How to develop self-discipline: 10 effective ways

Greetings, friends!

There is no limit to perfection, and even fairly organized and hardworking people periodically think about how to develop self-discipline. This quality is one of the most important keys to success. Without this quality, neither talent nor luck will give the desired results. Fortunately, by consistently working on yourself, any person can become much more disciplined and purposeful.

Today we'll talk about how to develop self-discipline using 7 effective techniques. But in order for our lessons today to be as effective as possible, let's figure out what this quality is and why it affects our lives.

Know your weaknesses in person

Each of us has our own weaknesses and shortcomings.

Most people are afraid to admit even to themselves their existence or, on the contrary, loudly defend their right to exist.

Psychologists recommend learning to develop

an honest position towards yourself first. Admit to yourself the existence of certain shortcomings and weaknesses, honestly without embellishment. At this stage you can interact with them. Very slowly and gradually, step by step, small victory after victory.

The psychologist claims that an inferiority complex appears when a person expects constant evaluation of his actions from the people around him and is afraid of their disapproval.

“A person with an inferiority complex is afraid of his shortcomings, afraid to admit them (even to himself), because he feels that it would be right for him to be judged, ridiculed, not counted, not included in the lists, omitted - in general, ostracized in any form. An inferiority complex is negative self-acceptance."

So the first step to being more self-organized is learning to be honest about your own weaknesses.

How to develop self-discipline through time management?

“If you don’t conquer yourself, you will be defeated by yourself.”

— Napoleon Hill

Time management is a set of human actions aimed at planning current tasks and allocating time in order to accomplish more. The example of Bill Gates inspires me! The founder of Microsoft was a terrible procrastinator during his student years, but then he “pulled himself together,” which helped him become the richest man on the planet.

The main task of time management:

  • do more;
  • do better;
  • get tired less;
  • draw up a work plan according to capabilities and biorhythms.

Discipline is developed through time management.

5 components of time management

How to develop willpower and self-discipline? You need to learn to manage time. There are 5 basic rules for proper time management.

  1. Time management is the ability to prioritize and sequence your work to make the best use of your time.
  2. Ability to choose important tasks. According to Pareto's law, only 20% of effective actions produce 80% of the desired results. The Eisenhower matrix will help you choose an important task.
ImportantPriority taskWe devote any free time
UnimportantReducing workReduce to a minimum
  1. Planning.
  • Write down a sequence of tasks for the day. Start with the most important things, cross out those done. Over time, you will begin to accomplish 30% more.
  • We plan for a week, a month, a year and write a long-term plan for 3-5 years.
  1. Use the energy of success.
  • High-quality work done on time energizes a person.
  • Self-esteem increases and self-confidence grows.
  • Let's remember the brightest victories.
  1. Getting rid of stress.
  • Don't forget to rest between tasks.
  • Let's get creative.
  • We are in nature.
  • Let's travel.

Learning to overcome temptations

The next step towards our goals is to develop the ability to overcome temptations.

As the proverb says: “Out of sight, out of mind.” No matter how simple it may seem, everyone can appreciate the effect; psychologists recommend simply removing the objects of your affections from sight, this will greatly help in the development of self-discipline.

If you want to eat healthy, just don’t buy unhealthy foods; if you want to increase your productivity, turn off your mobile phone, get off social networks.

The fewer distractions, the more focused you are on achieving your goals. You need to learn to be focused on what you are doing right now. This is a large part of the success of any endeavor.

Some useful tips

In general, in any upbringing process, parents play a fundamental and major role. Of course, the child’s environment has a colossal impact on the formation of qualities, but it is in the family that the foundation of the child’s strong personal skeleton is laid. So, how to develop the discipline that needs special attention:

  1. Established rules (rituals and traditions) must be strictly observed in the family. For example, this is the daily routine, leisure time, and so on.
  2. It is important for parents to remain consistent. If the father punishes, the mother should not interfere in the educational process, otherwise the child will not understand why he was reprimanded. It is necessary to strictly determine the punishment for the offense, then the child will know what to expect for the offense.
  3. You cannot overdo it with punishment so that the child does not withdraw into himself and harbor a grudge.
  4. Confirm educational methods by personal example. If you scold him for the mess on his desk, and things are even worse with you, he will not learn the lesson.

Let's look further at how to instill discipline in a child. There are, of course, exceptions to the rules when the baby, for example, missed a nap, thus disrupting the daily routine. In this case, it is simply necessary to explain the reason for the violation of the routine so that there are no further disruptions.

Make time for quality and timely meals

Most people suffer from various diseases

caused by irregular, low-quality nutrition. Achieving any goal requires, first of all, good physical shape. To do this, you need to regulate your food intake, consider the healthfulness of the foods you most often consume.

If you suffer from overeating, psychologists recommend

be very mindful while eating. Try to monitor your desire to constantly eat - whether this is “eating” problems.

