According to Merriam-Webster, discipline is control gained by obedience or a prescribed pattern of behavior. Discipline comes from sustained self-control. Lots of things can go wrong if you lack self-control. You may be more prone to act on impulse, and your life may lack direction as a result of that impulsivity. Meeting goals can prove difficult, if not impossible. The truth is: discipline is vital for success.
If you can’t gain traction in your life because of your need for instant gratification, you may need to develop discipline or self-control. Naturally speaking, humans aren’t that great at self-control. It takes a dedicated effort and the presence of incentives and obstacles to make progress toward a goal. Once you make consistent progress for some time, you will develop the habits necessary to transform your life. Learn how discipline can give you the life you dream of.
Learn How Discipline Can Fix Much of Your Life.
No Self-Control? It’s Only Natural
If you struggle with self-control, you’re not alone. In fact, the need for instant gratification may be hard-wired in your brain. A recent Princeton University study found that the human brain battles itself over short-term rewards and long-term goals. In short, your brain prefers immediate rewards even if it means you will lose out on something of greater value in the future.
This battle for self-control can prevent you from realizing your goals. Each time you binge watch your favorite show rather than working or eat chocolate instead of carrots, you make it that much more difficult to reach your goals by weakening your self-control. So that’s what you’re up against here.
How to Practice Self-Control
Many believe that willpower or sheer brute-force will give them all the self-control they need. However, willpower can and will fail. The key is to look for ways to reduce the likelihood of failure.
Research shows that you increase your odds of success when you stop relying on willpower alone. How? The key is to create incentives for success (or obstacles to failure) that will make doing the right thing a no-brainer. For example, you can download an app that will block all leisure browsing on your work computer, which will allow you to be more productive. Or you could give yourself a reward for saying no to candy at the office. (Just make sure it’s a feel-good but non-sweet reward!)
Allow Self-Control to Transform Your Life — Give it 66 Days
The more you practice self-control, the easier it gets. If you use self-control to do an activity for an average of 66 days, you will develop a habit. Once you develop a habit, you will do the activity without even thinking about it, which can dramatically transform your life.
Imagine the health benefits you would reap if you walked two miles every day without missing a day, or how large your savings account would be if you made weekly deposits. The compounded results of repeated action can be huge. You already have the power in you to do it; you just have to begin.