How to gain self-discipline for your everyday life

Brooklyn Riepma

In order to get tasks and responsibilities done, you need some self-discipline. It’s important to evaluate yourself and get to the root of why you’re not accomplishing everything you want to. Self-discipline is about finding ways to control your actions and thoughts.

Here are a few ways to incorporate more self-discipline into your life in order to get more done and stop being stuck in a rut.

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The bigger purpose

The most crucial factor in self-disciple is understanding exactly why you are undertaking a task. If you have goals and clearly understand how a job is an element of achieving those goals, then an individual has a far greater chance of completing it.

For example, You intend to go on vacation abroad. You do not have a passport. To go on the trip, you must have one. It is going to be extremely likely you will complete this task and obtain the document.

By expanding this to a broader context and setting life goals, if it is understood how each undertaking relates to that life goal, then it makes it far more likely that you will carry out the task.

It is essential not to make the goal so all-embracing that the relevance to the ultimate goal becomes disconnected from the task. It is better to have layered goals. For example, “I want to be a successful author” is your life goal. Instead of trying to associate the life goal with the task of “sitting down to write a chapter,” it would be better to insert an intermediate target of “I want to write a successful book.”

Procrastination reduction

Procrastination can affect many aspects of our life. One excellent method of overcoming procrastination is to break down the task that is causing the problem into smaller segments. 

Complete each part in turn, giving yourself some little reward for successful completion. The overall mission will cease to be such a mountain and become a series of small hills, which each offer you a small reward when you master them.

Identify the reasons for failure 

On the occasions that you are not self-disciplined enough to succeed, use that event as a learning tool. Analyze why you failed and what the cause of the failure was.

Maybe you sat down to write that chapter of your book but got nowhere. Looking back, you can see that you were distracted by an interesting thread on Facebook. To avoid this happening again, ensure that you have no access to Facebook when you next sit down to write.

Try meditation 

Meditation isn’t for everyone, but the practice has gained mainstream popularity in recent years. There are a variety of ways to meditate, but the basic premise is to get into a space that allows you to leave behind any distracting thoughts. 

Meditation can help us learn techniques for blocking extraneous thoughts. A disciplined mind that is nurtured and trained through meditation will also be one which has greater willpower.

Start with the little things 

If we look at people who are attempting to lose weight, we find that people who suddenly go all out with hours spent at the gym and starvation diets may make rapid initial progress. However, in the long run, the amount of willpower required to enforce such an oppressive regime cannot be maintained. Far better to take it slow and build a program that is not difficult to maintain. Within a relatively short period, this will become a habit and no longer require any willpower to support it.

It is clear that by using our willpower to make the quick wins, picking off the low hanging fruit, we are improving our view of self-worth. We see success instead of constant failure. Instead of just excusing ourselves by saying “I just have no willpower”, we know that we do have willpower and that gradually we can train ourselves to take on more significant challenges.

Measure progress

There is a saying in business that goes something like “what you cannot measure can’t be improved, and what is measurable can be improved.” We learn from this that it is far better to choose a goal or define a task with some measurable outcome. Which is likely to be more successful, “I will run more” or “I will run six laps today.”? 

The first statement has no metrics to measure, and if we are finding it hard, we can easily convince ourselves that we have run more. If, however, we have a figure such as six laps, then we either have, or have not, run six laps, and there is no debate or doubt.

Final thoughts

Self-discipline is not set at birth. It can be developed and improved if we choose. People should regard self-discipline as a muscle that can be trained and made stronger whenever the individual decides. Just like with any other muscle, there are techniques, like the ones described that will build your self-discipline a little at a time. Do not test it with unbearable stress at first. Take your time and check it with smaller, measurable tasks each day.

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Hi! I'm Brooklyn. I love writing articles that make people smile and laugh. I also write about pop culture, social media, and travel.

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