Ekaterina Burlyaeva, nutritionist

, head of the consultative and diagnostic department, claims that people who are accustomed to constantly overeating cannot limit themselves to the normal amount of food; they constantly feel like they are hungry.”

Thus, timely intake of healthy food is an integral factor in a healthy lifestyle.

Sports activities

Any sport disciplines a person if you take it seriously. Find a sport that you like, sign up for a section. You will attend classes, for example, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, from 18.00 to 19.30. If you don’t miss classes without a good reason, then sticking to this schedule will teach you to be disciplined in other areas of your life.

You can also exercise on your own, for example, jogging in the morning or doing a set of exercises. But forcing yourself to do this regularly will be a little more difficult. No one will control you or scold you for bad results. In addition, money for a missed lesson will not be lost, as is the case with attending a section. In addition to developing discipline, playing sports will provide you with good health and a beautiful body.

Set clear goals and write a plan to achieve them

Stephen Covey, in his best-selling book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, states:

that every person will feel truly significant if he realizes that his activities bring good to the world. He recommends clearly articulating your goals and mission. Goals are dreams with specific dates; a mission is what a person generally lives and acts for.

Stephen Covey argues that to truly be a highly productive person, you need to take full responsibility for your life and overcome the fear of looking “bad” in the eyes of other people. A purposeful person is a holistic person, he clearly understands the value of his time and the people around him.

So, first of all, write down your plans.

and goals on paper and then figure it out for yourself - why you need to implement them, what is the point of achieving them. It is also important to realize whether their implementation in life will benefit others, or is it just personal ambitions.

Why is motivation alone not enough?

Today, the Internet and social networks are literally overflowing with information about motivation: books are written about it, videos are made, online courses are developed, and so on. People are inspired by examples of successful people (even though this is often just a picture), they believe that they can do the same, they are inspired even more and... Nothing happens.

Why? Let's figure out what motivation is - objectively and without emotions.

The term “motivation” was first used by the philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, who derived the “Law of Motivation”:

“Our volitions precede our actions, and the influence of the motive on the action is not known from the outside in an indirect way, like other causes, but directly and from the inside, therefore motivation is causality, considered from the inside.”

The word “motivation” itself is a derivative of the word “motive”. Soviet psychologist and philosopher Alexei Leontiev called the motive “objectified need.” In other words, a motive is what motivates action and sets the direction of activity; it is the ability to satisfy your needs. What is the difference between a goal and a need? Let's look at it with an example. Let's say you are hungry - this is a need. You want to satisfy your hunger - this is your goal. A plate of soup that you dream about when you are hungry is your motive, your motivation to action.

Motivation can come from both outside and inside. It’s easier and clearer to explain with examples: you read Leo Tolstoy’s books because you like them - internal motivation. You read Leo Tolstoy's books because they were assigned to read at university - external motivation. You go to the gym because you want to feel healthy - intrinsic motivation. You go to the gym because you want to please the opposite sex - external motivation. Most often, external motivators are money, the approval and admiration of others, career growth, and material acquisitions. Various factors are responsible for internal motivation: the desire for growth and self-development, pleasure, and so on.

Motivation can be positive and negative. Let's look at the examples again: you promise yourself that when you finish writing the article, you will go to a cafe for lunch - this is a positive motivation. And if you promised not to go for walks until you finish the article, this is negative motivation. For some, only negative motivation works; for others, it is important to praise themselves or receive praise from others. As in any other case, everything is individual.

Motivation is closely related to emotions. Remember your mood, energy and desire to immediately take action for success after reading an inspiring article or watching a motivating movie. In moments of euphoria, people predictably think only about the good, that their goal has already been accomplished, and they can rest on their laurels - and at this moment they do not think at all about the intermediate path, which often consists of routine and not very interesting tasks. Moreover, it is impossible to always be in an “active mood”; there are days when you want to give up everything and give up on your dreams. And when motivation stops working, it’s time for self-discipline.

Create your own discipline

Self-discipline is not an innate quality.

Each of us acquires it with experience and conscious effort. Like any other skill, it requires daily practice. Developing willpower takes a lot of effort.

Psychologists recommend taking small steps towards achieving your goals, but every day.

There is a so-called “20 minute rule”.

We devote only 20 minutes a day to activities that bring us closer to achieving our goals. After a short time, the result will be obvious.

Self-discipline is inextricably linked with self-restraint

and making constant efforts. Psychologists recommend analyzing your progress, thus developing awareness and responsibility.

