Russia. All your deadly sins are surely forgiven because you have an awesome way with words!

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    1. Chez Shea, thank you. I do try to make the titles interesting, fearing that the actual posts might not be. Plus, I’m a goof. I do hope you’re right about how I am atoning for my sins via wordsmithery. St. Peter got the memo about this, right?

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    1. susie, I was surprised by my results on this quiz. I don’t consider myself to be gritty, but who knows, huh? I get things done, so maybe that’s what the results really mean. As for gluttony, I could see it becoming my favorite cardinal sin should sloth not work out for me. 😉

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  12. I worked in state government for 19 years…yep, MOST Americans lack grit. Most of them just go through their days like zombies, waiting for the day when they can retire. Some enjoy what they do, but I saw a lot of people who had just given up on their dreams. Life as a freelance writer/novelist may be like a roller coaster, but I wouldn’t have it any other way after 19 years of blech.

    Stephanie
    http://stephie5741.blogspot.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Stephanie, that’s an interesting observation which I have no difficulty believing is true. I’m beginning to realize how much spunk I actually have, but never thought of as such. I get things done which demonstrates grit, so like others have said, I must be a gritty sloth.

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  13. I don’t want to find out my grit score is less than 1.0 so I’m steering clear of the quiz. Good luck with your search for a new fave, Ally. Lust sounds interesting . . .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Carol, I understand your decision to not know your score. I found out mine, and then began to doubt myself. Thankfully if sloth doesn’t continue to work for me there are 6 other perfectly good cardinal sins to explore.

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