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You know you have to hit the gym to achieve your fitness goals. But every part of your body would rather sleep. After all, you’ve had a pretty rough week, and you deserve it. Sound familiar? Everyone goes through this when trying to figure out how to develop self-discipline.
You see, humanity is change-averse. We are naturally wired to resist uncertainty. And this is probably why you find yourself doing the exact opposite of what you should be doing when trying to achieve something great.
But there’s a solution!
When trying to learn how to develop self-discipline, the trick is to train your mind first. Shift your mindset from fear to action, and you’re well on your way to self-discipline.
How to Develop Self-Discipline: 18 Tips
In this day and age where we have almost all the information and technology we need within reach, you’d expect most people to be on top of their health and fitness goals.
But that’s the thing: Conventional wisdom doesn’t help when you’re trying to figure out how to develop self-discipline.
Studies show that only one out of four individuals in the world are physically active. These numbers mean most people face the risk of developing lifestyle diseases.
So, how can you get out of your comfort zone and join the percentage of people that have resolved to maintain an active and healthy lifestyle?
These tips on how to develop self-discipline can help.
Let’s get straight to business:
1. How to use the compound effect to your advantage
One of the most effective approaches on how to develop self-discipline is maintaining a long-term kind of thinking.
What does this mean? It means changing from focusing on yourself in the present and envisioning what you want to be in the future. It also involves making small decisions that will compound to something great in the future.
Some examples of short-term thinking are making wrong food choices, sleeping when you should be training, and missing team training sessions.
At the moment, these actions may seem harmless, but they may have a significant adverse effect on your future.
On the other hand, long-term thinking is showing up for practice, hitting the gym when you don’t want to, and maintaining a good an organized schedule. These positive actions will compound into something great you can be proud of.
2. How you start your day matters
Most people underestimate the benefits of having a morning routine.
A morning routine not only sets the pace for your day but also makes you more productive and improves your sleep because you sleep knowing you’ve accomplished everything you set out to do.
So start thinking of how you’d like to start each day and make it a part of your everyday routine. Within no time, you’ll notice a difference in how you approach challenging tasks in your day.
3. This trick in your morning shower will work wonders
Another great way to develop self-discipline is to start taking cold showers.
Sure, it sounds like torture but taking cold showers can go a long way in teaching you how to develop self-discipline — not to mention its amazing health benefits.
So how does a cold shower help in developing self-discipline?
When you begin this habit, you’ll not want to do it, especially on those chilly mornings. However, this is where the magic happens. If you do it consistently even when you don’t want to do it, you’ll be building self-discipline. And it will trickle down to other areas of your life.
4. Changing your diet could change your life
Most people lack self-discipline when it comes to making healthy food choices, and it spills into other areas of their lives.
Making better food choices isn’t easy. There will be days you’ll want to drown your sorrows in some ice cream and other days when you’re all about green juices and smoothies.
But the trick is trying to push yourself when it seems difficult. When you master this, you’ll start developing self-discipline.
5. You are what you do
There’s also power in developing good habits.
Good habits are one of the automatic ways of how to develop self-discipline.
When you implement them well, you begin accomplishing amazing results that not only boost your morale but also give you a sense of accomplishment that makes you want to strive for more.
Some examples of good habits include listening to fitness podcasts, meditating, taking a morning walk, and drinking more water among others.
6. How sleep affects self-discipline
Another way to develop your self-discipline is to strive to improve the quality of your sleep.
One of the things that affect sleep quality is an inconsistent sleep schedule.
To make your sleep schedule consistent, start by setting your waking up and sleeping time and aim at sticking to this time every single day.
The result will be a good night of sleep and practice for self-discipline development.
7. A tip that keeps on giving
Working out can also help you develop self-discipline.
When you work through the muscle soreness and pain and keep going, it will skyrocket your self-discipline. And the bonus will be fantastic health benefits and a killer body.
8. You’ll need a pen and notebook for this tip
If you want to learn how to develop self-discipline, you can’t afford to go through your day without a plan.
You see, it’s hard to be consistent with something if you keep forgetting to do it.
With a schedule, you never have to. You can use a planner or an app to organize daily activities and set reminders.
You’ll benefit a lot from this experience and gain numerous benefits, one of which is self-discipline. And you’ll enjoy checking off completed tasks at the end of the day.
9. This trick will really get your out of your comfort zone
They say you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. Take a look at your circle of friends. Are they disciplined? Do they inspire you? Do you feel empowered around them?
If you answered no to any of these questions, it might be time to surround yourself with go-getters.
But there’s more to changing your environment than just changing who you surround yourself with. You should also consider changing your physical environment if you find it uninspiring.
