10 STEPS TO SELF DISCIPLINE
Man I am just having a full freaking circle moment right now. I'm currently at home with the house to myself and I've just spent the last 2 hours cleaning, organizing, and planning...and canceling plans for tonight that I actually was SO excited for.
[I was planning on going to FORMA in Santa Monica area with two girls that I used to work with for some BOMB ASS din din, but there were two problems...]
- Their menu doesn't really match up with my weight goals right now annnnd
- I knew that if I went, then I wouldn't get this blog post done and I already PROMISED myself that 1-2 new blog posts would be going out every week.
So now, here I am, listening to this Spotify playlist, drinking my celcius, and jotting down notes and quotes about success and self discipline.
Then a light bulb went off....mayyybe I should write a post about self discipline?!...GENIUS.
Half the time when I have self discipline, I don't even think about it. Actually I would say that that happens more than half the time, which is nice.
For example when I cancelled my plans for this evening, there were 2 people that looked at me all wide eyed when I told them why I cancelled and said "Wow, talk about self discipline", and "Holy shit I would do anything for that kind if self discipline". Hahah but I didn't even think twice about it.
And then I really started thinking about it and realized that actually a ton of people have told me I have some kind of insane ability to discipline myself. Whether it's walking by the desserts at work and not grabbing any, or only having 1 piece of licorice instead of 12, or when I turn down a day time pool party because I have unfinished shit on my calendar.
Whatever. I gotta do what I gotta do ya know? But as I get older I'm really starting to see that this isn't as common amongst the majority of other people.
When I think about how I developed self discipline I basically just pull out the archive of alllllll the things my parents had me do when I was growing up.
I was in Taekwondo until I was a black belt and I played soccer into high school so from a young age I always had some kind of coach whether it was in school or at home. I think a lot of discipline came from the combination of the two.
For example - If I was late to practice, I had to run suicides. If I forgot my jersey, there was a punishment. If I didn't want to go to practice simply because I wanted to be lazy, there was basically a big "too fucking bad" haha.
If I was hungover at a game then my punishment was playing the entire 90 minutes as left mid in 90-degree heat. (Mainly because I couldn't tell anyone I was hungover and sucked at lying...still do).
If I got a C, I was grounded. If I didn't go to work, I wasn't given money from my parents. If I forgot to take the trash out to to street I was hit with a text that the next time I forgot, the trash would be laid out in my bed haha soooo I didn't forget. ever. again.
That one may have been a bit of a lie on my parents' end but once people start following through with consequences, you start to believe them...quick.
And if I ever wanted anything...I had to work for it. My parents had me paying my phone bill, car payments, gas, and insurance before I moved out at 20 years old and I have never asked them to loan me money since I've moved to LA. And when I wanted to go on a $500.00 S.W.A.T. trip to Tahoe (S.W.A.T. was the BEST. If you know, you know.) when I was 16, I was allowed to go, but I had to work for the money and save up.
The point of all of this is that I was raised knowing that I have to work for what I want, nothing will be handed to me, and If I mess up, it's my ass on the line.
Growing up I wanted to stab someone because I had THE MOST chores out of all of my friends, was grounded the most, and worked the most haha BUT NOW, I appreciate it. Funny how that happens.
Benefits of Being Self Disciplined:
Because I grew up the way I did, and have had the motivation to stick with what I've learned, I've noticed that my self discipline has allowed me to stay focused on my goals and actually REACH them.
BUT even if you didn't grow up with self discipline and feel like it's something you wish you had NOW, then just know that you CAN HAVE IT NOW. It's just like anything else...whether you do it over and over again, or never do it at all, it becomes a habit...you just need to decide which habit you'll practice.
Even for me, self discipline can be hard. Like I said earlier, most of the time it comes naturally but there's other times that I lose it therefore I understand what it's like NOT to have it, and how frustrating it can be and ultimately how big of a set back it can create.
Having self discipline has allowed me to begin growing into the person that I want to be. It's helped me avoid everything from people, food, and parties (not to sound boring haha) at times that my goals were more important to me. Because girl believvvvve me, if I didn't have goals combined with some self discipline, I'd still be partying my ass off.