Self-control: developing self-control

According to Wikipedia, self-control is the ability to control your emotions, thoughts and behavior. It is based on will - the highest mental function that determines a person’s ability to make conscious decisions and implement them. It can also be trained and improved, which requires specific methods and strategies that will help you resist or avoid temptation. Yes, these are two fundamentally different ways. The first is considered hardcore, effective and incredibly difficult to implement. The second is perceived by many as weakness, because how can you train willpower and self-control if you simply avoid temptations? But it is both methods in combination that work perfectly. Read more…


Create new habits, but keep them simple

Forming a new habit may seem difficult

overcoming an already established way of life. However, in achieving the goal, this is one of the important success factors.

Psychologists recommend breaking your goal into a number of stages.

Instead of “burning out” at the very beginning, it is better to do simple, but doable tasks for you.

Are you dreaming of losing weight?

Start with exercise that lasts 10-15 minutes.

If you want to improve your daily routine, go to bed 15 minutes earlier.

If you want to eat healthy food, make a grocery list in advance. Take small steps, overcome your own fears and always continue to move forward.

The principle of gradualism

You can implement huge changes by breaking them down into small, manageable steps. The thing is, the anti-change “troll” living in your head won’t even notice that something big is happening. Resistance increases exponentially, rather than proportionally, depending on the magnitude of the change. This principle works in many aspects of life:

  • Recruiting new spies is not “Hello sir, would you like to work for a foreign government to ruin your own country?” It's a series of relatively harmless and legal steps—dinners, small gifts, and requests for not-so-important information—that eventually result in serious treason.
  • When filming porn films, producers do not ask a stranger from the street to lie down with five musclemen - it all starts with light nudity (“Honest modeling business, what are you talking about”), then everything goes on. Well, you understand.
  • There are ominous examples from politics.
  • There is a thought experiment about a frog in boiling water - maybe this is a lie, but they say that if you put a frog in a pan of water and heat it slowly, the frog will not jump out, because the boiling will be gradual. I don’t know why anyone would want to do such things, or even how true it is, but the principle is exactly the same - this is how you need to overthrow the internal saboteur troll. Boil him alive. Slowly, lulling his attention.

We want to use this same mechanism for good.

Do you want to start exercising more? Go for a walk. Do you want to go on a diet? Start by giving up the one thing that's most harmful to you—probably sugar. Do you want to quit smoking? Take today's "last" cigarette, break it in half and flush it down the toilet.

The next point follows from this.

Create your morning routine

Morning routine

– an extremely important element of self-discipline. The time you wake up will determine how productive your entire day will be.

In Eastern psychology

and Ayurveda says that the earlier a person wakes up, the more ability he has to overcome difficulties in life. Getting up early gives a person health, invulnerability, willpower, calmness and determination.

The most optimal time for waking up in the morning is from 4 to 6 am.

In the morning hours it is very favorable to engage in meditative practices, do exercises, jogging, and eat light and healthy food.

Be firm while remaining kind

A huge mistake parents make is duplicity. This is when a child is hugged and praised, and a minute later they scream with all their might, waving their fists for their offense. You cannot achieve anything by screaming and hysterics; you must remain calm and restrained, remain soft and friendly even at the time of punishment, so that the baby is not afraid and understands his offense. There is enough rigor and seriousness in voice and behavior.

Forgive yourself for your mistakes and keep moving forward

Even if we have the best intentions

and follow a clearly defined plan, we can expect many failures and mistakes. Any success is associated with difficulties and overcoming the fear of failing again.

Psychologists teach us to perceive difficulties as an integral part of the path.

Everyone will have their own ups and downs, which will provide their own invaluable experience. The main thing is not to stop, it may be very slowly, but still move forward. Do not allow yourself to plunge into a depressed state for a long time, to feel guilt, anger, disappointment.

Learn from your mistakes

, know how to forgive yourself and others, because success is determined not only by what you achieve, but also by how, what experience you gained in the process of achievement, what life lessons you learned.

Intentional exception management

The best way to manage vices is to accept them and manage them. You cannot simply make them evaporate, but you can learn to control them and redirect their inertia by consciously including them in the plan. This is the judo method.

The key is to control the time and dosage. Diet? Plan the days when you will cheat (once a week, say). Are you wasting valuable hours of your life on Facebook? “No more Facebook” is not true, “Facebook for 20 minutes in the evening to find out what’s going on with friends, and that’s it” is true.

Remember that the brain resists major changes, and even doubly so if they interfere with immediate gratification. Abruptly giving up psychological habits is a 100% way to create a cycle of disappointment, failure and self-hatred.

This can be avoided by accepting and planning for exceptions—no exceptions to planned exceptions.

You can absolutely allow yourself to say, “Today I will stay home, eat pizza in my underpants, and play video games.” But do it only occasionally, consciously and deliberately - you can't just let it happen to you in the absence of a more productive plan. Any plan is better than this.

Paradoxically, such carelessness is not even pleasant, it makes you feel guilty and worthless. But you will enjoy it if it is a planned holiday. There should be days for pajamas, ice cream and stupid TV shows. But it is you who must let them into your life, not they you into theirs.

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