10. Grab another notebook and pen
Another effective way to learn how to develop self-discipline is to study behavior change. And no, reading self-discipline quotes won’t cut it.
Read books and listen to podcasts on behavior change and implement the lessons you gather in your life to develop self-discipline. It may help to write them down so that you don’t forget.
11. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger
The journey to self-discipline is far from easy. Along the way, you’ll experience a lot of emotional discomforts that arise because you’re doing this outside your comfort zone.
But don’t let these moments derail your progress or discourage you. Learn to be comfortable in uncomfortable situations. Before you know it, the things that seem so hard, in the beginning, will be your new comfort zone.
12. The most important tip of all
When you’re learning how to be a disciplined person, you’ll find that the process requires you to change in a lot of ways.
You’ll need to change habits you’ve been clinging to for years and embrace some that may not be as easy to adopt.
But don’t resist change because it’s through change that you develop self-discipline and achieve your ultimate goal.
13. Doing this will make the journey more worthwhile
When you begin your self-discipline training, you’ll not always feel like doing uncomfortable things such as taking a cold shower or passing on your favorite dessert. On these days, it can be easy to give up on your goals and go back to your old ways.
To fix this and stay on track, you need a motivator. One way to motivate yourself is by rewarding yourself every time you accomplish something. It doesn’t have to be a significant accomplishment. You can reward yourself even for the small tasks that seem challenging to do.
However, for this trick to work, you need to make the reward something you’re excited about. That will give you anticipation, and it will make you focus less on the work you put in and more on what you stand to gain.
14. Let go of these subconscious obstacles
One of the keys to self-discipline is to get out of your own way. One of the reasons most people don’t achieve their goals is that they’ve convinced they don’t have enough willpower or self-control.
A study by Standford University showed that the level of an individual’s willpower is determined by their own beliefs. If you believe you don’t have enough willpower to commit to something to its completion, there is a high chance you won’t do it.
The same case applies to self-control. If you believe you don’t have self-control, there’s a high chance you’ll give into temptations easily.
Therefore, to win the race fo self-discipline, you need to change your perception of willpower and go for all your goals without any limiting thoughts.
15. A simple way to overcome your shortcomings
To master the art of self-discipline, you’ll also have to be brutally honest with yourself. Identify your weaknesses and the things that hold you back and begin working on them without making excuses.
Too often, people pretend that their weaknesses do not exist or they try to cover them up. If you want to learn how to develop self-discipline, that won’t work. Being honest about your shortcomings is the only way you can start dealing with them.
16. This trick will save you in the face of temptation
Temptations don’t go away just because you’ve decided to be self-disciplined. In fact, you’ll encounter challenges more often than not because you’re more aware of the things that could derail you from your progress.
But there’s a way around it.
Psychologists call it the “implementation intention” method. It is a technique that’s meant to boost your willpower when you find yourself in tempting situations. The process involves coming up with a plan on how to deal with difficult situations you know you are likely to face.
For example, if you’re trying to make better food choices and you get invited to a party where you expect a lot of junk food on the menu, you can implement this technique. You can decide beforehand that you’re not going to indulge in the food but focus more on mingling with a drink in your hand.
This approach not only gives you the mindset to be positive and focus on self-discipline but also prevents you from making decisions based on your emotional state.
17. An effective way to deal with failure
Even with the best intentions and well-laid plans, you’ll fail at times. The key is not to give up when this happens. Dust yourself off and keep moving forward.
Take moments of failure as an opportunity to learn. Find out what caused you to stumble and create a strategy on how to deal with such setbacks in the future. Forgive yourself and avoid wallowing in self-pity and frustration. Such emotions will only impede your future progress.
18. The easiest way to set yourself up for success
As the famous adage goes “out of sight, out of mind.” This saying gives excellent advice. When you remove temptations from your environment, it gets easier to focus on your goals because there are no distractions.
For instance, if you’re trying to lose weight and eat healthier, a simple way to avoid snacking on junk food is to remove them from your environment. When they’re not there, it gets easier to focus on your goals because there’s nothing to distract you. Try it. You’ll be amazed.
The thought of developing self-discipline seems like something complicated and uncomfortable to do. But you don’t have to be afraid of the change and uncertainties. Create a plan and use these tips on how to develop self-discipline and start.
You’ll face challenges, and it will not always be easy. But the trick is to commit despite the shortcomings. Before you know it, you’ll have achieved your goal and mastered self-discipline in different areas of your life.
What are some of the ways you’ve tried to develop self-discipline? Did they work? Please share your experience with us in the comment section below. We love hearing from you.