Learning Self Discipline can be a life long journey. What works for you at one stage of life may not work at another. What works for you in one area of life may not work in another. However, don’t view this as a negative. See it as, the joy is in the journey or process.
I have been talking about learning self discipline for many years. I have applied these strategies myself to varying degrees over the years. However it wasn’t until I was a property mentor back in 2010 that I formalised the successful strategies I used and titled it: Adopt a Disciplined Approach.
What I mean by this is, to adopt a disciplined approach in all aspects of whatever it is you aim to achieve. Although I taught this in the area of wealth creation. It was during these training workshops that I knew the same strategies could be applied to any area of life.
It is about:
- Attention to detail.
- Having a clear vision
- Anticipating how you will feel when you achieve your outcome and
- Being disciplined in your thoughts and actions
To apply these strategies let’s create a scenario to refer too throughout this post. For example, lets use the goal of improving your health and well being through an improved diet. I’m not talking about going on a specific diet but more a lifestyle.
For example, I have recently chosen to reduce carbohydrates (low carb) and caffeine in my diet. I have known for sometime that I feel better and more energetic when I do. However, particularly a low carb lifestyle is more challenging to achieve in a modern world that is so heavy on carbohydrates. (Just for the record, I’m not talking about increasing proteins, it’s more about increasing portions of vegetables). Therefore adopting a disciplined approach is needed particularly researching and sourcing low carb substitutes.
Where Your Focus goes Energy Flows
this is not my quote and I will credit it when I confirm the author
Therefore, what you focus on, your energy and efforts go towards that focus.
Using the low carb lifestyle example. When I focus on how more challenging it is to live a low carb lifestyle compared to the convenience of carbohydrates then it becomes a battle to achieve. But when I focus on how I know I feel when I consume less carbohydrates, I am motivated to stick to my chosen discipline of reducing carbohydrates in my diet. It is motivating because I feel better and often look better, health wise too.
Attention to Detail
Learning Self Discipline requires attention to detail. I find focusing on the details necessary to achieve your goal is a good positive distraction. And it becomes a success strategy. I believe if you can immerse yourself in all the good of what it is you want to achieve this feeds your motivation to stay focused and therefore disciplined.
In addition, tracking your progress helps too. Particularly if you’ve been working towards your goal for some time. It is good to take a moment and reflect on how far you have come from when you first began. It’s important to give yourself a pat on the back at milestone points of success along the way to the overall goal.
For example, today I went food shopping for the week. Before I left, I took the time to consult a low carb recipe book and wrote a specific list of ingredients to create about 5 different low carb meals. Therefore staying focused on these details prevented the temptations at the supermarket check out of endless snack foods placed there to tempt you at the end of your shopping.
Having a Clear Vision
Visualising in detail your end result, goal or outcome definiely helps. Be mindful here, not to the point that you spend all your time visualising and no time spent taking action to achieve your goal. Taking action is equally important. Your vision assists you to remain motivated on a daily basis and therefore to continue to take action.
Creating and documenting your vision can be through creating a Vision Board; writing in your journal or goals book; meditating on your goals and many other ways. Choose a strategy that resonates with you. Something that gets you excited and motivated to achieve your goals.
Therefore, my clear vision of achieving and maintaining a low carb lifestyle is one where I feel more energetic, I have less allergy (hay fever) symptoms and I feel better and look better in my existing wardrobe.
Imagine How Success Feels
Critical to success of this self discipline stategy To Adopt a Disciplined Approach is thinking about how you will feel when you achieve your goal.
I learnt this and how to apply it from Sharman, William Whitecloud in his practical workshops based on the principles of what he raises in his book The Magician.
For my low carb example, imaging success is easy. As I have said earlier, I know a low carb lifestyle results in me feeling better healthwise and also looking better in my clothes – the latter is a great bonus!
Disciplined Thoughts and Actions
What you say to yourself has a direct link to your motivation to take action. Therefore be disciplined in the thoughts you think, particularly about yourself. This is where simple affirmations can be used to off set any negative thoughts that come up throughout the day.
I like to set a weekly intention and write an affirmation for either that week or month that I remind myself of each morning. My favourite at the moment is:
I am in control, I am calm, I am focused
I think Louise L Hay summarises it well:
Every thought we think is creating our future.