So you have goals set huh?
For some , you may be in season of growth and expansion. Which means laser focus on those goals you set out for yourself this year.
You did set your goals for the year right ?
Dont worry, its never too late. You can decide on December 17th that you want to make the rest of your year better just like someone can decide on January 1. The power is not behind the date, instead it exists in the desire to grow and achieve.
Set your destination , then take the journey.
Whether you have a clearly defined monthly plan or a over all reaching goal for the year, there is one thing you will need to cultivate in order to get it done.
Contrary to popular belief… It’s not hustle. It’s not talent. Not even increased intelligence.
It is SELF DISCIPLINE.
No matter the goal you seek to reach, developing the skill habit or patience necessary to achieve it requires a healthy helping of discipline. It is true, most of us need help in this department . Setting goals, especially in the super motivating parts of the new year, is the easy part. But having the follow through and consistency to accomplish your goals is imperative.
The truth is, we all have things we WANT to do. But I am sure we all know from experience at some point in life, WANTing something is not enough to get it. As intimidating as it can be at times, anyone can develop self discipline.
The foundation of self discipline is mastery of thoughts. With awareness of our thoughts , we gain the power to control our actions and therefore gain power over the outcome of our lives. Without this control we act out emotionally due to lack of direction, intent, and awareness.
In order to form habits that cultivate a deeper sense of discipline and control over our actions we must take steps to form break bad habits, form new ones, and shift our mindset. These is how we change what is comfortable and natural for us. We can go from being naturally unorganized to naturally sticking to systems and plans with time and consistent effort to cultivate habits of an organized person. Habits and skills are like muscles, if you exercise them consistently they will grow bigger and stronger- helping you become a better stronger version of yourself.
In every journey, there will be opportunities to quit or veer off the path that leads to your goal. It may be wrapped in a distraction or dressed up as an excuse we tell ourselves when we are not motivated- it could be toxic friends or bad habits we have held on to that need to be cut off. But regardless of WHAT it is, there will always be moments when you have to CHOOSE and DECIDE if you are truly committed to the process and journey associated with the goal you set out to achieve.
How committed are you ?
The reason most people give up is they lack connection to their goals. What I mean is that is just a goal on a piece of paper for them to do. They are not connecting WHY this goal is important to their lives. Why do you really want to lose weight ? Why do you really want to write that book? Why do you care if you get that 4.0 GPA or that promotion at work ?
Maybe you want to live longer- so you take control of your health and set fitness goals.
Or maybe you want to share and inspire others to learn from an experience in your life – so you goal to write a book . Establish a why for your goals and you will find yourself able to keep pushing through when you want to quit or succumb to excuses and distractions.
Make yourself accountable for the goals you set. Whether you get an accountability partner that will help encourage and push you to do what you say you will , or you just make your goals and progress you share with others online. Find a way to make sure you are consistent and on track with your goals.
Tracking and auditing your goals for yourself is a great way to be accountable however it requires great discipline because we can be subject to our own enabling sometimes. Setting up systems for success like a public deadline or an accountability partner is truly being proactive about staying and being more disciplined.
Thinking ahead to avoid eventual pitfalls is an exemplary example of self discipline. You are more successful in staying disciplined being proactive than reactive. .
A fact of life….
In order to gain something , you will more than likely have to give something up. This is true for the habit of self discipline. You will have to shed habits and mindsets that hold you back from your ultimate goals. This may mean the way you spend your time will change, or the people you hang out with, maybe even the way you make financial decisions.
Sometimes losing things is not a bad thing, but instead the evolution of self and the shedding of that which no longer serves us . Know that sacrifice is apart of change, because we must rid ourselves of what does not work for what does.
One of the hardest parts of change is the wait process .We all want things to happen quickly , but change is an evolutionary process that builds on itself over time. It can be hard but understand that all things worth having take time to build, this includes our habits and especially means our best lives.
One way to cope with impatience and becoming unmotivated is to set milestone goals and celebrate your wins. Both big and small. Cultivating self discipline is not a sprint , it is a marathon – and that definitely requires patience.
Self discipline is not the work of happenstance. It is generally the carefully planned or intentional action of a determined or very clear mind that makes disciplined decisions. Someone who is disciplined about healthy eating is intentional about where they eat so maybe they meal prep to avoid temptation at lunch time to get fast and cheap but very unhealthy fast food. This can be applied to every area of our lives.
Be mindful and intentional about your choices, actions and thoughts. Consistent audit of your mindset will help you stay aligned with your WHY and on track with your goals.
Cultivating a disciplined mindset begins with setting and committing to your goal. What goals are you working toward this week?