Want to achieve something that seems impossible? Add some self-discipline to your arsenal to give you the staying power you need to achieve your goals.
Start With Why
Like anything you do, it’s important to know why you need discipline. What will having stronger discipline help you achieve? An article simply telling you to be more disciplined won’t cut it for your long term success.
Working towards a goal without a thorough understanding of why is how most people approach achieving a goal. Maybe they do want whatever it is they are seeking, but not for the right reasons. Maybe it’s something that is currently trendy, or something your friends or family are telling you to do.
These are not the right reasons to have a goal, which will result in a lack of discipline and ultimately not achieving the goal. They may be able to start, but they will eventually fall off because they do not have a compelling enough reason of why they are trying to achieve their goal.
Understanding why you want to do something might seem like a waste of time. Why think about why you need to do it? Just do it, right? Well the power behind extreme discipline are your true motivations. There’s a fire burning inside everyone in the form of what it is they desire. Being able to tap into this fire will help you stay committed when you feel like giving up.
Let’s say you’re thinking about starting a career in real estate. It may seem like a fun profession and you may have friends and family that have told you that you would be good at it. This may be enough to get you started, but you will need more fuel to keep you going.
Think deeper about what you life could look like by following through on your goal. How will achieving this goal make your life better? You might have heard the phrase: keep your eye on the prize. Your reasons for working toward this goal is the prize. Knowing what that prize is, will help you tap into power you didn’t know you had.
Get Your Mind Right
The deeper we get into this article, the more people who tend to fall off in attempting to build their discipline. Being that you’re still reading this article about 400 words in, shows that you have a mind willing to develop.
It’s not enough to just want to achieve a goal, even if you understand the true reasons why you want to achieve that goal. This is just the foundation of a strong discipline. As we build on this foundation of desire, it’s essential to keep your head in the game.
You need to understand that building strong discipline doesn’t come easy, and the only way to maintain and keep building your discipline is to stay focused and committed.
Do not allow your mind to fall victim to a pessimistic attitude. The higher you set your goal, the more you will hear it from others, and even yourself, that it’s impossible to achieve. It all starts with you believing in yourself. If you stay committed, you will be able to achieve your goals. If you keep believing in yourself, others will eventually start to believe in you as well.
Surround yourself with positivity and your goals. Set your wallpaper on your computer and phone as a reminder to stay committed to your goals. Build a dream board or something to help remind you of your goals. Write your goals down daily to help reinforce them.
Your mind will wander, you need to keep directing its attention to what it is you are trying to achieve.
Exercise Your Discipline
Your brain is just another muscle in your body. Studies have been done to show that using your brain actually drains you of energy. Scientists had subjects push on a dynamometer (a device used to measure how much force can be exerted). They then took a measurement. Next, they had the subjects solve a problem that required critical thinking. Once finished, they had them push on the dynamometer again.
What they found confirmed their thinking. The subjects weren’t able to exert the same amount of force after trying to solve the problem.
When you think of your mind as a muscle, the way to build it seems obvious. Exercise it.
This is the same way to build your self-discipline. Exercise it. If you think of people who have extreme discipline, you probably can envision someone who was or now is in the military. Military men and women are famous for their strong discipline.
How does the military do such a good job at promoting strong discipline in its members? Well to start, they typically have to start with some sort of boot camp. One of the key objectives of these training camps is to make their member both physically and mentally strong. Members of the military are pushed to their limits to exercise and maximize their discipline.
Sweat the Small Stuff
Now you don’t have to join the military to build a strong discipline. There are many ways to grow your discipline in what you do every day. The small choices that you may not even be aware that you’re making all work towards shaping the person that you are.
It starts with how you start the day. Do you decide a certain time that you want to wake up, or do you just wake up when you wake up? Although it may not seem like much, it’s these small decisions that add up to exercise your discipline.
If you go to the gym never having worked out before, you need to start with easy weights and exercises. Now the trick for these easy decisions and exercise is repetition. You’re not going to suddenly turn into Arnold Schwarzenegger by curling a 5 pound dumbbell once. You also won’t build a strong discipline by waking up on time just once. It’s something you have to do everyday to build discipline.
Once you have waking up mastered (that includes not snoozing), you can start adding some more discipline exercises. Maybe it’s the food you eat. It could be how you spend your time. The more you exercise your discipline, the stronger it will get.
Get Back on the Horse
Nobody is perfect, not matter how strong their discipline may be. Everyone has their failures, it’s just how you decide to move forward after failing or falling off the horse.
How can you make sure that you will not build a strong discipline? By giving up when you have a moment of weakness. You need to understand that nothing is perfect, including you. Everyone will have their weak moments, but what set’s apart the truly disciplined is how they react to what happened.
Use these moments as learning experiences. Find out what went wrong that caused you to fall off and decide what you can do in the future to keep it from happening again. This constant improvement will help bolster your discipline and make sure that you continue to improve.
Keep Building Your Discipline
The way most people become “burnt out,” is through reaching their peak. Thinking that they have nowhere to go but down can only end in disaster. By constantly growing and improving, you’ll avoid the sensation of burn out. There always needs to be some new goal that you are achieving.
This is the easy part that tends to come naturally when you are constantly pushing yourself to achieve a goal. New goals will arise when you meet your current ones. If you are constantly trying to build your discipline, it will keep improving. Take a day off, even if it’s just a few small choices, and you’ll be tearing down your discipline.
If you’re not growing, you’re dying. Constantly pushing yourself and your business forward will reward you in ways you can’t even imagine.
Check out the New Year’s Resolution episode of State of Real Estate for more on staying committed to your goals.