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Self-Discipline: The Link Between Goals And Accomplishment


I was thinking about the above quote today and realized how important that one piece – discipline – is, if you want to reach your goals. You may remember how much of an advocate I am of bucket lists, and I’m a huge believer in setting goals and creating a process to achieve those goals. But the link between all those things you want to do and actually getting them done is self-discipline (and maybe a little motivation).

Self-discipline helps you to do the things you think you should do, and it helps you overcome any feelings to the contrary you might be having in the moment. For instance, if you know you should pay your bills, but you feel like watching television instead, it is self-discipline that spurs you to get moving on those bills.

Sometimes that means sacrificing the immediate pleasure of what you’d rather do, but it’s for the greater cause of accomplishing larger goals.

Self discipline also gives you the power to follow through on plans or decisions you have made, without changing your mind and taking the easier route. When you have self-discipline, you decide (and act) on your actions that are most likely to lead to your own self-improvement and success. You also have the inner strength to overcome procrastination, laziness, and the temptation of instant gratification when you choose to take a stand against those things and follow through on the things you decided are important to you.

If you think about it, it’s very easy to say you will tackle a home-improvement project or that you want to write a novel or that you will get your finances in order. But what good are goals and plans and ideas if you won’t discipline yourself to accomplish those things? Without the self-discipline to work on the goals that matter to you, all you end up with is emotional clutter that feels like extra weight when you constantly have those projects in the back of your mind, always undone.

What Will Self-Discipline Help You Do?

When you develop the skill of self-discipline, it helps you to:

  • Overcome habits that aren’t beneficial to you, like overeating, smoking, not getting enough sleep, etc.
  • Resist temptations like gossiping, drinking more than you should, or spending too much money.
  • Tackle big projects by disciplining yourself to regularly take on the small steps needed to accomplish the goal.
  • Overcome procrastination.
  • Continue working toward a goal long after the initial rush of enthusiasm has gone.
  • Say “no” when you need to and follow through on the things to which you have said “yes.”
  • Be punctual, dependable, honest, patient, and diligent.
  • Realize dreams!

I know that sounds like an awful lot of benefits from learning one skill, and you might think I’m over-promising, but I’m not! Self-discipline will take you far, and it really is the key to achieving all your personal and professional goals.

So now that you recognize how important self-discipline is, I hope that means you are ready to build yours! Tomorrow’s blog post will feature all sorts of ideas to grow your self-discipline skill. Don’t worry – you can start small and then keep building as you get better. Before you know it, you’ll be making decisions every day that move you toward all the things that you value the most! And, for the record, I can really use some bolstering in this department too, so I’ll be growing with you. It’ll be fun (and rewarding) – I promise! 🙂