By now, most people have seen this video of Michael Phelps produced by Under Armour. If you have not watched it, you should. This ad may be identified as an important moment in the understanding of GRIT, but years down the line. For now, we are used to seeing interviews with olympic individual athletes, and seeing their glorious moments, and showing some of the backstory. What this video captures, however is something deeper and visceral about the daily anguish, the acceptance of barely inches of progress daily, indeed the mundanity that is never popularized by the media when depicting success. Congratulations to UA and Michael.
So, if this is so well captured, why might it take years to be seen as important. It is because GRIT will, over time (in a gritty way), become understood in its proper place, above talent, and above knowledge. The understanding of the power of GRIT will be similar to technical innovation that seems far-fetched, and only years later can it be seen with hindsight for its insightfulness. Watch the AT&T “You Will” campaign from the early 1990’s, and you will see what I mean. Link here – Enjoy.