Why Self-Discipline Is a Muscle You Should Start Flexing
By Patricia Moreno
When I was growing up, I thought the word discipline meant punishment. I didn’t like to be reprimanded, be told what to do, or follow rules. When I was in my 30s, I finally realized that line of thinking wasn’t doing me any good and that I needed to develop the muscle of self-discipline.
After reading The Yoga of Discipline by Gurumayi, I basically put myself into self-discipline boot camp.
I had a life coach at the time and the rules were strict. If I didn’t follow through on what I said I was going to do, I would have to pay a fine, give up drinking coffee the next day, or even do something more drastic.
Why did I want to put myself through this? I wanted to develop the ability to follow through on the things I said I wanted to do. I wanted to stop overindulging frequently and eat more healthfully. I wanted to stop regretting my choices and feeling hopeless in the attainment of my dreams. I wanted my weight to stop fluctuating constantly and to stop using unsustainable means to manage it. I knew that my bad attitude needed an overhaul, and I wanted a change. I was tired of letting myself down, and I finally realized that letting myself off the hook wasn’t always the answer.
Sometimes, I needed to simply follow through on things whether I felt like it or not. I needed to keep my word and delay instant gratification. In other words, I needed to flex my self-discipline muscle much more.
The Power of Self-Discipline
It sure wasn’t easy, but it was a great investment I made in myself. It radically improved my life and how I felt about myself and opened my mind up to more possibilities than I had envisioned before.
Take a second to think about it. What is holding you back from achieving your goals?
As we move into the new year—a time of reflection and new beginnings—it is a great opportunity to become more self-aware. Ask yourself, “What would my life be like if I had a little more self-discipline? What would more self-discipline open up the door to for me to accomplish?”
This year, instead of simply thinking of goals you want to achieve like losing 20 pounds or making an extra 100k, I invite you to instead focus on your character. Decide to use your goals as opportunities to develop self-discipline, integrity, self-acceptance, confidence, or appreciation.
The goals are a way to keep yourself in the game of becoming a total badass, inside and out, but when you set them, don’t think about the goal as the prize. Instead, focus on who you need to become in order to experience more personal fulfillment.
When you focus on developing yourself instead of simply achieving a goal, a whole new world of opportunities will open up for you. Exercise your power to choose.
Patricia Moreno—a Guest Expert for The Nutrition School—is all about helping people awaken their inner bad-ass by combining practices that exercise mental, physical, and spiritual muscle so they can live a life of Thinner Peace. Her secret recipe is the integration of mind, body, and spirit and the deliberate development of self-love and self-mastery. She is the creator of the intenSati method and The Practice which will be released January 2017.