Self-discipline is a major factor when it comes to how much success you get to achieve. Reaching big goals more often than not takes doing things most people do not enjoy.

Discipline is defined as “the ability to control one’s feelings and overcome one’s weaknesses; the ability to pursue what one thinks is right despite temptations to abandon it.

It is your ability to learn to do things you don’t really enjoy.

Every person lacks the necessary discipline from time to time. Think of hitting the snooze button when your alarm goes off early in the morning, or taking another helping of chocolate pudding. It’s not easy to get yourself to do what you very well know you should be doing. And when you do turn around and sleep some more, you might feel bad about it later. You might start doubting yourself and feel even worse. Don’t allow this to happen to you! Normally you won’t feel you have failed yourself if you can generally get a grip of the situation and tighten your discipline.

How to improve your self-discipline:

  1. Be easy on yourself. Feeling disappointed in yourself makes most people more incapable, not more proficient. Everyone lets it slip from time to time; all you need to do is reflect on it and realize that it is one of those moments for you. Learn from it; get over it and get it behind you. Move on ‒ you won’t accomplish anything by beating yourself up about it…
  1. Go back to your motivation for the goal. Remind yourself about the reasons this goal is so important to you. Think how it will feel when you accomplish it. Being constantly motivated is for all practical reasons the only way to move yourself in doing something you don’t really want to do. In a perfect world you could work at finding a way to make the activity easier and get some joy out of it.
  2. Make it easy. The smaller the barrier, the easier it would be to perform the task. If you want to start exercising regularly, start with something super easy ‒ say just 5 minutes at a time. Doing any kind of exercise for just 5 minutes is super easy. Then, after a few days, start increasing it. Next week you can do 10 minutes each day; the week after 15 or 20. Make it a form of exercise that you enjoy, like taking a brisk walk as opposed to hitting the treadmill…
  • You will most probably find that the only hurdle is just getting started, and once you are going, you will find it easier to go ahead and finish the whole thing. So make it super easy to get started. Simplify it by setting a small at first ‒ make just one of those dreaded phone calls; clean only part of the garage (for only 15 minutes).
  1. Do something to make it more enjoyable. Exercise might be much more fun if you rather play a game of squash, join the local basketball league or tackle the treadmill all by yourself. It might be much more enjoyable working on the computer out on the deck with the birds and the trees in the background or going for a walk in the park rather than sweating it out in the gym. Think of a way to do what needs to be done in an enjoyable
  2. Remain in the present. We are all good at making ourselves feel bad about things we did before or haven’t started doing yet. Bygones are bygones ‒ stop thinking about the unpleasant part of the activity until it is time to tackle it. If you sit around for hours dreading doing it, it makes it that much harder to actually do it.
  • Staying in the present is one of the reasons Buddhist monks are such calm people ‒ they spend all day trying to focus on their current activity. Once that is done, they move on to the next activity and repeat the whole process. Their only goal each time is to do whatever needs to be done with the same amount of attention and utter calmness. If you use this technique, it will go a long way toward helping you with discipline.
  1. Hang on and finish it. If you start with a bang, you might exercise for a week non-stop, then fall off the wagon. Start all over again with that small, first step ‒ one step at a time. You are not a machine; you can’t expect to be perfect all of the time. Set a goal to continuously improve rather than be perfect.

Everybody needs some self-discipline to do anything that is worth your while unless you are one of those lucky few that genuinely enjoys each and every step involved. When things get the better of you and you get stuck, relax ‒ take it easy and go back and take another look at your original motivation. Make it as easy and enjoyable as you can. Start with small steps, then repeat and improve.

It doesn’t matter what your goal is ‒ the more control you have over yourself, and the more self-discipline you can master, the more successful you will become.

The Wealth Creators Personal Development Program can help you with self improvement click here to find out more!

Dr. Hannes Dreyer
Dr. Hannes Dreyer

Hannes is one of the world’s leading authorities in Wealth Creation. As a speaker and author on the subject he is at the forefront of this personal development industry. He is the founder of the Wealth Creators University and the Wealth Creators Method. The University is a private education organisation based on the culmination of 30 years of experience, research and study into finances, economics, psychology and philosophy.