It's time to PRACTICE good habits and it's time to look inward and start taking care of YOURSELF. Here's 10 steps that I think everyone should practice if they are looking to be a master at self discipline.
10 Steps to Self Discipline
1. Write down your goals
I mean you have to know what you're even being self disciplined for right? When I write down my goals it HAS to be when I'm relaxed, STRESS FREE, open minded and optimistic. Or actually sometimes it could be like the polar opposite haha. If I'm really over my current circumstances then I will think of a few goals that I feel like I NEED to achieve but as far as writing them down and feeling like they're possible, I need to be in a good place.
Either way, make a point to think about them, and write them down. I have my goals organized on a big white board in my office and I swear it makes all the difference. Also - remember to write down a goal for every area of your life. Have a "personal best" goal, a "career" goal, a "fitness" goal, and even a "family" goal. Maybe you don't contact your family enough or make enough time for them and you want to make it your goal to call them once a week. Whatever it is, write it down and this will start to improve your self discipline.
2. Make a plan
Goals are just words until you have a plan behind them and give them MEANING. So what if you want to live by the beach? If you have no idea how you're going to do it, like not even a first step, then I'm not saying it won't happen, I'm just saying it's unlikely. Also, why wait 10 years to see if you might live by the beach when you could just make a plan and get there in a 6 months? Successful people know that in order to be successful you just need to START SOMETHING. Start small, build positive habits, and you'll be on your way to reaching your goals.
Brian Tracy explains that when it comes to making a plan and actually executing it, we need to understand the CROWDING OUT PRINCIPLE. This means that we need to fill our days with HIGH VALUE & MEANINGFUL tasks in order to be successful as opposed to low value, busy work tasks. This way our day is "crowded" with so much meaningful work, that is blocks out time to work on small things that are not relative.
"When it all comes down to it, nothing trumps execution." - Gary Vaynerchuk
3. Develop the right mindset
I am obsessed with how powerful the mind is. It is so crazy to me to hear people talk about everything from a negative perspective ALL OF THE TIME. "I don't have money." "I'll never find someone so I'm just giving up on love, I'm over it". "I hate this fucking job but I have no other way of making money." "I look like shit." "I'm so ugly I don't know why anyone even talks to me."
I know it's not EASY to change, and it's not EASY to really go for your goals because it can be scary. The unknown is a very scary place and believe me, I get it. When I moved to LA I knew I was going to be on my own but I made it work. And even right now in my life, I am preparing myself for a HUGE change.
And I couldn't even tell you all of the things that could go wrong because I refuse to let my focus go there. What's the point? If I want this change to happen then no matter how scared I am, I need to focus on all the GOOD that will come from it, and all the ways that I WILL be able to make it work.
You MUST MUST MUST live in a positive mind set in order to be successful and have self discipline.
"Your thoughts are incredibly powerful. Choose yours wisely." - Joe Dispenza
4. Have a daily mini accomplishment
This is something that I started having all of my health coaching clients do. We all know that STARTING something is the hardest part right? We dwell on the idea of it, we feel like we REALLY want to start something but we just don't. It happens to all of us but the best thing to do in this situation and the best way to really start working on the self discipline muscle, is to have a mini accomplishment every day.
But make it towards your goal. SO for example, if my goal is to start losing weight then I would write down "START WORKING OUT 3 DAYS A WEEK" as my goal. I might even PLAN on doing it Monday, Wednesday and Friday but then the MOTIVATION and the right mind set might be lacking. So if I just CANNOT get myself to do it, then a mini accomplishment would be to go for a 10 minute walk. Or to take the stairs everyday instead of the elevator.
And BE PROUD OF YOURSELF for doing it. That's an accomplishment!
If your goal is to start a blog but you've been putting it off for 10 months then have a mini accomplishment by bookmarking 5 blogs you love and make a little list that highlights the things you love about them so that you have a better idea of what you want yours to look like!
If you've been eating like shit for the last 2 months and really want to get your diet on track, start by having a smoothie for breakfast and if you don't change anything else for the rest of the day, at least you can go to bed knowing that you did something different today that put you one foot closer to your goals.
I've found that having my clients do these mini accomplishments gives them the confidence they need to do it again the next day, plus some. And then within DAYS they are miles ahead of where they were. You just need to start.
