Have you ever wondered how to remain disciplined in life, especially on those days when you feel like giving up?
Maybe you were trying to quit sleeping in and begin waking up early to get a productive start to the day, but you found yourself unable to stick with it for the long run. Or perhaps you wanted to renew your gym membership and get back into shape, only to fall back into old patterns after a few weeks. Whatever the case, let me start by saying that it’s not entirely your fault.
The world around you is set up to facilitate your lazy, lethargic, and apathetic tendencies.
Think about it; Netflix makes binging TV programs easy. Your smartphone offers loads of incessant pleasure with social media apps. Food delivery services remove any effort to get sustenance. No wonder people can’t figure out how to remain disciplined for the long haul.
However, despite this distracting world, there are ways to hone your focus and remain steadfast toward better habits — even when you feel like quitting.
Here are 3 to consider…
If you’re like most people, chances are you take the power of accountability for granted.
But studies have proven its validity. In fact, a study by the Association for Talent Development concluded that people are 95% more likely to follow through on goals if they have to report their progress to someone they’ve committed to. For this reason, the power of accountability is a great resource to help bolster self-discipline, even when you feel like throwing in the towel.
If you’re pondering ways how to remain disciplined, consider an accountability partner.
Ask a friend or a relative to hold you accountable toward X, Y, Z. Also, it helps to put something sizeable on the line if you fail to follow through. For example, if you fall short of the standard you set, you owe your friend or relative $100. Or maybe you have to do their laundry for a week, or volunteer somewhere, etc. Steal one of these “punishments” or come up with your own.
The idea behind this is that it “ups the ante” and makes it more likely you’ll remain disciplined toward the goal you’re trying to accomplish or bad/good habit you want to break/adopt.
2. Write it Down
The power of the written word offers a lot more utility than you think.
This notion is especially true when it comes to your own word. Consider keeping a journal and documenting your progress if you’re struggling with how to remain disciplined. Simply writing about your aims, goals, and objectives allows you to prioritize them. Consequently, it makes things more concrete, which gives way to higher levels of commitment.
Try journalling to bolster your self-discipline.
I think you’ll be surprised by the effect it can have. However, there is a stipulation. To see these types of benefits, you’ll have to turn journalling into a regular practice. It’s not something you can try once or twice and suddenly feel an unshakable resolve toward any goal you’ve ever set.
But once you get in the groove of a solid journaling habit, you’ll be amazed at how documenting your progress helps you stay disciplined toward the process.
3. Make Success Easy
This tip requires humility.
Realize that your difficulty with self-discipline probably stems from the bar being too high. So I’m going to tell you something you won’t hear from most self-improvement enthusiasts — lower the bar. Place it at a level low enough for you to actually attain it. In other words, make success easy.
What does that look like in practical terms?
If you suck at saving money, start putting away $100 every paycheck; if that feels too much, do $50. If you want to get in shape, go for a 10-minute walk daily. Notice with both these examples; that there’s nothing about a strict budget or an expensive personal trainer. No, simply do the easiest thing and commit to that.
You can add on more later.
But when first starting, make success easy to build your confidence and self-trust. Once you follow through on the little things, the bigger things will naturally become easier. However, if you bite off more than you can chew, you’ll fall short and then beat yourself up for not sticking to it.
Bad way to go.
When success is easy, sticking to the program becomes easy. Therefore, you’re more likely to stay the course. As a result, self-discipline becomes inevitable. Give it a try and see for yourself!
Next Step: Apply the Tips for How to Remain Disciplined
Anyone can become disciplined.
And the best part? It’s actually not as hard as many people make it out to be. When most people think of discipline, they conjure images of someone waking up at 5am, exercising every day, taking cold showers, etc. And while self-discipline can certainly lead to those habits and many more, when starting, it’s a lot more modest than that.
It begins small and builds over time.
So choose one habit, and begin practicing the easiest mode of that habit until it sticks. Once it becomes part of your routine, then and only then are you ready for the next habit. Go at your own pace and comfort level.
And before you know it, in 6 months’ time, you’ll be a completely new person!