How to Improve Your Self-discipline?

You planned for a morning run at night, but as the alarm clock screamed, you snoozed it and skipped the run just like that…

You bought good books with the intention to finish them within a week or a month, but they were shelved one after the other...

If these have ever happened to you, this article will share with you the importance of self-discipline and how to improve it. 

Let’s get started! :) 

Why is Discipline Important?

1. Discipline sets you free

“Discipline = Freedom”

Some might feel these two words are like water and oil. We look at discipline as regulatory rules, whereas freedom is the liberty of doing things with total independence. 

However, these two are indeed a perfect match.

Before you have financial freedom, financial discipline is required (or else you might enjoy spending until you bleed your wallet dry and can’t spend money with freedom anymore).

Before you have time freedom, self-discipline is needed for time management (or else you might spend time as you like until you have no time left at the end). 

As Eliud Kipchoge, one of the world’s leading long-distance runners, once said, “Only the disciplined ones in life are free. If you are undisciplined, you are a slave to your moods and your passions.” 

2.Discipline makes you a better person

Whether what you do is good or bad, if you continue to do it consistently, you will become a new you (in a significantly better or worse version).

The 1% rule states that if you’ve become better, just by 1%, you can become 38 times better in one year.

If you read 5 pages of a book every day, you’ll learn a lot more new things as the year ends.

If you run 2-3 km each day, you’ll become more energetic like yourself in your teen years as the year ends. 

“Discipline creates habits, habits make routines, and routines become who you are daily (The Performance Course).” 

3. Discipline helps you get what you want in life

To stay disciplined is when you sacrifice short-term enjoyment for long-term goals.

Of course, you may find it difficult to wake up for a morning run, eat a proper meal or read books regularly, but your long-term goals and self-discipline are really what keep you going. 

Below is a case study about Delayed Gratification by James Clear that we found interesting;

In 1960, Walter Mischel, a professor at Stanford University, and his research team created a test on a group of children aged 4-5 years old.  

The professor let the children wait in a room with marshmallows (a treat that most children like). One piece of marshmallow was presented in front of each child before he said, “I got to go outside for a while, any of you who didn’t eat the treat in front of you will be rewarded another piece.”

Sure, there’re many kids who couldn’t resist and helplessly ate the treat, but there are some of them who were able to wait until the professor came back. 

Ten years later, the research team followed up with those children (who have become teenagers) and found those who waited for the second piece got higher exam scores, seemed less aggressive and healthier, and would socialize better.   

The research team kept following the group for over 40 years and found that the child group that was able to wait for the second piece of marshmallow became more successful in life (Success looks different among everyone, but answers given by these people pointed out they succeeded at what they wanted).

In the end, those who know how to save up for the future tend to succeed and achieve more of what they want in life.

How to Improve Self-discipline? 

Self-discipline can be created using these 3 easy steps;

1. Write your Personal Mission & Vision Statement

Personal Mission Statement reflects how you live your life these days, while Personal Vision Statement describes who you want to be/what you want in the future.

Read more about Personal Mission & Vision Statement here.

2. Make use of Affirmation

Overall, keep going or quitting depends much on your ‘Mind’. There’s a way that hypnotizes your mind by telling it to “Go Go Go!”. That magical tool is called Affirmation.

You can read more about Affirmation at “What is “Affirmation”? and How could it Turn your Life Around?” here.

3.Start good habits and get rid of bad ones

As in the Atomic Habits book, building good habits and eliminating bad habits can be achieved through the following 4 steps: 1. Make it clear 2. Make it attractive 3. Make it easy and 4. Make it satisfying. 

Conclusion

Now you understand how important self-discipline is and how to improve it.

If you are currently feeling lost, lazy or unmotivated, we hope that this article will help you get back on track.

Stay focused & stay disciplined!

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