Over the past several weeks I have tested out a few different routes to work. My goal is to find the quickest, most reliable (as reliable as public transportation in NYC can get), stress free commute as possible. After three weeks I think I may have found a travel route that works. It’s fast, semi-reliable, and most importantly I have access to a seat and can read comfortably with few distractions. As a result, I have been spending my morning and evening commute indulging in a classic American novel. This week I have been reminded (several times) that my commute would be better spent preparing for an important examination I must take in a few months. In an effort to shift my mindset I have been reflecting on the importance of self-discipline.
The truth is, developing and maintaining discipline can be difficult. In a recent article self-discipline was defined as “your ability to control your desires and impulses long enough to stay focused on what needs to get done to successfully achieve your goal.” In my case, controlling my desire to do everything (e.g. sleep, read, listen to a podcast) but study for this test. For Legends self-discipline is essential to success. We need discipline to excel spiritually, physically, mentally, financially, and personally. The most successful people we know have one thing in common, and that is self-discipline. They have mastered ways to focus on executing their goals without getting distracted by the circumstances of life.
I will be spending the next few weeks intentionally working on the discipline in several areas of my life. Who wants to join me?
Here are three suggestions on developing and maintaining self-discipline.
Evaluate your Goals/ Prioritize - There is something powerful about setting and accomplishing a goal. When setting goals it is important to remember that goals are not fixed, they are constantly evolving as we evolve. As your priorities shift, you will also need to adjust your goals and the steps that you need to take in order to accomplish those goals. Take some time to make a list of your current priorities. Once you do, set two- three goals, and get to work. Check out my blog post on the art of goal setting if you need some guidance creating goals.
Identify and Eliminate Distractions- Achieving your goals requires that you eliminate distractions, and that requires discipline. We can’t deny the fact that we live in a world full of distractions, and you can’t eliminate your distractions if you don’t know what they are. Take note of the things in your environment that contribute to your lack of productivity, write them down, and think about how you can eliminate each one.
Imagine what you could achieve if you turned off your phone, ignored your social media accounts, and stopped checking your favorite news sources for just a few hours each day? I challenge you to start getting rid of your major distractions. Start by committing to a certain number of focused work hours each day, then make the changes necessary for you to honor that commitment.
Stay Committed - There is a quote that has been floating around the internet that says, “commitment means staying loyal to what you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you.” Let’s be real, sometimes commitment it hard. The key to staying disciplined is to remind yourself that following through is essential to your success even when you don't feel like it! Find someone to hold you accountable or set up a system that helps you hold yourself accountable.
Remember, developing self-discipline is a process. It does not happen overnight, so start TODAY!
Remember, over the next few months I will be sharing every step of my new journey. I would love to hear about the current or upcoming changes in your life. Let's do this together! Comment below, or email me at email@example.com and let’s chat