Self-discipline is one of the most important and useful skills everyone should possess. This skill is essential in every area of life, and though most people acknowledge its importance, very few do something to strengthen it.
Contrary to common belief, building self discipline does not mean being harsh with yourself, or living a limited, restrictive lifestyle. Building this skill means using common sense, making priorities, and thinking before acting.
This skill gives you the power to stick to your decisions and follow them through, without changing your mind. It is one of the important requirements for achieving your goals and carrying out tasks.
Studies have shown that students with a high degree of this skill retained more knowledge than those without it. This is because they are more persevering and possess the inner strength to focus on their studies.
Did you know that the possession of this skill enables you to persevere with your decisions and plans until you accomplish them?
Do you know that after you improve this skill, it would it become easier to develop good habits and get rid of bad habits? It would also become easier to overcome addictions, overeating, procrastination and laziness.
If you wish to possess more inner strength and stronger willpower, you need to start working on developing your discipline.
Self Discipline Definition
To understand this topic better, here are a few definitions.
- Self-discipline means self-control, the ability to avoid unhealthy excess of anything that could lead to negative consequences.
- It is the ability to reject instant gratification and pleasure, in favor of some greater gain, which requires spending effort and time to get it.
- It means perseverance and not giving up.
- It is the strength not to give in to negative feelings.
- It means overcoming one’s weaknesses.
- It is the ability to pursue one plans despite temptations to abandon them.
- Delayed gratification in favor of accomplishing long term goals.
A disciplined person is more punctual than other people, and is more likely to take control and responsibility for his or her life. Such a person can set goals, and take concrete steps to achieve them.
Self discipline is one of the important ingredients of success. It expresses itself in a variety of ways:
- It manifests as the ability to persevere.
- It is the ability not to give up, despite failure and setbacks.
- It the the skill of self control.
- It is the ability to resist distractions and temptations.
- It expresses itself as the ability to try over and again, until you accomplish what you set out to do.
Life puts challenges and problems on the path to success and achievement. In order to rise above them, you have to act with perseverance and persistence, and this of course, requires discipline.
The possession of this skill leads to self esteem and confidence, and consequently, to happiness and satisfaction.
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On the other hand, lack of self discipline can lead to failure, loss, spoiling of relationships, health problems, obesity, and therefore, to unhappiness.
Here are a few examples:
- You might not be able to resist eating a cone of ice cream when you are trying to lose weight.
- Sometimes, might react in anger or act impulsively, and therefore, hurt the people you love.
- Are you addicted to the social media and cannot put your smartphone away for a little while?
- If you lack this skill, you will not be able to persevere with your plans or carry out your decisions.
- You would be unable to curb your anger.
- If you cannot control bad habits, cannot stop overeating, and lack the inner strength to exercise your body, you will hurt your health.
- Lack of discipline is one other main reasons for the failure lose weight.
I believe that you realize now how important of this skill for overcoming eating disorders, addictions, smoking, drinking and negative habits.
You need this skill in order to sit and study, exercise your body, develop new skills, and for self improvement, spiritual growth and meditation.
As said earlier, most people acknowledge the importance and benefits of self discipline, but very few take real steps to develop and strengthen it. However, you can strengthen this ability like any other skill. This is done through training and exercises.
Self Discipline Benefits and Importance
Being disciplined can help you in many areas of your life.
I would like to repeat what I said earlier, and mention a few more benefits of being disciplined.
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Being disciplined would help you do the following:
- Avoid acting rashly and on impulse.
- Carry out the promises and decisions you make to yourself and to others.
- Make wise and healthy choices.
- Overcome laziness and procrastination.
- Continue working on a project, even after the initial rush of enthusiasm has faded away.
- It would become easier to get up and exercise, go to the gym, go for a walk or swim.
- Continue working on your diet, and resisting the temptation of eating fattening foods.
- Breaking a bad habit would become a breeze.
- You will have the inner strength to get out of bed in the morning promptly, even if it is cold.
- It will give you the strength to overcome the habit of watching too much TV.
- You will meet your tasks and goals confidently and pursue them assiduously.
- Stay focused when working, reading or studying.
Accomplishing even just a small part of this list is a great achievement, which can have positive effects on your life.
It will be easier for you to strengthen your self discipline, if you:
- Understand its importance in your life.
- Become aware of your undisciplined behavior and its consequences. When this awareness increases, you will be more convinced of the need to make a change in your life.
- Make the effort to act according to the decisions you make, regardless of laziness, or the desire to give up and stop what you are doing./li>
You can strengthen your self disciple with the help of special simple exercises. You can find these exercises in my book on this topic.
How to be Disciplined
To be disciplined does not mean that you act according to other people’s rules of conduct or being obedient to others. It means being obedient to your own self, and acting according to your common sense and reason. It means sticking with your plans and not changing them due to laziness and difficulties.
How to become more disciplined?
Here are a few suggestions to develop your self discipline:
- Think and consider the consequences of your action before you act.
- Wait and think for a moment before you reacting in anger.
- Set small goals and plans that you can carry out during the day. Stick with them until you carry them out, despite the tendency to procrastinate or give up. This will give you, in time, the strength to handle bigger goals and plans,
- In every area of your life, do not give up easily if you encounter obstacles.
- Focus your attention on what you are doing.
- When studying, working or exercising, strive to avoid any distractions.
- Try to be courageous enough to get out of your comfort zone.
- When feel you want to quit, just continue for some more time.
- Make some small plans for the day, and strive to carry them through.
Start with Simple Small Task and Actions
It is often overwhelming and daunting to take care of big projects, but easier to tackle small ones. Start small tasks, and carry them out despite your inner resistance. This would improve your discipline and self-control, and strengthen your confidence and faith in yourself.
You can, for example, take a walk, even if would rather stay at home and watch TV. You can cook dinner, instead of eating some junk food. You can or clean one of the drawer of your desk, instead of just sitting down and doing nothing.
You will improve and get stronger when you start small and focus on small tasks.
“I think self-discipline is something, it’s like a muscle. The more you exercise it, the stronger it gets.”
“It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop.”
“Discipline really means our ability to get ourselves to do things when we don’t want.””
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As in everything in life, practice is most important. Over a period of time, you will see great improvement.
I hope this short article will give you the motivation and inspiration to develop this useful skill.
- Do you wish to develop this important skill?
- Do you wish to be able to accomplish goals?
- Do you wish to have more control over your reactions and habits?
- Do you wish to be able to persevere with whatever you do?
If you do, you should consider to improve self discipline.
For full guidance and simple exercises, please check out the book mentioned below.
Even a few minutes a day of practicing the simple exercises it teaches can take you far.