Mastering Self Discipline

October 6, 2019

© Carole Kanchier, PhD

 “Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.” Mahatma Gandhi

Willpower is the ability to control oneself and determine one’s actions, displaying self-control within and without. You can learn to have control over yourself to attain desired success.

Although there are many important qualities that can contribute to a person’s achievements and happiness, there is only one that begets sustainable, long term success in all aspects of life: self discipline. Whether its in terms of your diet, fitness, work ethic or relationships, self discipline is the number one trait needed to accomplish goals lead a healthy lifestyle, and ultimately be happy.

Research suggests people with high self control are happier than those without self discipline. They did not allow their choices to be dictated by impulses or feelings. Instead, they made informed, rational decisions on a daily basis without feeling stressed.

Self-Discipline Tips

  1. Wake up early and make your bed every morning. This sets the tone and the pattern of discipline for the rest of the day.
  2. Know your weaknesses. We all have weaknesses Whether they are snacks like potato chips or watching video games. They have similar effects on us. Acknowledge your shortcomings, whatever they may be. You can not overcome these until you own up to your flaws.
  3. Remove temptations. ”Out of sight out of mind.” This phrase offers powerful advice. By removing your biggest temptation from your environment you will improve self-discipline. If you want to eat healthier, don’t buy junk food
  4. . Exercise. Do something physical. This gives you momentum in the right direction. Exercise also has real physiological impacts on the body and mind that pay dividends all day. Eat healthy food.
  5. Create a to-do list and complete the tasks. Outline a schedule or task list and execute it. Write the list the night before, and then do what you said you would do.
  6. 6. Do the things that make you uncomfortable (your weaknesses) Don’t let your preconceived ideas of who you are get in the way of growing into who you want to be. If speaking to a group is uncomfortable, find opportunities to practice it. If running at the track makes you uncomfortable, go run.
  7. Set clear goals and have an execution plan. Have a clear vision of what you want to accomplish. Break the goal down to small, doable steps. Create a mantra to keep yourself focused. Make a commitment to yourself and keep it. When you really want something, you will find a way. When you don’t really want something, you’ll find an excuse. Set yourself a standard and adhere to it.
  8.  Be gentle with yourself. Realize everyone experiences setbacks as they work toward goals. View setbacks as learning experiences as you work toward your goal, not failures.
  9. Watch “self-talk.” Each time you catch yourself saying something that fuels your lack of confidence, say “cancel,” and replace it with a more positive statement. Shift your vocabulary from being a victim to someone with power and strength.
  10. Track progress. Write the action you want to accomplish daily (make your bed, read a chapter of a book, journal, exercise, call a friend, complete to-do list, etc.) and color in the box corresponding with the correct date once you’ve completed the action.

Work.  If you want to transform your life in a positive way, you need to make it happen. Put in the hours, the days, the weeks, the months, and the years. Get on the path to a better you and stay on the path. The road requires discipline and work.

Expand your horizons. Go beyond borders. Prepare for and welcome the unexpected. Innovate, adapt, explore, seize opportunities. Nothing is beyond reach!

Follow the examples of Questers in “Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life”:

Paramahansa Yogananda gives good advice. “Proper visualization by the exercise of concentration and willpower enables us to materialize thoughts, not only as dreams or visions in the mental realm but also as experiences in the material realm.” 

Author Bio: Carole Kanchier, PhD, is an internationally recognized newspaper/digital columnist, registered psychologist, coach and author of award winning, Questers Dare to Change Your Job and Life.  Kanchier has taught at University of California, Berkeley and Santa Cruz, University of Alberta, and other institutions of higher learning. Dr. Kanchier is known for her pioneering, interdisciplinary approach to human potential.