Photo by CC user Lance Cpl. Scott M. Biscuiti (public domain)
Without self-discipline, human beings wouldn’t be able to achieve any of our goals. Self-discipline is necessary for operating successfully in everyday life, as well as being crucial in achieving our biggest and best dreams. Just like anything, self-discipline takes practice to perfect. We’ve collated our top 6 tips for mastering the art of self discipline.
Take care of yourself physically, emotionally and spiritually
Before you can embark on your self-discipline journey, it’s vital that your mind and body are in a sound place. After all, for most people, they pig out on unhealthy foods when they’re feeling emotional or stressed; or they miss the gym when they’re feeling tired and run-down. If you make sure that you’re well-rested, well-fed and emotionally balanced, self-discipline is going to be a much easier path to undertake.
Be clear about your goals
Make sure that the self-discipline journey you are choosing correlates with the goals you have in mind. For example, there’s not much point training to become a professional surfer if you don’t live near the ocean! Think about the goals you want to achieve, and set self-disciplinary tasks accordingly. For example, you may want to increase your guitar skills. This would result in you setting an allocated, achievable time each day to sit down and hone your craft.
Move from external to internal discipline
For everyone, self-discipline is not built-in. It initially arises out of the instruction of parents, teachers and trainers. This is why it can be a good option to start self-discipline with an external source, such as a personal trainer for exercise. They can introduce you to the idea of consistently working hard, and you tend to obey the rules as you have someone to be held accountable to. After time, you no longer need your personal trainer to force you to the gym, as it will have become habit.
In order to keep our minds and bodies balanced, so we can best practice self-discipline, it’s important we engage in regular exercise. Whether this be as light as going for a brisk walk first thing in the morning, or as heavy as going to a gym class every day, exercise releases endorphins that are essential for keeping our mood balanced and body healthy. A more balanced mind and active body means that we will be better equipped to deal with the hardship of self-discipline.
Another great way to centre our thoughts and placate our mind is to do regular meditation. Meditation isn’t about entering a temple and becoming aligned with a particular religion. It’s simply about practising the art of mindfulness. Mindfulness helps us to live and experience each and every moment wholly and fully, resulting in us dwelling less on things out of our control, such as the past and the hypothetical future. This means that we can make decisions efficiently, react appropriately and most of all, are able to truly enjoy the moment we are living in.
As well as meditation, another great way to focus your mind whilst working on your body is to take a martial arts class. Martial arts requires both mental focus and physical aptitude, resulting in an increased wellbeing of both your body and mind. There are a wide variety of martial arts classes you can undertake, ranging from krav maga to jiu jitsu to karate.
Whether you plan to lose weight, change careers or develop a new skill, a certain level of self-discipline is required to meet those goals. Utilise these 6 helpful tips, and before you know it you’ll be well on your way to mastering the beneficial art of self-discipline.