5. Be obsessed with your "why".
If your goal is to lose 10 pounds then your "why" may be because you're going on vacation, it may be that your family has had health issues that you want to avoid or, it may be that you just realized that you need to either lose weight or go up in your jean size, and that's just not an option for you.
Whatever your why is, it needs to really make an impact, or you're not going to care enough to discipline yourself.
"There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling. It's why you were born. And how you become most truly alive." - Oprah Winfrey.
6. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable
Man oh man. I think when I moved out of my parents house and no longer had a coach that was going to give me immediate consequences for my actions...I felt a little lost. All my friends would be going out so I would want to go, or all my friends would be eating mexican food at 2:00am so I would get some too.
Or instead of working on anything, I would decide to go to the beach all day and then the movies knowing that I didn't have money to be spending. Things like that. So it took me a few months of play to realize that no one was going to be holding me accountable for getting my shit done.
I had to do that for myself. So what started happening was, I had to start saying "no" to things that I really wanted to do. I realized that I didn't have time to be sitting around on my phone all day waiting for the next person to text me and invite me to do something.
And it was kindaaa awkward?
People started telling me that I worked too much and that I needed to spend more time with friends but honestly, I didn't feel that way.
There's so many girls I talk to that tell me that one of the biggest things that gets in the way of their goals is their social life. They don't want to miss out on the fun, or all their friends drink, etc.
I get it! But if you want to work and accomplish your goals and your social circle gets in the way of that, then just explain to them that you have to stop going out as much and your true friends will understand.
7. Be consistent with your motivation
I swear this makes self discipline so much easier. If your goal is to start your own business then you need to wake up every day telling yourself that you're going to start your own business, and you need to be clear about the steps you're going to take to get there.
You can't just write it down in a cute notepad once or twice a year and expect it to happen. The more attention you give it, the faster and easier it will come. I'm a big visualization person so whenever I'm in the shower or when I'm meditating or walking, I literally ask myself "what do you want your life to look like in X amount of years". And the picture doesn't just appear quickly and perfectly...but little things start to come to mind and you start to BUILD a picture which eventually turns into like a mini film in your mind.
BUT you have to take the time to think about it, otherwise we are just lost thinking about all the errands and work we have to do that we never even give ourselves the chance to work towards something.
8. Be equal parts realist and optimist
This may be a good or bad thing but for me, a lot of my self discipline has come from the sad truth that at the end of the day, you can't rely on ANYONE to take care of you...or you shouldn't anyway...in my opinion. If you're waiting for a man to take care of you then that's of course your call but what if things don't work out? What if he leaves you and you didn't do anything to set yourself up to stand on your own two feet?
Not to be negative but really, I just want to honestly ask some women what their plan is. So for me, I don't expect to be taken care of which is part of the reason why I work so hard.
With that comes optimism. I am optimistic that everything I'm working on will set me up for security and I'm optimistic that one day I won't have to work as hard but for now, I have to take care of myself, ya know?
"The biggest risk is not taking any risk ... In a world that's changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks." —Mark Zuckerberg
9. Commit to your calendar
This is one of the best things I've ever done. Us girls looove our calendars and organizing and colored pens and shared calendars and what not BUT I feel like we write for 2 weeks and then forget about it for a few months and then start using it again later right? Haha.
Having a calendar with set days to do things is HUGE if you stick to it. It's one of the best ways to practice self discipline.
10. Truly understand the alternative.
When I think of people that are self disciplined, I think it's fair to say that they know that if they DON'T follow through with what they need to do, the consequences will come in the way they feel, the way they live, or the look.
So be honest with yourself about what would happen if you DIDN'T start accomplishing your goals. Does that mean that you'll be at a job you hate for 5 more years? Does it mean that you'll never lose the weight you've been wanting to get off? Does it mean you'll never know your full potential? For me - I know that if I don't work on being my best self, then I can't give my best to others and that's not an option for me.
I want to be someone who is happy and full of life everyday and recognizes that everyday is a gift and that we need to enjoy the ride. BUT if I lose sight of myself or feel like I'm not appreciating each day, then I can't be that person.
Ugh, I could talk about this for forever but to be honest, I gotta go get my brows done haha.
I hope you guys have an AMAZING day!