The Art Of Self-Discipline
One of the most prolific writers of the twentieth century, Elbert Hubbard, defines self-discipline as “the ability to do what you should do, when you should do it, whether you like it or not”.
Self-discipline often seems to be elusive to many of us. When we’re lacking in it, it can prevent us from getting the healthy and fit body we want as well as many other things in life.
We all have the capacity to be self-disciplined, so why do we find it so hard to exercise self control and resist impulses?
You know you should get out of bed early like you planned, but you don’t.
You know you shouldn’t have the big piece of chocolate cake that will sabotage your weight loss efforts, but you do
You know you need to exercise consistently and effectively to get the fitness and body-shaping results you desperately desire, but you give in to another excuse.
Aaaargh! How can I discipline myself and then keep up the habits day after day, week after week and year after year?
If you can relate to any of this, then you’re absolutely normal. Take comfort in the fact that the majority of people struggle with self-discipline – despite you thinking that you’re one of the only ones. However, this doesn’t have to be the case. You can put an end to procrastination, self-sabotage and excuses.
The art of self-discipline is achieved through practice and habits. Every time you practice a discipline you’re progressively re-wiring your brain to make it easier the next time. And the more you repeat this action the more it becomes a habit in your daily life.
If there’s something specific you’re wanting to achieve, then getting clear on your goals and writing them down, along with the appropriate action steps, will help you develop your self-discipline. I’ll be writing in more detail about goal-setting in next week’s blog as that’s an entire subject all on its own.
The art of self-discipline isn’t about constantly denying yourself but rather focusing on what you want so that you don’t have to live your life putting up with the things you don’t want.
It’s not always easy and like building muscle in the gym, your self-discipline habit requires time and effort – even on the days you don’t feel like it, but it’s that extra little push you give on the hard days that really reaps the rewards. That extra oomph you give to get yourself over the ‘hump’ is what will cement that habit in place even more, simply by the fact of how hard you fought for it.
You’ll prove to yourself that you CAN do it, you DO have self-discipline, and you WILL achieve everything that you desire.
Never stop believing in yourself!