How To Be Successful By Using The Art Of Self-Discipline
Lately, I’ve struggled with the simplest of tasks. My self-discipline habit was no more, replaced by the curse we call procrastination – a thief of life.
I stopped setting goals, ate a disgusting amount of fast-food, stopped valuing my friendships much, and spent most of my time enjoying the latest AC Valhalla game. It was great until it wasn’t.
That feeling started to kick in. You know, the “what the heck am I doing” feeling. I hate that feeling, and I know how it feels because I’ve been here before.
I knew that change was necessary, and fortunately, based on experience, I knew exactly what to do to get back on track. I had to establish the habit of self-discipline.
The first step in establishing self-discipline is to accept full responsibility for your actions.
Learning to accept full responsibility for your actions can be empowering. It expresses leadership, bravery — but most importantly, learning to take full responsibility for your actions gives you the power to make positive, life-changing decisions.
You’d be surprised by the number of people who fail to accept responsibility for their actions. They mope around, pointing fingers at others for their failures, failing to learn from their mistakes. Maybe that’s why so few are truly successful?
Plan your days in advance, set priorities, and get to work.
The best thing you can do for yourself (after accepting responsibility) is to commit to what you say you’ll do before you do it. Plan out your day in advance. Write down at least three big priorities for tomorrow, and tackle those priorities first thing in the morning.
By doing this each and every day, slowly, you’ll establish the habit of self-discipline, which is when you do what you say you’ll do, even if you don’t feel like doing it.
Write down your goals
Your top three priorities each day should be directly related to your biggest goals. Think long-term, because self-discipline is also the ability to put long-term gain over short-term pleasures.
Don’t just write down your goals once, though, and leave the paper to collect dust or get thrown in the trash.
Use a journal or a notebook, and rewrite your goals every morning or evening.
As time goes on, you’ll accomplish some goals, and others will change. Adapt your top priorities to align with these goals as you move forward.
Practice Delayed Gratification
I love to play video-games. It’s a challenge for me to avoid picking up my controller first thing in the morning. That’s why I use my video-game “addiction” to practice delayed gratification.
Every morning I’ll force myself to read for at least 30 minutes — if it’s a good book, I’ll read longer than that) — and write for at least one hour before I can pick up my controller. It’s a challenge, and I don’t always succeed, but that’s where the power of momentum kicks in.
“Consistency is the key to achieving and maintaining momentum.” — Darren Hardy
Darren Hardy wrote a book in 2010 titled The Compound Effect, focusing on the power of momentum — or as he calls it, Big Mo.
You see, we as humans have an incredible power called momentum, similar to a moving vehicle. At only five miles per hour, that vehicle may not be capable of smashing through a brick wall.
But at 50mph? I bet it’d be capable of doing some damage.
The same thing applies to you. Even though it may seem like forever, you can build the habit of self-discipline, you can accomplish your goals — all of them — you can, and you will.
“Desire is the key to motivation, but it’s determination and commitment to an unrelenting pursuit of your goal — a commitment of excellence — that will enable you to attain the success you seek” — Mario Andretti