Theodore Roosevelt, the 26th president of the United States, once said that “with self-discipline most anything is possible.” While many of us realize that it takes a lot of control over our own actions to get where it is we want to go in life, that doesn’t mean that it’s always easy for us to maintain our positive self-discipline habits long enough to see any real progress.
Sure, our drive is generally pretty strong when we first start out, when our minds are filled with visions of how great our life will be once we master our own weaknesses. Yet, it’s not uncommon to soon have that drive tested as all of our old (and not-so-disciplined habits) threaten to creep back in.
So, what can you do to maintain your momentum with regard to your newly acquired self-discipline habits, ensuring that you’ll keep at them long enough to see some true results?
Know Your Why
Why is it that becoming self-disciplined is so important to you? Will it help you grow your business? Or maybe increasing your level of self-discipline at work means that you’ll have more time to spend at home with your spouse and children?
There really is no wrong answer to this question, but knowing why you want to change your habits and fully appreciating the value that being self-disciplined can bring to your life will help you stay motivated as you pursue more positive self-discipline habits.
If you’re having trouble figuring out your why, Southwestern Consulting suggests that you ask yourself a few “what” based questions instead. For instance, what do you want to be known for? And what do you want people to think of when they think of you? This helps you determine what is most important to you.
Limit Your Obstacles
If you set out to lose weight, how successful would you be if you stocked your kitchen cupboards full of chips, cookies, and candies? Not very, right?
Well the same is true if your goal is to become more self-disciplined. The more obstacles you can remove that can potentially sideline your new habits, the greater your chance of getting—and staying—disciplined.
For instance, if you know that checking your social media accounts can suck you in for hours at a time, make it a rule to only look at them once in the morning and once at the end of the day.
There are even apps you can download that can help with this, blocking access to these platforms during specific times of day. Reviewed shares that Offtime, Moment, and Flipd are three to consider.
Only Change One Habit at a Time
If your goal is to reach higher levels of success through self-discipline, T. Harv, author of Secrets of the Millionaire Mind and founder of Peak Potentials Training, suggests that you shouldn’t try to change all of your habits all at once. Instead, focus on changing one main habit at a time.
Though it may feel like you’re going too slowly by focusing on just one, T. Harv says, “if you can just change one habit, I promise you this: your life will change.” In other words, the results of that one minor change can be enough to create major results.
So, make a list of all of the self-discipline habits you want to institute and pick one. Work on that habit only until it is something you begin to do without thought. Then and only then should you move on to another habit.
When you know your why, limit your obstacles, and focus on changing just one habit at a time, your self-discipline habits are more likely to stick. Which means that their results are more likely to stick too.