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Why Self-Discipline is Over-rated and What to do About it

A lot of people beat themselves up over not being able to lead a disciplined life. Every time they start a “ritual”, the pride and satisfaction that come along with it is quickly gone when they are not able to keep up.

In fact many people don’t even start because they know they will not be able to keep up, so they go on living an unhappy and unproductive life.

I think one of the main reasons behind this flawed way of attaining a disciplined life is that it is based on the expectations of others. It is not your discipline. It is a discipline defined by other people.

For instance, if you genuinely dislike waking up at 5 A.M in the morning, then why should you? Shouldn’t the effort that you put into altering your lifestyle be rewarded and not result in further unhappiness?

The way to go about this should be find out what is YOUR discipline. What is about your life that you genuinely want to change? Though you can receive general guidance from others, only you can answer that question for yourself.

What is someone else’s discipline might not be yours.  Going further with the aforementioned example, if you don’t like waking up early, then don’t. But that also does not mean that you have to keep waking up at a later time where you don’t feel great either.

Try waking up at other times and see where you genuinely feel satisfied with everything. You also don’t have to wake up every day at the same time. If you feel mixing it up is the right way for you, then do that.

Find about everything related to sleeping and waking up, its effects on your health, and acknowledge any changes and compromises you feel you must make. The key should be you feeling one with the discipline you choose.

There will be a lot of trial and error involved when you follow your own discipline but it’s better than following something that you don’t believe in.

When you follow your own discipline, you’ll find you’re at peace with yourself because it is something that you can do forever. The ability to continue something is one of the most important aspects of it being successful.

That is exactly why most New Year resolutions go out of the window in a few weeks’ time. The eagerness to start something does not ensure its sustainability. Whether you are enjoying the activity itself does.

So if you find yourself having to drag your body to the gym, there’s something flawed in your approach. Maybe you’re trying to discipline yourself way too much and are approaching fitness in a way that is not natural to you.

Instead of following a workout routine that feels tough for you, find something that you genuinely like to do even if it’s easy. Look for something about a workout regime that makes you look forward to hitting the gym.

For me personally, I mix up my workouts because the most important thing to me is the euphoric feeling I get after a workout and shower. Few things in life make me feel that good.

So that forms my main motivation. I’m not too focused on carving my body in a particular way or getting an eight pack. That happens too of course as you get fitter, but it’s just a bonus.

Try to go deeper into your motivation about anything that you do. If you’re finding that something is really a struggle, chances are that you don’t want it badly enough.

Try to do things that you are naturally motivated to do, in a way that you are naturally inclined to do.

Your overall productivity will also increase. Moreover, this will give you the confidence to further improve yourself as you know you have already have a solid base that is based upon your individuality.

Your discipline has to reflect who you really are and the kind of life you really want to lead.

Remember, contrary to the light in which discipline is usually viewed, its ultimate aim should be to relax you, not make you feel afraid of it.

Following a discipline that comes from within you will require effort, but that effort will come naturally to you.

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